Test Prep: An Investment in the Future

Imagine, your child is a sophomore or junior in high school and looking to the future. Maybe he or she has taken a PSAT before and done well and now you’re now starting to look at colleges. There are lots of options: in-state or out-of-state, public or private, and large or small. According to the College Board, the average college in America’s tuition for last year was approximately $33,000 for a private institution and $25,000 at an out-of-state public institution.

In four years, that cost surpasses $100,000, with additional fees, textbooks, and room-and-board.

So, now you’re in sticker-shock recovery and thinking about how you’re going to pay for said college. Next, you should consider an SAT or ACT preparatory courses. Why does my child need SAT Prep, if they already scored a 1200-1300? Schools, especially the pricier private schools, give out high-dollar scholarships. Many use P/SAT or ACT scores as a qualifier. National Merit Scholarships are determined in your junior year, based on your PSAT score. This NMSC awards scholarships of up to $25,000 to 7,500 students across the nation. Some are awarded by the NMSC and some by individual colleges.

I had the privilege of coaching a student in English and Reading skills in September 2016. He was applying to his dream school: a public university in the southeast. Out-of-state tuition for the 2017-2018 year at this school is $28,840, $48,602, if you include room-and-board and fees. That’s $194,408 for four years, barring any tuition or fees increases.

I’ll wait while you pick your jaw up off the floor.

Ultimately, he completed a comprehensive 40-hour program. This student came in knowing what the requirements of the scholarships were. We knew he had to raise his, already high, SAT score a minimum of 100 points, in order to qualify him for a scholarship. Based on his needs and goals, he completed a customized program: 10 hours in Math and 30 hours in English and Reading. SAT Prep proved to be a worthwhile investment for this student. Because of the investment he and his parents made, he raised his SAT score 110 points, and he was ultimately awarded a $32,000 scholarship. We’ve reduced his need from $48,000 to just $15,000. Now his four year, out-of-pocket expense is just $60,000. SAT Prep tuition may seem expensive, but consider the fact that his investment is going to end up saving him roughly $130,000 and it begins to make much more sense.

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