SAT Prep classes & coaching

Small Group SAT Prep Classes (Verbal and Math) and Coaching

I offer SAT verbal and math prep for students in a small group class format.    My goal is to provide classes that will improve a student’s score by increasing their knowledge base and test taking skills.  I also seek to offer classes that are significantly more affordable than anything I have seen out in the marketplace.

SAT prep is a big business now, and all of the courses that I have found are quite expensive.   Given the abundance of test prep manuals available on the market, it is undoubtedly the case that a really diligent student could probably do a pretty good job of preparing themselves for the SAT without ever taking a formal prep class.    However, the level of prepartion required would require more gritty discipline than I have yet to find in 99% of the high school students I know.    In addition, most students will come across problems that they don’t understand, and in order to master the material they will need a more in depth explanation than can be found in the available manuals.

The structure of a class is incredibly useful in getting a student to set aside time and focus on the task of preparing.   However, the cost of a class may be a significant issue for many people.   My classes are priced at less than half the hourly rate of most of the major test prep companies out there — so there is a major savings for the parent.  See my cost comparison section below for details.

I also have a bias towards more hours of preparation than you get in an 18 hour course.   The more time and effort students put in, the more they are going to improve those scores.   I would like to see students doing over 30 hours of class prep, plus homework in between classes — or if fewer hours of class, then a daily regimine of self study for several months.  At the same time, I realize that many students and parents are not willing to devote the resources needed for this level of test prep.

In order to create the flexiblity to allow for individual needs and preferences, my basic course is split into 3 sections of 12 hours each.  The three sections can be taken in any order, and do not repeat material.   So a student can sign up for a 12 hour course for just a bit of classroom prep, and then can continue on with the additional 12 hour segments if they are willing to devote more resources to it.

The math SATs require several skills in order to do well on them.   First, you must have the fundamental math knowledge needed to answer the questions.   However, this is not enough.  The SATs almost never ask a simple straight forward question.  Rather, they couch questions in such a way that the first task is to read the problem very carefully.   Then, in addition to a careful reading, you often must also apply logical reasoning in order to figure out where to go from there.   In addition to these skills — fundamental math knowledge, the ability to read the questions carefully, and the ability to reason out what the question is asking, you also have to be able to not lose your cool while taking an important timed test.  For students with weak math fundamentals, either one-on-one work or my math fundamentals class may also be needed.

So all in all, it is a tall order.  My approach is to work through the practice tests in the College Board The Official SAT Study Guide – slowly and carefully.  My goal is not only to review the math needed to solve the problems, but also to teach the logical reasoning skills that are so often required in order to figure out what the problem is asking.    And the whole process takes practice.   A little practice is better than none, and a lot of practice is better than a little.

The verbal portion of the SAT comes with its own challenges, involving knowledge of vocabulary, and again, a certain ability to reason and make sense of things.  And of course, performance on this portion of the test can also be improved with practice.  Again, my approach is to work through the problems slowly and carefully, and to incorporate vocabularly drill into the lessons.

I like to have the classes fairly short (in terms of the total number of hours).   Because of the large quantity of material in the College Board Study Guide, it is possible to repeat a class several times over without repeating any of the content that was covered in a previous class.  In order to really improve one’s score, one should take the class multiple times, and hopefully work on one’s own in between.

SAT Class Schedule

Pre- June 7th SAT Intensive SAT prep Classes

This is a set of intensive SAT prep classes given in the 2 weeks after the completion of the academic year and prior to the June 7th SAT.    Class size will be limited to 8 students.   Students need to register and pay in advance in order to hold their spaces.

The Basic Class – 16 hours for $240

Tuesday May 26th – Friday May 29th,    10:00 – 12:00.                                            Monday  June 2nd – Thursday June 5th, 10:00 – 12:00.                                                                                             (16 hours)        $240


The Basics Plus Class – 24 hours for $340

Tuesday May 26th – Friday May 29th,  10:00 – 12:00 plus 2:30 – 3:30                                   Monday June 2nd – Thursday June 5th  10:00 – 12:00 plus 2:30 – 3:30

Cost Comparison

Kaplan charges $699 for an 18 hour course.  ($38.80 per hour of classroom instruction).  In addition, it does include 4 proctored tests plus online material.

Double800 charges $600 (this is their early registration price) for an 18 hour and 40 minute course ($32.10 per hour of classroom instruction).

The Princeton Review Small Group 30 hour course costs $1599 — or $53 per hour plus change.   This small group course has a maximum of 4 students.  It also includes 4 proctored tests.

The Princeton Review Standard 30 hour course costs $999 — or $33.30 per hour of instruction.   It also includes 4 proctored tests.

My 16 hour course costs $240.  The is $15 per hour of classroom instruction.    Class size is limited to 8 students.   I expect students to take the time to do their own practice tests under timed conditions.

Ongoing SAT prep Classes

Summer Break

The SATs often seem a long ways off in the summer.  However, summer’s more relaxed schedule actually makes this a perfect time to start to prepare for the SATs.

One of the best strategies for the SAT is simply to whittle away at the material.  On a regular basis.  Best 30 minutes a day — if a student has the discipline to do that on their own.

The other way to stick with it is to take a class.  My ongoing SAT prep classes meet once a week for 2 hours.  A series of 6 classes costs $180.   Up to 2 missed classes can be made up in a later class if scheduling conflicts prevent the student attending all of the classes.

Summer class times have yet to be set.

SAT Coaching

Individual SAT coaching is available.   It can be purchased either on an hour by hour basis, or paid in advance for larger blocks of time that will then be divided up into a combination of phone help and face-to-face tutorials.  Rates are as follows :

One hour at a time : $60/hr.

A  4-hour block of time : $200 ($50/hr.)

An 8-hr block of time : $360 ($45/hr.)
Tucson math tutor math tutors math tutoring Tucson University of Arizona UA UofA PCC Pima Community College

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