With many colleges reversing pandemic-era policies making the SAT optional and the College Board launching a new digital version of the SAT, college-bound students have several important decisions to make when it comes to standardized tests. One thing that remains the same is that preparation is key to ensuring you achieve the best results for top-tier college degree programs. To help, we’ve ranked the seven best SAT prep courses:

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How We Chose the Best SAT Test Prep

SAT or Scholastic Aptitude Test scores play a significant role in determining your eligibility for college admission, scholarship awards, and first-year class placement. You can achieve a higher score by enrolling in SAT preparation courses. However, with so many SAT prep options available, it can be challenging to determine which courses are worth your time and investment.

Our team evaluated dozens of companies and courses to provide you with the information you need to make an informed choice.

We started with an expansive list of well-established SAT prep programs, like the Princeton Review and Kaplan, as well as newer services, like Prep Expert and Khan Academy. We then did a deep dive on each company, including:

  • Thorough evaluations of each company’s programs and materials via website review, sample lessons, and third-party resources
  • Free trials (when available)
  • Communications with company representatives via chat, email, and social media
  • Analysis of customer comments on platforms like Trustpilot, Facebook, and Reddit

In collaboration with Dana Marvin, an expert in college counseling and test preparation, we identified five key criteria that programs must meet in order to be considered. In fact, ePrep and Higher Scores Test Prep were removed from our previous list for not meeting the following standards.

Flexible scheduling and adaptable formats

You’re likely juggling other school and extracurricular activities, so you need an SAT prep course that fits your schedule. Our top picks are offered in multiple formats, including on-demand and live online sessions, and in-person instruction. We also evaluated offerings based on the length of the programs, from those that can be completed intensively in a few weeks, like Kaplan, to self-paced instruction you can tackle on your own time, like Magoosh.

Personalized instruction

SAT prep is not a one-size-fits-all deal. We sought out programs that give students personalized attention and preparation, including Testive, Prep Scholar, and Khan Academy. This includes study plans designed for your specific SAT needs, 1:1 tutoring, and instructor accessibility. We also reviewed programs’ content delivery methods and the test-taking strategies they teach to ensure that you find a prep course that matches your learning and testing styles.

Pricing and plans

SAT prep is an investment, and we want to help you get the most for your money. Several SAT prep programs have been analyzed to determine their cost per hour of instruction, their materials, such as practice tests and books, instructor expertise, and access to money-back guarantees. To ensure all students can access quality SAT prep services, we also examined free and low-cost programs, including Khan Academy and Magoosh.

Course materials

There’s more to SAT prep than just virtual or in-person classes. Valuable SAT prep programs give students access to a variety of materials and learning tools, including practice exams, prep books, question banks, flashcards, and more. We highlighted companies like Princeton Review and ePrep that include these valuable tools to help students learn necessary concepts and familiarize themselves with what to expect on the SAT.

Expert instructors and tutors

Having the right instructor guiding your SAT prep process can make a world of difference in your testing experience. We dug into the hiring practices for our top picks, including how many instructors and tutors companies employ and what qualifications the chosen instructors have. We also reviewed who designs lessons and course materials to ensure experts are behind the instructions students receive on-demand.

The Best SAT Prep Courses

Princeton Review – Best Overall

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The Princeton Review offers something for nearly every type of test-taker, which is why it’s our Best Overall pick. The Princeton Review provides multiple live programs, both online and in-person, a self-paced on-demand course, intensives, and 1:1 tutoring services, all developed over 40 years in the college prep space. Regardless of the package you choose, they include comprehensive lessons, practice exams, bonus material like ACT prep, and discounts for add-ons, like on-demand tutoring.

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The Princeton Review’s online interface is engaging and easy to navigate, with a welcome video and chatbot available to walk new students through the orientation process.

Students using The Princeton Review’s Self-Paced online program create a personalized study plan, with suggestions for schedules that work for each type of student.

All Princeton Review SAT prep courses give students access to required and optional practice exams, including single-section tests that allow students to work on specific areas for improvement.

Students can navigate online lessons by subject matter, strategy, and lesson type.

What We Like

Variety is The Princeton Review’s strongest selling point. Students who want a virtual classroom experience can choose between the Essentials course, which has 18 hours of live online instruction, and the 1400+ course, with 36 hours of instruction time. Both include practice tests, a year of access to online materials, hard copy materials, and student and parent portals.

For those who want intensive SAT prep, The Princeton Review offers a Summer Camp, which condenses the material covered in the Essentials course into a 2-week program. Conversely, for students who want to take their time, there’s the SAT Self-Paced course, which gives students a year of access to lessons, practice questions, and full-length practice exams. If self-paced students need extra assistance, they can access 10 hours of on-demand tutoring at the discounted price of $200.

Most Princeton Review SAT prep courses also include access to ACT review materials, which is a benefit for any students considering taking both standardized tests. Additionally, Princeton Review is the only SAT prep program on our list that offers in-person instruction (in select locations) as of publication.

What We Didn’t Like

The Princeton Review has a lot to offer, but it does come at a price. Their signature live instruction course, SAT 1400+, can cost as much as $2,199, which may place it out of reach of many students. There are money-back and score-improvement guarantees, but read the fine print carefully. In-person classes are available but are largely concentrated in metropolitan areas like New York and Los Angeles.

What Test Takers Are Saying

Users on Trustpilot give The Princeton Review 4.3 / 5 stars. 69% of its 1,972 reviews are “excellent.” Positive feedback on this site includes praise for The Princeton Review’s faculty, strategies, and student engagement. User reviews on Reddit did trend slightly more negative, as evidence that not every program is a good match for every student.


Program Price What You Get
SAT 1400+ $2,199
  • 36+ hours of live virtual or in-person classroom instruction
  • Customized homework assignments
  • 6 SAT practice tests
  • 24/7 on-demand tutoring
  • Unlimited access to SAT Advantage LiveOnline sessions
  • ACT prep resources
  • Guarantee of a 1400 or higher SAT score
Essentials $949
  • 18 hours of focused classroom time
  • 6 SAT practice tests
  • Unlimited access to SAT Advantage LiveOnline sessions
  • ACT prep resources
  • Money-back guarantee
Summer Camp $1,499 Expedited course with:

  • 18 hours of live instruction
  • 30 hours of guided practice and review
  • 6 SAT practice tests
  • Unlimited access to SAT Advantage LiveOnline sessions
  • ACT prep resources
  • Money-back guarantee
SAT Self-Paced $499
  • 1 year of access to video lessons, online drills, practice questions, and full-length practice tests
  • 10 hours of on-demand 1:1 tutoring for an additional $200
SAT 1500+ Tutoring $7,560
  • 18 hours of customized 1:1 tutoring
  • Match to a Digital SAT 1500+ Tutor
  • Practice questions and online drills
  • Unlimited access to SAT Advantage LiveOnline sessions
  • Digital course manual plus digital eBook materials
  • 6 SAT practice tests
  • Interactive score reports
  • Guarantee of a 1500 or higher SAT score


Khan Academy – Most Affordable

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Khan Academy stands out among SAT prep services for two reasons. It’s the official SAT prep program of the College Board, the organization that administers the SAT, and it’s completely free. Accessing SAT prep materials from Khan Academy is as simple as creating an account on their website. Students then have immediate and ongoing access to multiple resources, including video lessons, drill questions, and feedback.

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Khan Academy partners with the College Board to ensure prep materials are aligned with what is tested on the SAT.

There are 13 units for math and five for reading and writing.

Each unit includes lessons, quizzes, and a unit test. Khan Academy automatically tracks your proficiency and progress.

Each lesson includes reading materials, videos, and practice questions.

What We Like

Khan Academy is free, which removes one common access barrier to SAT prep. But just because Khan Academy is free doesn’t mean it’s not quality. Articles, videos, and thousands of practice exercises are provided, covering every skill evaluated in both the Math and Reading and Writing tests. Also, you can take quizzes, unit tests, and course challenges to ensure you master each skill before moving on.

This content is all organized in a simple, user-friendly dashboard. Khan Academy also has mobile apps for iOS and Android, so students can access their accounts on the go.

What We Didn’t Like

The key thing to note about Khan Academy is that it’s a completely self-guided program, meaning it’s best suited for motivated students who prefer to learn independently. While there’s a Help Center and Support Community on the website, there’s no instructor interaction or 1:1 tutoring available. This approach may not work for all students.

What Test Takers Are Saying

On Trustpilot, Khan Academy has 3.4 / 5 stars, with 62% of users rating the service “excellent.” However, because Khan Academy offers a variety of different courses, reviews are not necessarily for the SAT course specifically. On Reddit, one recommends Khan Academy as “the best free preparation” available, while another praises the service for being “amazing” and helping them raise their score by nearly 500 points.


Program Price What You Get
Khan Academy SAT Prep Free
  • Articles and videos covering every subject in the SAT
  • Thousands of practice exercises
  • Quizzes, unit tests, and course challenges
  • Mobile app for iOS/Android


Kaplan – Best Virtual Classroom Program

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Kaplan has been preparing standardized test takers for nearly 90 years, making it one of the most established SAT prep companies in the game. While Kaplan offers SAT prep in various formats, including a self-paced on-demand program, 1:1 tutoring, and in-person classes (currently suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic), its Live Online program is a stand-out for flexibility, content, and instructor interaction.

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We chose Kaplan as our Best Virtual Classroom program as it offers an affordable price for 18 hours of live instruction.

Kaplan offers multiple scheduling options, including morning, afternoon, and evening classes on weekdays and weekends.

The Live Online course includes nine two-hour classes and two practice tests.

What We Like

In Kaplan’s Live Online SAT prep course, students receive 18 hours of live instruction. Live Online classes are held throughout the academic year, so students can start prepping whenever they’re ready. Some classes meet multiple times per week for a short period, while others meet once a week over a 6-8-week timeframe.

Whatever the pace, the Live Online class is comprehensive, including lessons for both the Math and Reading and Writing tests. Students have the opportunity to take two practice exams as well.

A key benefit of the Live Online program is the instructor interaction. Each class is taught by one of Kaplan’s expert faculty, while another instructor is available via a private chat feature to answer questions during class. An upgrade to Live Online Plus, which includes three hours of 1:1 tutoring, is available for students who need extra support.

What We Didn’t Like

Students who live in Mountain or Pacific time zones should be mindful of Live Online class start times, which are all listed on the website in Eastern time.

Unlike other virtual classroom prep programs, Kaplan doesn’t give Live Online students extended access to any prep materials. Students only have access to the program until the next official SAT date. Kaplan students must sign up for the Unlimited Prep program for continued access.

What Test-Takers Are Saying

Kaplan has a 4.7-star rating on Trustpilot; 74% of Kaplan’s 5,492 reviews are “excellent.” In reviews, users indicate their satisfaction with the course’s comprehensiveness, thoroughness, and instructor support. Among those that weren’t satisfied with the course, chief complaints include a lack of personalization and long class sessions.


Program Price What You Get
Live Online $799
  • 18 hours of live instruction
  • 2+ teachers per class
  • 2 practice tests
  • Digital performance dashboard
Live Online Plus $1,099 Everything in Live Online, plus:

  • 3 hours of 1:1 tutoring
  • Digital SAT Practice Book
On-Demand $199
  • 6-month access to a self-paced program
  • Over 30 instructional videos taught by Kaplan experts
  • Practice questions and quizzes
  • 2 practice tests
Unlimited Prep $1,999
  • Unlimited access to all Kaplan SAT, ACT, AP, and PSAT prep courses through December of student’s senior year of high school


PrepScholar – Best On-Demand Program

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Harvard graduates Allen Chang and Fred Zhang, both of whom earned perfect SAT scores, started PrepScholar in 2013 to share their successful strategies. Since then, PrepScholar has evolved into a key player in SAT prep, with a robust, customizable on-demand program, virtual classes, and tutoring. Their Complete SAT Online Prep stands out among self-paced programs for tackling basic and high-level skills over more than 200 hours of video and text lessons, detailed answer explanations, and 4 practice tests.

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The average Prep Scholar client is able to improve their composite SAT score by 180 points, with the top 25% improving their score by 370 points or more. This service is slightly better at improving math scores than English scores.

Prep Scholar focuses on 45 skills that you will need to know in order to earn a high SAT score.

Video lessons thoroughly explain all the topics that will be covered on the test.

What We Like

Students who want a comprehensive SAT prep program that is personalized but flexible should take a closer look at PrepScholar’s Complete SAT Online Prep course.

PrepScholar’s flagship program starts with a diagnostic assessment that helps PrepScholar tailor preparation to meet students where they are. PrepScholar analyzes questions and test responses as students progress through the program to adapt future lessons to the student’s increasing proficiency. PrepScholar also helps guide remote students with detailed lesson plans, including video and text lessons, practice questions and quizzes, and answer reviews.

Students who enroll in the Complete SAT Online Prep course have access to the program for an entire year for $397, which is approximately $33 per month. During that time, there’s a significant amount of content students can take advantage of, including more than 4,100 practice questions.

PrepScholar backs all of this with a 160-point score improvement guarantee. For students who need more individualized help, PrepScholar also offers instructor-led classes and 1-on-1 online tutoring add-ons.

What We Didn’t Like

The sheer volume of material PrepScholar includes in the Complete SAT Online Prep program is a double-edged sword, bordering on an overwhelming number of lessons and questions to complete. The drills may be useful for students studying over several months. However, those with less time may benefit from a self-paced program such as Magoosh.

What Test-Takers Are Saying

PrepScholar has 4.5 / 5 stars on Trustpilot and 4.6 / 5 stars on Facebook Reviews. Positive reviews focus on the program’s flexibility and personalization. Unsatisfied customers noted the strictness of the company’s money-back guarantee and customer service issues.


Program Price What You Get
Complete SAT Online Prep $397 1 year of access to:

  • 210+ hours of video content
  • 4,100+ practice questions
  • Detailed answer explanations for all questions
  • Diagnostic quiz
  • 4 practice tests
Complete Online SAT Prep + Admissions Bootcamp $595 Everything in the Complete SAT Online Prep course, plus:

  • Admissions Bootcamp lessons
Instructor Led Classes + Complete Online SAT Prep $895 Everything in the Complete SAT Online Prep course, plus:

  • Admissions Bootcamp lessons
  • Small, interactive classes with a live instructor
1-on-1 Online Tutoring + Complete Online SAT Prep $995+ Everything in the Complete SAT Online Prep course, plus:

  • Admissions Bootcamp lessons
  • 4-54 hours of 1:1 tutoring


Magoosh – Best for Extended Prep Time

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Magoosh believes SAT prep should be easy, accessible, and flexible. That’s why their self-paced, on-demand Premium program is ideal for students who have an extended period of time to prepare. Premium students get 12 months of access to “bite-sized” lessons and Magoosh’s deep library of practice questions, videos, tests, and more. For those needing additional help, Magoosh also offers an On-Demand Classes option with 16 hours of live virtual instruction.

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When students sign up for Magoosh, they’re prompted to enter their anticipated SAT testing date so that the program can create a customized study plan for them.

We like Magoosh’s simple interface and short video lessons, which allow students to study even if they only have a small window of time.

A user-friendly dashboard helps Magoosh students stay on track by keeping all progress benchmarks, lessons, and resources in one accessible place.

Students can take practice exams to simulate the actual SAT testing experience.

What We Like

As far as value goes, Magoosh stands out among SAT prep programs. Students can get 12 months of access to the Premium self-paced program for $129 or a little over $10 per month. This makes it one of the more affordable options for self-paced prep compared to programs like The Princeton Review ($499) and PrepScholar ($397).

For their money, students get a self-guided program that empowers them to learn independently through personalized schedules, text reminders, and lessons that can be completed in as little as 20 minutes per day. Students can access lessons via Magoosh’s user-friendly website or mobile app. Magoosh teaches math, reading, and writing topics via video lessons, practice questions with explanations, and practice tests.

A notable feature of Magoosh’s self-paced program is that students have email access to tutors for personalized assistance, so if they get stuck at any point, help is available. Magoosh also offers a 100-point score improvement guarantee and a free 7-day trial.

What We Didn’t Like

As with all self-paced programs, Magoosh requires that students be motivated to show up and complete their lessons. Students who need the extra accountability of a structured class and instructor guidance might be better served signing up for Magoosh’s Premium + On-Demand Classes program or seeking live online classes like those offered by Kaplan or Prep Expert. While Magoosh has practice tests built into their preparation schedule, they aren’t official College Board practice tests, leaving room for a degree of difference in difficulty and content.

What Test Takers Are Saying

Magoosh has 4.3 / 5 stars on Trustpilot and 4.9 / 5 stars on Facebook. According to one user, Magoosh is a “fantastic education platform. The incremental learning process was very helpful in setting a baseline, and the brilliant app allowed for mobile study.” Another user details how Magoosh helped them build confidence and overcome anxiety about test-taking.


Program Price What You Get
Premium $129/12 months
  • Over 1,750 practice questions with video/text explanations
  • 200+ video lessons
  • 3 practice tests
  • Study schedules
  • Email assistance from tutors
  • 100-point score guarantee
  • Mobile app (iOS and Android)
Premium + On-Demand Classes $399/12 months Everything in the Premium program, plus:

  • 16 hours of live virtual instruction


Prep Expert – Best for Limited Prep Time

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A relative newcomer to the world of SAT prep, Prep Expert offers several different options for SAT study, designed around founder Dr. Shaan Patel’s strategy-based approach. For students who have several weeks to prepare, Prep Expert offers live online classes that last 6-8 weeks and a self-paced on-demand course. We chose their unique Weekend Review course as our pick for students who have limited time and need to brush up on their skills and strategies before tackling the SAT.

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Inside Prep Expert’s virtual classroom, instructors break down SAT questions, demonstrating problem-solving strategies and answering questions about content and methodology.

Prep Expert’s user-friendly interface makes it easy to find the right course for your particular needs.

Prep Expert founder Dr. Shaan Patel earned a perfect SAT score.

What We Like

Even if students only have a limited amount of time before taking the SAT, that doesn’t mean they should forgo preparation altogether. Prep Expert offers an intensive Weekend Review for last-minute learners each weekend prior to scheduled SAT dates.

This intensive online course offers 12 hours of SAT prep over two days. There are four three-hour sessions, with one hour-long break each day. The comprehensive curriculum covers all SAT subjects, including math, reading, and writing, as well as test-taking strategies and tips.

Prep Expert’s skilled instructors break down SAT practice questions, demonstrating hacks that allow students to solve problems and answer questions quickly and correctly. Learning in a virtual classroom means students can engage with faculty in real-time and ask their burning SAT content and strategy questions before sitting for the actual test.

A perk of Prep Expert is that they regularly offer discount codes for all their courses, including the Weekend Review. This can help put their learning options within the financial reach of more students.

What We Didn’t Like

Students participating in Prep Expert’s Weekend Review course get just that — one weekend of SAT content and strategy review, with no additional access to materials, lessons, or practice tests. This likely means it’s not the right solution for students who need or want a deep dive into SAT prep with a lot of time to process the material. There’s also no money-back guarantee for the Weekend Review course.

What Test Takers Are Saying

Prep Expert’s Trustpilot rating is 4.6 / 5 stars, and their Facebook rating is 4.2 / 5 stars. Users praise Prep Expert’s instructors for being engaging and effective. Says one student, “I feel better equipped to study and improve my score after learning and practicing the tips and strategies, and I have even started using what I learned in non-SAT work.”


Program Price What You Get
Weekend Review $699
  • 12 hours of live instruction covering all SAT subjects, as well as test-taking strategies
8-Week Capstone Class $1,699
  • 14 classes over the course of 8 weeks covering all SAT subjects, as well as test-taking strategies
  • 6 practice exams
  • Homework assignments
  • Access to Weekend Review course
6-Week Flagship Class $1,199
  • 12 classes over the course of 6 weeks covering all SAT subjects, as well as test-taking strategies
  • 6 practice exams
  • Homework assignments
Self-Paced Video $899
  • One year of access to 30+ hours of video lessons


Testive – Best for 1:1 Coaching

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Testive’s learning software adapts to each student. After taking their diagnostic test, a student’s ability scores are established to show what needs to be worked on. Whenever students get a question wrong, they are provided with instant feedback along with a video that shows how to solve the problem.

Students have access to a scoreboard for tracking their progress, and all feedback is shared on the Parent Portal as well. And whenever they need help, they can consult one of Testive’s expert tutors.


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Testive’s process starts with a free consultation to help determine a personalized plan of study.

We like Testive’s simple interface, which keeps everything organized and easy to find.

Testive’s timed practice tests replicate what it is actually like to take the SAT.

Testive has over 20 highly experienced tutors available, each scoring at least 1400 on the SAT. 

What We Like

What really sets Testive apart is their live tutoring services. Testive’s tutors are exceptionally well-qualified, and they are available for any questions or problem areas that the student needs to address. Testive even has experts on hand who can help with issues outside the SAT, such as strategies for submitting applications and writing college essays.

What We Didn’t Like

A notable drawback of Testive is that it’s on the expensive end of the spectrum — depending on how much support a student needs, $250 per hour can really add up. There’s also no score improvement guarantee, making it a somewhat risky investment.

What Test Takers Are Saying

On Trustpilot, Testive has 4.7 / 5 stars. 94% of the 90 reviews are “excellent.” Parents and students alike praise Testive’s tutors for their encouragement, friendliness, and personalized attention. Said one student, “The time I spent working with my tutor not only impacted my SAT scores but also gave me great insight on how to move forward into college. This is the best tutor I’ve ever had.”


Program Price What You Get
Custom Tutoring $250 per hour
  • Adaptive learning platform
  • Textbook that covers all content on the test
  • Thousands of practice questions
  • Up to 8 practice tests with detailed score reporting
  • Test review session with a test prep expert
  • Regular check-ins with an expert tutor
  • Flexible, 60-90 minute weekly meetings with your tutor
Tutoring/Advising Flex Package Custom quote Everything in the Custom Tutoring program, plus:

  • 1:1 customized application timeline and strategy planning
  • College essay advising and revisions
  • Extracurricular and resume development

What to Consider Before Signing Up for SAT Test Prep

Calculate prep time

Our resident test prep expert, college counselor Dana Marvin, recommends about 1-2 hours per week of studying for the three months leading up to the SAT. “This is a good amount of time for students to get a feel for the questions as well as understand the strategies for successfully taking this test,” Marvin says. Marvin warns against over-preparation and burnout, especially in the days leading up to the exam. Marvin recommends programs that focus on strategies, like Prep Expert’s Weekend Review, for students with limited preparation time rather than a dive deep into the content.

Consider your learning style

How do you learn best? This will influence which type of prep program is a good fit for you. For example, auditory and kinesthetic learners may do better in a virtual classroom like Kaplan’s. Visual and reading/writing learners may prefer a self-guided program like Magoosh. Marvin says that online reviews and word-of-mouth recommendations can help students learn more about teaching methods. She also reminds students that course content is important. “The SAT is designed for people who know how to take this type of exam,” she says. The best prep programs equip students with a toolbox of test-taking strategies.”

Compare costs

SAT prep courses run the gamut from free to several thousand dollars. But a higher price tag doesn’t necessarily translate to higher quality, Marvin says. The most important thing is finding a program that meets your specific needs and your budget. Marvin recommends students use Khan Academy, which is free, either exclusively or as a supplement. “Khan Academy really helps students understand why they got an answer wrong and learn from their mistakes,” she says. While many programs offer a money-back or score-improvement guarantee, Marvin encourages families to read the fine print before committing thousands of dollars to one of these programs.

SAT Test Prep Frequently Asked Questions

What are the important dates for taking the SAT test?

For the 2023-24 academic year, the SAT testing dates, as well as registration deadlines, are listed below. To register for the SAT, visit the College Board website. SAT scores are typically released about 13 days after the test date.

Test Date* Registration Deadline Deadline for Changes, Regular Cancellation, and Late Registration
Oct. 7, 2023 Sep. 7, 2023 Sep. 26, 2023
Nov. 4, 2023 Oct. 5, 2023 Oct. 24, 2023
Dec. 2, 2023 Nov. 2, 2023 Nov. 21, 2023
Mar. 9, 2024 (Digital) Feb. 23, 2024 Feb. 27, 2024
May 4, 2024 (Digital) Apr. 19, 2024 Apr. 23, 2024
June 1, 2024 (Digital) May 16, 2024 May 21, 2024

*Test dates are accurate as of September 12, 2023.

When should I take the SATs?

Students can start taking the SATs as early as the 8th grade. However, we recommend that students wait until their junior year of high school to take the SATs for the first time. This timetable has two advantages. By the midpoint of junior year, most students will have gained the math, verbal, and writing skills and concepts covered by the SAT. It also gives students time to retake the test (and do a prep course) if necessary, either during the summer or fall of senior year of high school.

How many times should I take the SAT?

Students can take the SAT as many times as they want. Most students need two to three tests to achieve their desired score. Spreading out SATs over the course of junior and early senior year of high school will allow you to get a baseline score, spend time focusing on areas where improvement is needed, and retake the test before you need to start your college applications. High school seniors applying to college for the following fall should take their SAT for the final time no later than December of senior year.

Are there accommodations for disabilities?

Yes, the College Board can make accommodations for disabilities. However, students requesting accommodations must get prior approval. This approval process can take up to seven weeks, so submitting your accommodation request as early as possible is important. Approved accommodations will be listed on your admission ticket. If accommodations are made without approval, the SAT score will be canceled.

Where can I find practice tests?

SAT practice tests are similar in format and content to the actual SAT test. Practice exams help students familiarize themselves with the types of questions the SAT asks, and how long it will take them to complete the test. Most SAT prep courses include practice tests, but the College Board also offers several downloadable SAT practice tests on its website. The College Board also offers answer keys, answer explanations, and scoring sheets for practice exams.

How early should I prepare?

The amount of prep time needed depends on a few factors, including how much time you have to dedicate to SAT prep, specific areas you’re covering, and your learning style. For most students, starting prep about two months before the testing date is sufficient. However, starting early may be beneficial if you struggle with focusing or processing material. If you have less than two months, look for programs like College Prep Genius, which offers a three-week bootcamp, or Khan Academy, which is self-paced.

How many practice tests should I take before the actual exam?

There’s no magic number of practice tests to take prior to the actual SAT. A practice test can help you set a baseline for score expectations and help you determine how much and what kind of prep you may need. Regular practice exams in the weeks before the actual test can help you stay focused, track progress, identify areas of improvement, and build up your stamina for the real deal.

How long are most SAT prep courses?

The length of SAT prep courses can vary from single-day quick-prep courses to self-paced programs that students have a year to complete. Most live in-person or online courses run for 4-8 weeks, depending on how many times per week the class meets. Many programs, like the Princeton Review, allow students to continue accessing some or all course materials after the official class has ended.

Is SAT prep worth it?

Generally, yes — as long as students are willing to do the work. Simply signing up for a prep course won’t have a significant impact unless you complete lessons, take practice exams, ask questions, and apply feedback. Many SAT prep services offer a score guarantee in which students can request a refund or retake the course for free if they don’t achieve a specific score. This lowers the risk and helps improve a student’s return on investment in the course.

How much does SAT prep cost?

The cost of SAT prep courses varies from free to over $2,000. The cost of an SAT prep course depends on factors like course provider, delivery method, materials provided, length of access, and availability of 1:1 instruction. When considering how much to spend on an SAT prep course, think about what specifically you need. A free or low-cost self-paced program may be sufficient for students who want a simple refresher on basic math and verbal concepts. Investing in a more robust course might be worth it if you’re looking for a significant score increase or individualized attention. Many services also offer discounts or sales, which can help offset the cost. For specific program pricing, please refer to the individual program descriptions above.

Do I need to take the SAT for college admissions?

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many colleges eliminated requirements for standardized tests as part of the admissions process. Some switched to test-optional policies, which gave students the choice to submit scores if they wanted. As of 2024, a growing number of colleges are returning to standardized test requirements for future admissions. Whether or not you take the SAT (or ACT) depends largely on whether the schools you are considering require these tests for admission. Review the testing policies at your potential colleges and speak to an admissions counselor for clarification if necessary. If you’re considering test-optional schools, there may be benefits to taking the SAT and submitting your scores, particularly if they are very strong.

What is the digital SAT?

As of spring 2024, the College Board has begun administering the SAT in a digital format instead of as a pencil-and-paper test. While many aspects of the SAT have remained the same, including the type of content on the exam, the new digital SAT is shorter and can be completed on a laptop or tablet. Students must still register and go to a physical site to complete the exam. More information about the digital SAT is available through the College Board.

Additional Resources

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