College Test Prep at Study Hut Consulting

March 21st, 2019

Young people feel pressure in two dimensions: quality and time. Students, particularly AP students, feel that they must be the best within a finite amount of time called childhood. Try though we must to alleviate their burdens, there are a few cases in life where the pressure is real. Einstein’s theory of relativity predicted just such a union between the dimensions of pressure: college test prep. 

College prep at study hut consulting

Totally joking about Einstein’s theory (we offer AP Physics prep on his actual theory). But our team of nerds at Study Hut Consulting has a serious answer to the conundrum of the SAT and ACT. To master quality, we respond with one-on-one tutoring that’s tailored to each student’s strengths and weaknesses. To defeat time, we answer with experience. Our homemade courses are administered via online portal and workbook, achieving the constant feedback of online grading and the realism of paper tests. Each student progresses through our course in a unique order with unique emphasis, and completes many practice tests and problems along the way. As Bill Murray taught us in Groundhog Day, the easiest way to get a problem right is to have done it before. 

Speaking of past experiences — as a student, I participated in Princeton Review’s SAT course. Having already scored very highly on their practice test, I was placed into the small, elite group that was likely to score perfect on the real deal. I was one of the lucky ones. But why should only those students with high first-time scores receive good tutoring? At Study Hut Consulting, we give every student one-on-one VIP treatment, regardless of their first attempt. We believe in the process. A student starting at 900 and one beginning at 1300 can both achieve hundreds of points of improvement in our college test prep. As tutors, we have the power to make both of those kids’ dreams come true. That’s why we do business.

But don’t take our word for it. We encourage our kids to do their due diligence, and we’d love for you to do the same. Stop on by for a free practice test and free consultation. You can reach us at (310) 379-1400 or practice those fill-in-the-blanks skills on our Contact Form, below. I’ll sign off this post with a College Test Prep Prayer:

God grant me the serenity

To guess on questions I cannot answer;

Courage to answer the ones I can;

And wisdom to know the difference.

Free Practice SAT and ACT Exams

August 18th, 2016

Practice SAT and ACT Exams

Study Hut Tutoring offers free practice SAT and ACT exams. It is important to know that tackling the SAT or ACT can be a daunting challenge for many students. Performing to the best of one’s availability is vital in order to strive for acceptance to increasingly competitive colleges and universities. Students are often unaware of how to effectively prepare for the SAT or ACT. Rest assured, Study Hut Tutoring in El Segundo is here to offer guidance and support through tailored test prep tutoring and free SAT and ACT practice tests.

In order to provide our students with specialized, tailored test ACT and SAT tutoring sessions, we encourage our students to complete a full length, free SAT or ACT practice test. We then critically analyze the results and prepare a tutoring plan tailored to our students, emphasizing focus on areas of potential improvement. As we move through scheduled tutoring sessions, students will return to take additional free SAT or ACT practice tests, which allows us to check our progress in real time and shift focus when the need is indicated by performance.

In addition to reviewing specific concepts and learning new strategies and test taking techniques, exercising to build test taking endurance is crucial. The SAT and ACT are each about four hours long. No matter how you cut it, four hours is a long time to maintain focus, flex cognitive abilities, and perform at a consistently high level. By completing free SAT or ACT practice tests, Study Hut students develop their ability to persevere through mental fatigue. Without a simulated experience made possible by full length practice tests, improving endurance is difficult, and Study Hut is pleased to offer this service to our students.

The fall SAT and ACT are approaching quickly, and here at Study Hut we are eager to see the performance of our prepared students and to observe them flourish. Having completed a personalized test prep plan, in conjunction with effective independent study and the completion of multiple SAT or ACT practice tests, our students will be confident and prepared to rise to the challenge on test day and endure through fatigue and difficulty.

Free SAT ACT Practice Tests

July 22nd, 2016

Study Hut Tutoring offers free SAT ACT practice tests. The South Bay is filled with a variety of companies that offer training for the SAT, ACT, ISEE, HSPT, SSAT, GRE, LSAT, and every other kind of test you can imagine. Some offer just group classes, others do one-on-one. Some will come to your house, while many will hold lessons in their office. Curriculums change, strategies differ, and all of them have their pros and cons. However, one thing cannot be ignored no matter what kind of training you seek: Make sure you are given plenty of full length practice tests!

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Whether you are training for a test or preparing for a marathon, you cannot adequately improve unless you first know where you are starting. For test training, it is imperative that you take an actual certified test (whichever one you are preparing for) so you get a good sense of what the test is, and we get an accurate reading of where you are starting. At Study Hut, we call this a Diagnostic Test. Armed with this report of your greatest strengths and most glaring weaknesses, we can create a tailored curriculum and study plan that fits YOU! This will mean a much more efficient use of both our times, and maximize our results.

Throughout your training, it is paramount to take officially sanctioned, full length practice tests every few weeks. Not only will this help us track your progress toward your ultimate score goal, but it gives you a safe arena to practice the concepts and strategies that we have been teaching you. It’s like sparing for a boxer, or a fully-padded practice for a football player! We can then analyze your performance, question by question, to see where your breakdowns were. This “game tape” will then be used to show you the benefits of what we are doing, and show you the dangers of falling back into old habits.

Long-story-longer, any training regimen, be it academic or athletic, needs to be anchored with an initial Diagnostic Test, and a healthy amount of Practice Tests. They are the only way to ensure broad and efficient training, and a high quality result. Study Hut offers free diagnostic and practice tests for every standardized test you can imagine. To sign up for one, just fill out a contact form on the right, and a manager will call you shortly.
Happy Training!

A Timeline for ACT or SAT Prep

February 23rd, 2016

As we move into the spring of 2016, a lot of students and parents start wondering-should I be preparing for standardized tests? Do I take it in my junior year or senior year? Should I use the summer to prepare? At Study Hut, we can help you make sense of the chaos and create a timeline for ACT or SAT Prep.

When are the tests offered?

The tests are offered throughout the fall, winter and spring:

ACT                                                                       SAT 

February 6, 2016                                              March 5, 2016

April 9, 2016                                                     May 7, 2016

June 11, 2016                                                    June 4, 2016

 

September 10, 2016                                        October 1, 2016

October 22, 2016                                             November 5, 2016

December 10, 2016                                         December 3, 2016

                                                                           January 28, 2017

February 11, 2017                                           March 11, 2017

April 8, 2017                                                    May 6, 2017

June 10, 2017                                                   June 3, 2017

 

So what’s the first step in the Timeline for ACT or SAT Prep?

At the Study Hut, the first step in test prep is always to take a free, full length practice test. These are generally offered every other Saturday throughout the year, and take about 4 hours. After the student takes the practice test, we will grade and evaluate the results and then set up a free consultation with the student and their parents to go over the results and our evaluation.

How long should I prep?

From there, test prep is usually a 4-6 month process. Here are three general timelines we recommend. (Green=start test prep, Blue=take the test)

Timeline for ACT or SAT Prep

The key is to put in the time when you have the time.

If you play a sport, it’s best not to try to cram prep in during season (although increasingly, sports are a year round commitment, there is usually a ‘slower’ period in which test prep would fit best). If you carry a heavy workload during the year, summer would be a better time.
At Study Hut, we can help you carve out the perfect prep schedule that fits YOU. Fill out the contact form to the right, or call/email us today to schedule your free practice test to get the ball rolling.

A Year in Review for PV and RB

June 30th, 2015

It has been yet another successful year at the Study Hut in Redondo Beach.  We saw improved grades, great SAT and ACT scores, and admissions to awesome colleges all over the US.  From the schools in Palos Verdes (PVHS and Peninsula), to RUHSD, and all the Torrance schools in between (South and West mostly), all our beloved Hut kiddos have truly set the bar in the South Bay.

For instance, Darrian went from getting D’s in her freshman year, to getting B’s this year after getting routine subject tutoring. Thomas was able to raise his worst subject, Spanish, from an F to a B! We were also ecstatic to see Austin raise all of his grades to A’s and B’s this year with tutoring twice a week after getting straight C’s last year. Austin’s mother has told us that her relationship with Austin has improved dramatically since they no longer have fights over his grades anymore! Connor stunned his mom and brought his tutor to tears of joy when he earned straight A’s both semesters of his junior year after receiving straight C’s during his Freshman and Sophomore years.

Many of our students demonstrated exceptional improvement on their SAT and ACT scores. Connor raised his ACT score from a 20 to a 29 in just three months after coming in for ACT tutoring twice a week. Sophia juggled her hectic life of AP classes, club soccer, and numerous school clubs by coming in once a week for four months for ACT tutoring. Sophia raised her score from a 29 to a 35, which secured her early admission to one of the most prestigious academic institutions in Massachusetts, Wellesley College. Shivani not only scored an outstanding 2300 on her SAT, but used test preparation at Study Hut to ace her SAT 2 tests as well in Math and English.

We could not be more proud of the incredible college acceptances our students earned after getting college guidance with their tutors. Olivia was not only admitted to every college she applied to, but got into her dream school, USC, to pursue studies in Marine Biology. Kelley was accepted to the incredibly competitive music industry program at USC, which only admits thirty students annually. Hayley will be attending one of the most impacted schools in California, San Diego State, which has been her dream school since she was in sixth grade. Eliza and Mollie will both be attending the most impacted college in the country, UCLA, in the fall.This Year's Favorite Books Tutor Appreciation was high this year SAT/ACT/College Success this Year

High School Standardized Test Prep

April 20th, 2015

With the competition for college admissions getting more and more competitive by the year, high scores on the SAT and ACT standardized tests are becoming increasingly important.  At Study Hut, we offer SAT and ACT small group classes that are limited to no more than ten students, as well as private one-on-one tutoring.  For students who get easily distracted in a group environment or for those who just want extra practice, one-on-one tutoring is a great route.  

Melanie came in once a week to work with her tutor Charlsey.  She quickly realized that the time she was meeting was too late, and she was too tired to focus properly.  She switched her time to earlier in the week with Laura.  Laura and Melanie covered basic strategies for the critical reading, math, and writing sections, as well as the general structure for an SAT essay.  She took a diagnostic test a few weeks into her test preparation package and she had already gone up one hundred points.  

Allie worked with her tutor Charlsey to work on raising her SAT score.  She originally was debating between the SAT and ACT and ended up settling on the SAT.  She had good scores but wanted to work on fine tuning some of her weaker topics.  She came in every week and did her online homework.  She took regular diagnostics to see how her score was rising.  She took the real SAT and saw her score on the math section improve by over one hundred points!  She plans on taking another SAT after she completes her test preparation package so she can improve her scores further.    

What are the SAT IIs?

February 13th, 2015

By the time you get to high school you have already heard all about the SAT and the ACT. But what about the SAT II Subject Tests? Many colleges require them, but people do not seem to talk about them as much as the other two tests. So, what exactly are the SAT IIs?

 

The SAT IIs are hour-long tests that focus on specific topics. Most tests are multiple-choice. For the language tests, there is a listening portion. The cool thing about the SAT II is that you can choose which subjects you take. That means that you can pick the subjects you know best and feel most comfortable in. Even if the college you are applying to does not require SAT IIs, they can still be helpful. Getting a great score on an SAT II can set you apart from other applicants applying to the same program. Doing well on certain SAT IIs can also count for placement in higher-level classes than you would be placed in without an SAT II.

 

You can take up to three SAT IIs in one day, but you may take just one as well. The subjects on the SAT II are covered in a deeper context than on the regular SAT. You will need to fully grasp concepts instead of just having broad overarching knowledge of the topic. Unlike the regular SAT, you should not wait until your junior or senior years to take the SAT II. You should take it after the class you have taken that corresponds with the topic you are picking for the SAT II. That way the majority of the information will be fresh in your head and you have a greater chance for success!

Study Hut SAT Success

January 8th, 2015

Emily came in to Study Hut looking to raise her SAT score.  She had done a few SAT prep sessions before, but not consistently and was not happy with her current SAT score.  She knew that she could do better.   We created a custom plan of action for Emily so that she would be completely prepared before her next SAT.

 

She started to come in once to twice per week.  During her sessions, we would go through each concept on the test and make sure that it made total sense before moving on to the next one.  We also went over the best SAT strategies so that she could beat the test, and not be tricked by any trap answers to questions that she knew the answers to.  Between sessions, she had homework assignments reviewing the material that she had just learned, as well as weekly quizzes to not only test her knowledge, but to get her familiar with using the SAT strategies in action.  After we had covered all the material that would be on the test, we started doing practice test after practice test after practice test.  These were timed and without help, just like on the real SAT.  She got progressively better with each test that we ran through.  Finally, she took her final SAT and the results were amazing! She took the test and scored above a 1900.  She was much more confident with her score going into the college application process and cannot wait to hear back from all her schools!

Tips for Acing the SAT

November 7th, 2014

Practice Tests

Take as many practice tests as you possibly can! The general types of questions on the SAT are usually very similar to previous tests, although the passages that you are being asked to answer questions on will differ. This will help you become familiar with the format of the questions on the test, and what specifically they are asking for. It really helps to recognize these patterns on the more difficult questions!

Go in With a Strategy

Every person’s strategy will be different for the SAT depending on his or her strengths. There are a few general things to keep in mind that are applicable to all students. First, remember that there is a guessing penalty on the SAT. Unlike the ACT, the SAT takes off one quarter of a point for every incorrect guess. It is usually not in your best interest to answer every single question on the SAT. If you can narrow it down to two answers that seem like they can work, it may be worth it to try and guess, but if you have no idea what the question is asking you should skip it.

Be Prepared

It would be a total bummer to go through all your test preparation and then have your score be affected because your calculator died or you didn’t have a good eraser. Make sure to always bring a back up calculator and all the supplies/identification you need on test day.     If you haven’t started preparing for the SAT, come take a diagnostic practice test at Study Hut! We can figure out a personalized package and program to get you your best score!

Top 10 Reasons The New SAT Will Still Be Tough

March 26th, 2014
Top 10 Reasons The New SAT Will Still Be Tough

The College Board recently announced that the 2016 SAT will have several important changes. While on the surface some of these changes may seem to make the test “easier,” here are some reasons why you’ll still need to practice, practice, practice.

10. You may have heard that the College Board is changing the SAT to get rid of obscure “SAT words” and thought that meant you could throw away all your flash cards. Think again! There’s no magic list of words that won’t be tested, and they will still test on words that will come up repeatedly in college work, such as “empirical,” or “synthesis.”

9. Along the same lines, each SAT will feature historical documents for your analysis, such as letters by Martin Luther King Jr. and the Declaration of Independence. Do you know what “Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes'” means? That’s a direct quote from the Declaration of Independence, which also features vocabulary such as “endowed,” “usurpations,” and “arbitrary.”

8. The penalty for wrong answers may be gone, but you’ll still need to focus and manage your time wisely to get as many questions right as you can.

7. The days of finding the answer for a reading comp passage right in the text are potentially gone. Instead, questions will feature graphs and additional information you’ll need to use to analyze an issue and come to a conclusion for your answer.

6. There will be more diverse reading passages from different subjects, including more of a focus on science, that are designed to reflect college-level work.

5. The math section will involve multiple steps to find a solution, and the questions will be presented in real world contexts. Get ready for a whole lot of word problem practice!

4. The College Board announcement stated that the new exam will focus on three main areas in the math section: Problem Solving/Data Analysis, Passport to Advanced Math, and the Heart of Algebra. If that doesn’t sound very straightforward, you’re probably right! The test preparers want to see your familiarity with subjects such as ratios, percentages, proportions, linear equations and systems, and complex equations.

3. The Writing portion has been replaced by the new Essay section, which is designed to mimic a college-level writing assignment. You’ll need to analyze the text, come up with an argument, and support with evidence from the passage using clear, persuasive sentences. The essay is currently optional, but some schools may require it.

2. On the bright side, one change that won’t make the exam harder in and of itself is that it is now offered digitally as well as on paper. However, even if you’re more comfortable taking an exam on your computer, you’ll have to make the judgment call of whether it’s worth the risk of tech issues.

1. It’s still the SAT! It’s a 4+ hour long exam, with math problems, reading comprehension, ands writing that is a large part of your college application process. None of the new changes change the fact that you’ll need to work hard and practice to get your best score.