ACT Prep and Tutoring in St. Louis

Admission to a highly competitive college has never been more difficult. Inundated with thousands of applications, top universities accept less than one in five applicants and elite universities around one in ten applicants. Given the high academic record of their applicant pool, colleges rely on the ACT to filter out the students most likely to succeed on their campus. Not only is admission an important reason to score well on the ACT, but scholarships and financial aid are also dependent on it as well. The higher a student scores, the more likely the student is to get into a good school, and the more likely it is for that student to get offered a decent amount of money off of tuition. This means that there is an incredibly high amount of performance pressure placed on students. How does someone perform well on something? Preparation, and a lot of it.  It is an “open secret” that students need to prepare for the ACT in order to score high. This should come as little surprise – students spend time studying for chapter tests and finals at school, and the ACT is a big test. The real question is how to prepare.

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Best ACT Test Prep Methods

We find that the least successful method of ACT Test preparation is a short series of large classes. Students learn too differently to design a class that can address the individual testing needs of a diverse group of teenagers. Another method that students sometimes turn to is simply taking practices test alone. While these tests are useful, a student usually cannot fully grasp what it is they are doing wrong. They might learn a bit more about certain science or math concepts, but maybe the root of the issue is that they do not know the best way to read a graph. This is when having someone sitting by their side would be really important because that person can notice and help teach them the tricks of the trade. The best method of ACT test preparation is in one-on-one settings with an instructor who has the ability and experience to identify different learning styles and translate years of test analysis into straightforward lessons customized to the strengths and needs of the individual student. To put it plainly, when it comes to learning everyone is different and individualized attention can make a world of difference.

Students and parents alike mistakenly believe anyone can prepare for the ACT in a short period of time with minimal effort. But real success on the ACT requires sustained commitment to preparation. Students will retain more information, gain more confidence and comfort and deliver higher scores if they work on preparation on a regular basis over an extended stretch of time.

The ACT is a backward-looking test. It is designed to measure how well students have mastered basic skills in reading comprehension, mathematics, grammar, and science. It builds time as a necessary component of the test. Preparing for the SAT requires a different mindset and discipline than the ACT. And yet, we encourage students to take both tests because students tend to favor one test over another, and also colleges prefer to see a student show initiative in sitting for both tests.

Our ACT Test Prep Approach

Here at Mackler Associates, we understand exactly what the ACT entails and have the tools and resources to help students understand it as well. First of all, we want to see your student succeed, and students can tell this, which makes them want to succeed too. Second, we cater the individual to a standardized test, something that is essential to success but can be an incredibly difficult task. We have worked with hundreds of students with vastly different abilities and profiles, and yet at the end of the program, these students see success and real results. Visit the College Prep Case Studies to see how very different types of students worked with us to meet their ACT test goals.

In our performance-based world, we try to measure success objectively, and that means testing. Starting in elementary school and extending to graduate school, students face an alphabet soup of tests – ISEE, SSAT, SAT, ACT, GRE, GMAT, LSAT, MCAT. Consequently, many students feel a general, continuing and growing sense of unease about testing. Some feel anxious. Some express outright panic. That’s where we come in. Anxiety and feelings of panic can cause test scores to plummet. No matter how much someone prepares for a test if all they can think about is how they have to perform well or else they won’t succeed at their goals, they aren’t going to do well.  So not only will we help students with actual test material, we will help to boost their confidence in the process. This way, these students have the highest chance of success.

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