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We teach the material Students have the best chance of doing well on the SAT when they understand the topics being tested. Our tutors teach the specific areas covered, from pronoun case to solving quadratic equations, because success on the test arises from understanding the foundational knowledge on which the questions are based. We feel that the most ethical and effective approach to teaching the SAT addresses this fundamental truth. 

We impart the important strategies: Although our emphasis is on teaching the material, there are certainly important strategies to learn. From simply knowing when to guess to recognizing when and how you can pick numbers for a math question, key strategies can improve a student’s confidence and performance.  

Our books make the difference: Many students who prepare for the SAT feel their time is wasted by doing an endless number of practice sections. And it’s true that if they understand the majority of the questions in a given section, their opportunity to improve is quite limited. Students should spend the most time on the topics that give them the most trouble. However, there aren’t any materials that enable that kind of focus, whether published by the College Board or other companies. For that reason, David Bossart has been writing his own practice questions and explanations for students since founding Aristotle Associates. Through years of experience, he has identified the most commonly tested topics on the SAT and developed practice sections that address them individually. Throughout 2010 these materials were reworked in great detail, filling in gaps and clarifying potentially confusing ideas, until everything was compiled into two extremely useful books, titled Paramount SAT.
By addressing students’ weaknesses specifically, teaching the material they don’t understand, and providing practice with those topics, our tutors have helped students raise their scores with unprecedented efficiency. Students can practice one particular grammatical mistake, for instance, mastering it before moving on. In other programs students spend a large portion of their time on topics they already understand; in light of the myriad responsibilities and assignments that most high school students face, such an approach is highly inefficient and ineffective.

We realistically address the essay: Writing the essay is one of the most challenging parts of the SAT, and while we can’t teach students to become better writers overnight, we do give them the tools they need to raise their essay score by improving their approach and the mechanics of their writing. We clearly explain the criteria that the College Board uses to score the essays, and unlike other companies, we give detailed feedback and analysis on the essays students produce, with suggestions for further improvement. This commentary allows our tutors to address the specific issues that a student has, rather than simply assigning a numerical score and using general terminology to describe it, as other companies do (including the College Board when it sends SAT results to families).

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