Test Prep Courses – Higher Ground Learning
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What's in a course?


Diagnostic exams

We start each course with a full-length exam to gauge students’ starting scores, strengths, and weaknesses. We don’t just do this once, though; every student will take multiple diagnostics throughout the course (3, usually). By periodically tackling representative tests, students can put what they’ve learned into practice, solidifying content and strategies. In addition, each diagnostic exam comes with a detailed breakdown of student performance on specific question types and categories, giving both students and instructors valuable tools to drive improvement.


Class Instruction

Another way to say “standardized” is “predictable.” The SAT and ACT not only test the same topics every time, they test those topics in the exact. same. fashion. We’ve spend countless hours studying and teaching these tests, which means we know exactly what’s on the test, what it will look like, and how to succeed. From broad strategies to exploitable quirks, our instructors have the inside knowledge that turns these tests from mysterious monster to conquerable foe. 


1:1 Tutoring

We never lose sight of the individual student. One student’s “easy points” might be another student’s nightmare, so every student gets the opportunity to work one-on-one with their instructor. By supplementing group instruction with flexible 1:1 tutoring sessions, we ensure that every student finds the path to their best score. 

See a sample diagnostic report

Preview our unique curriculum

Frequently Asked Questions

Students in our international classes average about a 100 point increase on the SAT or 3 points on the ACT. Many improve significantly more. More often than not, it comes down to the level of dedication applied both in and out of class. We don’t view these courses as a program to “download” information into a student’s brain. Instead, real improvement comes with repeated implementation of both concepts and strategy, which means resilient self-awareness and active reshaping of habits; students need to not only re-learn subjects they struggle with, they need to modify how they approach the test. The best results come when a student engages with the instructor to identify productive strategies and to learn from mistakes, building familiarity and confidence with each diagnostic. 

Most classes are held after school for ≈2 hours, 3 or 4 days a week, for 3 weeks. However, every school has a unique schedule, so be sure to check out your school-specific calendar for details. Also note that there are 3 full length practice exams on the weekends and optional (but highly recommended!) 1-on-1 tutoring opportunities throughout the week.

The short answer is “probably not.” Since the first test that even theoretically affects university applications is the PSAT NMSQT in 11th grade, it generally makes a lot more sense to wait a year or two before diving into an intensive prep course. Furthermore, Grade 9 students are often missing foundational coursework (especially in math) that is a pre-requisite to understanding content on the SAT & ACT. There are exceptions, though, so don’t hesitate to contact us if you have further questions. 

You bet! The PSAT is essentially just a shorter version of the SAT, so we actually recommend that PSAT students simply join an SAT course – the content and strategy covered in an SAT course will apply equally to the shorter test. 

NO. You must register for official exams through the Collegeboard (SAT) or the ACT organization (ACT). Please refer to each organization’s respective website, and in particular navigate to the pages for international students.

Maybe! If we’ve been to your school before there’s a good chance that we’re coming back, though possibly not until the next Spring or Fall season (most of our courses occur annually). If we’ve never been to your school and you’d like to request a course, please contact us! It’s also worth noting that we offer 1-on-1 online test prep tutoring year round, which is another great way to get ready for these tests.

Let us know!

We know that everyone’s a bit scattered right now, which means that even schedules designed for a particular school don’t necessarily fit your circumstances – or time zone.

Not to worry!
We have several different options to prep the SAT this fall, including group courses in various time zones. We also offer 1-on-1 tutoring, which is almost infinitely flexible. If you’re having trouble lining up a schedule, please don’t hesitate to reach out; we’ll arrange a (free) consultation to help craft a personalized game plan – whatever your timeline.

If you have any questions about our courses or the SAT in general, please don’t hesitate to contact our International Coordinator at colton@highergroundlearning.com.

Planning on taking the ACT as well?

Students in Egypt face some (seriously unfair) obstacles around the SAT. Over the past couple years, students from Egypt have suffered from cancelled exam dates and even cancelled scores – which means many students are proactively planning to take both the SAT and ACT, just in case one exam falls through. 

If you’re hoping to prepare for both exams, consider adding the ‘Online Tutoring Package’ to your enrollment

The scheduled group classes will be geared towards the specific nuances of the SAT, but the majority of the content and strategies for the SAT apply to the ACT as well. As such, students transitioning from the SAT prep course towards ACT preparation are welcome to use the 5 hours of follow-up tutoring for ACT-specific prep. Our tutors are very experienced in both exams and can help students re-apply the concepts from the SAT class towards success on the ACT down the road. Plus, follow up tutoring provides the opportunity to cover ACT-only topics like the “Science” section.

If you have any questions about either exam or about the prep course in general, please contact Colton Wright, our International Coordinator, at colton@highergroundlearning.com.

We're prepared.

Like hundreds of schools and businesses around the world, we faced some pretty abrupt changes in Spring 2020. Luckily, we already had a strong background in teaching 1-on-1 test prep online – which meant we were well poised to adapt to all-online programs.

We always strive to provide the most effective prep possible, so moving a course online involves more than a Zoom meeting link. If a course does end up online, we take full advantage of the opportunities created. Free from geographic restrictions, online classes can utilize longer timelines, smaller class groups, and multiple instructors. Our classes this spring are spread over 6 weeks rather than 3 and sort students into classrooms of 5-7 students, providing a more relaxed pace and making sure students can still connect with their instructor – even if they never get to shake hands.  

  We believe strongly that it’s everyone’s responsibility to proactively manage the spread of COVID-19, so we’re prepared to move any course online if necessary. If that happens, we still maintain our flexible refund policy (10 days prior to the originally scheduled start date). 

If you have any questions about our courses or the SAT in general, please don’t hesitate to contact our International Coordinator at colton@highergroundlearning.com.