Frequently Asked Questions
How does the point increase guarantee work?
Yes, we really do guarantee an increase of at least 160 points on your SAT score or 4 points on your ACT score by the time you finish our program. And unlike other companies, we guarantee an increase on your real SAT or ACT score, not just on practice tests.
If you don’t see that score increase, we’ll refund you the full cost of your Automated Online Prep program (a $397 value), plus we’ll provide you continuing tutoring for as many hours as you started with, completely free. We’ll also work with you, your tutor, and your online program to adjust your learning plan and ensure you reach your target score.
To qualify, you do need to finish your full program. Finishing your PrepScholar tutoring program simply means meeting with your tutor for all the tutoring hours your purchased, as well as reaching Mastery level in all the skills on the PrepScholar program. You can track your progress toward Mastery in every skill from the “Progress” tab in your Automated Prep program.
If you complete the program, and your score hasn’t increased by at least 160 SAT points or 4 ACT points, simply send us your official score from before you started with us and your official score from after completing the program. We’ll even accept PSAT and PreACT scores from before you started.
Of course, a 37 on the ACT or a 1650 on the SAT isn’t possible, even for us, so we do have a maximum: We guarantee up to a 34 on the ACT or a 1530 on the SAT. That means even if you already have a 32 or a 1500, we guarantee our program will get you at least into the 99th percentile, and many of our students’ scores go even higher!
You can read our full policy in our terms.
How does the one-hour guarantee work?
We know our tutors and our program are the best around, but we don’t ask you to take our word for it. You can sign up for tutoring and try it for an hour, and if you’re not completely satisfied, we’ll give you a full refund of your entire tutoring purchase, including that first hour! Just email [email protected] and let us know.
What if I don’t like my tutor?
All of our tutors are excellent at connecting with their students, and when you sign up with us, we’ll do our best to match you with the perfect tutor for you. We also really encourage you to email us at [email protected] to let us know if you have any special requests about the kind of tutor you’d like to work with.
But sometimes a tutor and a student just don’t quite “click,” and that can make it hard to stay motivated on your prep. We’re dedicated to making sure you love your tutoring, so just email us if you don’t feel your tutor is a great fit: we’ll connect you with a new tutor based on your feedback and make sure it’s an excellent match.
Of course, we also have our 1-hour guarantee, so if you decide after your first hour that PrepScholar or tutoring just isn’t right for you, you can get a full refund on your tutoring.
How will I schedule my tutoring sessions?
You’ll schedule sessions directly with your tutor, via email and during your tutoring sessions. If you ever need to reschedule, just email your tutor to set up a new time.
Because we work with a lot of students, we do ask that you email your tutor at least 24 hours ahead of time if you need to reschedule or cancel. You can still cancel or reschedule under 24 hours before a session, but we will have to charge you for the time reserved.
What will happen when I first sign up?
When you sign up for PrepScholar tutoring, you’ll also get full access to our Automated Online Prep program. You’ll create an account as part of the signup process, then you’ll receive an email with instructions on how to login. We ask you to do a little work in our prep program right away so that we can learn more about you to pair you with the perfect tutor.
When you login to your brand new PrepScholar account, you’ll complete a short survey and a 60-minute diagnostic to help us see exactly where you are in your prep. After that, you can keep right on practicing and learning with the program, or you can wait a couple of days: your tutor will email you within 7 days of when you sign up to get started with your tutoring!
Are there payment plan options available?
We don’t currently have payment plan options for the 4-hour and 12-hour tutoring packages, but we do offer a payment plan for the 50-hour package. The 50-hour payment plan breaks up the package into four monthly payments of $1749, so that you can still sign up for 50 hours of tutoring, without having to pay all at once.
Will my tutor be able to teach me all the sections and subjects on the test?
Yes! We make sure all of our tutors can teach all parts of the test: Reading, Writing/English, Math, the Essay, and ACT Science. We also make sure each of our tutors knows key strategies and is fully trained in both tests, including the latest changes.
That way, you don’t have to switch between tutors to learn everything you need on the test: your tutor will be able to teach you everything from parallel structure to quadratic equations, and will know the best strategies for all the challenges of test day.
Will I need to buy any extra books or outside materials?
Everything you need for your prep is included when you sign up for tutoring. You’ll have access to PrepScholar’s complete Automated Online Prep program, including thousands of practice questions and multiple practice tests. The program will adapt to you as you learn, so you’ll keep getting new challenges and lessons even outside of your meetings with your tutor.
If you’re an ACT student, we’ll also ship you a copy of ACT’s official test book with real practice tests, completely free. (SAT students, we didn’t forget about you: the official books and tests from College Board are free online, and we’ll direct you to them throughout your program.)
Can I work with one of your tutors, but not use the PrepScholar Complete Online Prep program?
Part of what makes our tutoring so effective is that our tutors can see your progress as you work on your Automated Prep program, and they plan each lesson around the work you’ve done since the last time you met. That means you and your tutor can hone directly in on the specific points where you can learn the most, and your tutoring sessions will always be focused and productive.
Because of this, we do ask that all of our students use PrepScholar’s Automated Prep program as part of their tutoring. All by itself, our Automated Prep is an incredibly effective way to learn the test, and our tutors use it to really individualize and boost your prep.
Can I use all my tutoring time for college counseling?
The majority of your tutoring time will be focused on test prep, but you do have the option of spending up to 1 hour from your initial tutoring package working with your tutor on college applications. That could include figuring out what schools to apply to, working on your application essay, building your activities resume, or anything else you’d like help with. Since our tutors all went to top schools, they have an insider perspective on what actually works when it comes to applying to a school and getting in.
Can I get my money back if I don’t use all my tutoring hours?
Of course. If you don’t end up using all of your tutoring hours, we can refund some of the remaining purchase. Just email [email protected] to let us know you’d like to refund the rest of your hours: we’ll count up the tutoring hours you’ve used at a rate of $199 per hour, and refund the remainder of your purchase. (Read more in our terms.)
If you’re not sure you’ll use all your hours, though, we recommend starting with a 4-hour package — at $149 per hour of tutoring, it’s a big discount on that $199/hour refund rate.
Can I get tutoring for both the SAT and the ACT at once?
We strongly recommend prepping for just one test at a time. While there are a lot of basic skills that appear on both tests, they have different formats, strategies, and question types. Learning to ace the test means getting to know it inside and out, and it’s hard to do that for both tests at once.
But if you have test dates coming up, and you really need help on both tests at the same time, we can help set that up. In fact, since all of our tutors get trained in both tests, we can set up a program with one tutor to guide you through both the SAT and the ACT. Just email [email protected] or call us at 1-866-811-5546 to ask about working on both tests.
How does the Automated Prep program work?
PrepScholar’s Automated Prep is all about individualization and motivation. As you work on it, it adapts to your progress and gives you new lessons and practice specifically targeted to your skill level across every facet of the test. That way, you learn all the fundamentals you need, but you also keep building up your high-level skills until you can take on the hardest questions in every part of the test.
When you first get started, you’ll fill out a survey to let us know where you are in your prep and what you want to work on, then you’ll complete a diagnostic that tests every single skill that appears on the SAT or ACT (whichever test you’re taking). That diagnostic will tell us where you’re starting from in your knowledge and strategy across all 49 SAT skills and 52 ACT skills in the PrepScholar program.
From there, you’ll start working on lesson and practice sets selected to meet your current levels of mastery and keep challenging you to score higher on the test. You’ll access your lessons through a dashboard that will adapt and reset each week to help you keep improving. Periodically, you’ll also complete full-length, official practice tests to see how your prep is impacting your real score and where you can continue to learn more.
As you work through the program, we’ll ask you to set goals, plan your prep, and reflect on your progress. We’ll send you reminders and progress emails to help you stay on track and motivated.
Can I pick my tutor?
If one of our tutors sounds like the perfect fit for you, just email [email protected] when you sign up to let us know your preference. We’ll do our best to connect you with that tutor.
Sometimes, though, a particular tutor might already have a full schedule. If the tutor you’d like to meet with isn’t free, we’ll help you connect with another top tutor who also fits your goals, interests, and learning style.
Can I talk to my tutor before I pay?
Out of respect for our tutors’ time, we do ask that you sign up before talking with your tutor. We’re happy to tell you more about your tutor’s background, though, to help in your decision making. And we always have our 1-hour guarantee: if you’re not satisfied after your first hour of tutoring, we’ll completely refund your entire tutoring purchase, including that hour!
If you have questions or concerns about your tutor, we always encourage you to email us at [email protected].
How do you tutor online?
We’ve built our tutoring program so that it feels just like meeting with a tutor in person, but without any of the hassle, expense, and uncertainty of having to find and connect with a local tutor. Your tutor will meet with you via Skype or Google Hangouts video software, so that you can each see each other, talk, and share information live.
Your tutor will also use an overhead camera, screenshare, and whiteboard technology to draw diagrams, show examples, and work out problems with you visually. All of our tutors are specially trained to make sure their teaching is effective online. In fact, our students often tell us they tend to forget that they’re meeting their tutors online — it feels so natural that it’s like being in the same room.
Can I add more hours after I finish my original package?
Certainly! It’s often beneficial to continue with your tutoring so that you have time to really dig into the toughest parts of the test. We offer four options for adding continuing hours:
- Pay-as-you-go, hourly for $199/hour
- 4 hours at a time for $596
- 12 hours at a time for $1596
- 20 hours at a time for $2596
- 54 hours at a time for $6596
The Pay-as-you-go and 4-hour options are best for flexibility, if you’re not sure how much more tutoring you’ll want or if you have just a few last topics to wrap up with your tutor. The 12-hour option gives you a lower hourly rate without having to commit to too many hours: it’s best if you have 1-2 months left before your test and want to ensure you continue to have tutoring up to your test day. And the 50-hour option is a great choice if you still have several months left and want to give yourself the best shot at a top score.
How will I contact my tutor?
For your tutoring sessions, you’ll meet with your tutor over video conferencing software such as Zoom or Google Meet. We’ll send you detailed instructions beforehand so you can set up your account and make sure you can connect.
In between tutoring sessions, you and your tutor will also stay in touch over email. Your tutor will send you updates, reminders, and summaries of each of your tutoring sessions. They’ll also be available by email to answer questions, share tips, and help you stay on track throughout your prep.
How long are tutoring sessions?
We generally recommend starting with a 1-hour session to set goals and begin building major strategies, then continuing with 2-hour sessions to dig deeper into content and specific skills on the test. But while we’ve found that schedule to be effective for most people, we know it’s not right for everyone! We’re flexible — just let us or your tutor know your scheduling preferences, and we’ll help plan a learning program to fit.
Are tutors available on the weekends/evenings?
Absolutely. In fact, we have tutors available to meet almost any time of the day or night. If you have a tight schedule, just email us at [email protected] when you sign up, and let us know; we’ll connect you with a tutor whose availability matches yours.
How far in advance do I have to schedule my sessions?
Try to set up each session at least 24 hours in advance so that your tutor has time to prepare a great lesson for you. Some of our tutors also have schedules that fill up very quickly, so we recommend letting them know as soon as possible when you’d like to meet.
Your tutor will also check in at the end of each of your sessions to confirm the next time you’re meeting.
Can I just buy an hour or two of tutoring? Is there a pay as you go option?
If you’re just starting tutoring with us, you’ll start with one of our 3 packages: 4 hours, 12 hours, or 50 hours. Having at least 4 hours to start is important, since your tutor will build and change your learning plan based on how many hours you have to work together.
After your initial package, though, you can choose to renew with any of those 3 packages, or you can switch to pay-as-you-go tutoring for $199 per hour.
1:1 Online Tutoring + Complete Online SAT Prep