Max’s 7 Point Increase

One of my favorite things about McGovern Test Prep is that I get to work with the kids of old friends I went to high school with, like David. We just got his son Max a 7 point increase on the ACT, including at perfect 36 in the Reading section. So happy for him!

SAT Writing and Language Transitions

Often, the hardest problems in the Writing and Language section of the SAT are “TRANSITIONS” (words like “however” and “therefore” that are usually at the beginning of a sentence and help “transition” from one sentence to the next). This one is doubly tough because there are two questions involved. See if you can find the best word or phrase to go in each underlined portion.

‘I got a 32!!! Holy Sh&$!!!’

ACT scores come out today. First update of the day from one of my students: “I got a 32!!!!!! Holy sh&$!!!!!!” Her first practice test was a 26. That’s like going from a 1240 to a 1430 on the SAT! So… why haven’t you hired me to work with your student yet?

Last Chance to Leap

Just a few test dates left for the 2018/2019 school year:

SAT: May 4, June 1
ACT: June 8, July 13 (not offered in CA or NY)

I had about a dozen students take the April 13th ACT, so I have some openings. Sign your student up today for the best test prep this side of the Mariana Trench!

No Joking Around

SAT scores from the March 9, 2019 test came out today. Time to celebrate some more incredible SAT gains by my students! One student improved 220 points, from 1150 to 1370, and another student improved 150 points, from a 1340 to a 1490. My students are incredible.

Thoughts on the College Cheating Scam


One of the things I love about helping kids with the SAT and the ACT is what my students learn in the process — both in terms of material and in terms of life lessons. It’s important that kids go to college with the ability to use the basic rules of English grammar, to critically interpret reading passages, to use the critical thinking skills required in Algebra and Geometry, and to read and interpret charts and graphs and use Scientific deduction and reasoning. When students don’t learn that material or acquire those skills in the classroom, people like me who do test prep are here to fill in the gaps and to teach the missing material and skills. It’s also important that students know the value of hard work and what it takes to confront your missing knowledge or skills. Those two things are what I teach my students: the material they’re missing and the life lessons that go along with working hard to achieve a goal.

The real shame of the “College Cheating Scam” is the missed opportunity. These kids didn’t get to feel how my students feel — proud, accomplished, happy, confident. They cheated. They know it, their parents know it, and now the world knows it. I understand why they did what they did: they were afraid. It’s not the end of the world, and we should be careful with our outrage. However, we should also be clear. They were faced with a challenge — the same challenge my students face when I start working with them. They were missing the material and skills requisite for the SAT or ACT score they were looking for. Where I help my students see that challenge as an opportunity, they saw it as a threat. They gave in to their fear. The fear of not being good enough. The fear of not living up to other people’s expectations. The fear of what others might say if they ended up anywhere other than attending an elite university. They chose the easy way out and missed out on a tremendous opportunity for learning and growth.

Now, I always try to see everything as an opportunity. So what’s the opportunity in this? Well, it’s an opportunity for us all to re-commit to authentic learning and growth for our young people and for ourselves. It’s an opportunity for us all to look at where we might be cutting corners or taking the easy way out and to embrace our challenges instead of running from them. It’s an opportunity to look at where we’re letting fear guide our decisions rather than honesty, integrity, and commitment. There’s power in trying your best, giving your all and then embracing the outcome, regardless of whether you win or lose.

One last thing. I’ve been working with students in the communities where these students are from since I left teaching and started tutoring in 2006. No parent or student has ever asked me to cheat, bend the rules, or do anything that didn’t align with my values as an educator. So just keep that in mind. The families involved in this scandal are, in my experience, the exception, not the rule.

To embracing our challenges!

https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/12/us/college-admission-cheating-scheme/index.html

Online Prep: Effective, Affordable, Convenient

Just added a student in Idaho and gave away another scholarship to a deserving student here in LA. The more students you send my way, the more scholarships I can give. A very heartfelt thank you to all who have already referred students. Keep me in mind when you hear of people looking for SAT and ACT test prep. My online course is effective, affordable, and convenient!

Rocking Our Way to Higher Scores

ACT scores from the Feb 9, 2019 test date came out today, and once again, my students ROCKED IT. One student went from a 23 to a 30 (that’s like a 230 point increase on the SAT), another went from a 33 to a 35 (a perfect ACT score is 36) – I’m so happy for, and proud of, my students!!!

Feeling Like The King

One of my students was grinning ear to ear when he saw his scores yesterday – raised his ACT from a 26 to a 32 (that’s like going from an SAT 1240 to a 1430). Then I gave another student who couldn’t afford my online program a scholarship. Not gonna lie – feeling a little like The King today.

Ready…Set…Test Prep!

Did you know that I’m helping students online from all over the country (Puerto Rico, North Carolina, Washington DC, Colorado) raise their SAT/ACT scores? I have room for more students! Send them to mcgoverntestprep.com or have them email me at joe@mcgoverntestprep.com.

Put your game face on and let’s do some SAT/ACT prep!

Upcoming 2019 SAT dates: 3/9, 5/4, 6/1
Upcoming 2019 ACT dates: 2/9, 4/13, 6/8