April 21, 2022
How does the computer-adaptive GRE work?
The GRE is a computer-adaptive test, or CAT for short. Every test taker will see a least two Math sections and two Verbal sections. The difficulty level of the second section (easy, medium or hard) in each subject is determined by your performance on the first section. If you get lots of questions right on the first section, you will get a harder second section, but access to higher scores. If you don’t get as many questions right on the first section, you will get an easier second section and your scoring potential is capped at a lower range.
The computer-delivered GRE is the standard format for test takers. The paper-based GRE is far more rare and only offered up to three times a year. But if you want to learn more about the paper-and-pencil test, visit ETS.org .
When are AP tests?
APs are given during a two-week period in May.
When should I start preparing for the ACT?
Ideally, you should start preparation in the spring semester of 10th grade. You should at least take a first pass at the test at that point, to understand where your knowledge gaps are and explore how you can improve over the coming year. Many students wait to start prep until halfway through 11th grade, but that can be a bit stressful to balance with school work and leaves them in trouble if unanticipated scenarios arise (we're look at you, 2020). Take it from us: the earlier you look at this, the better.
We sometimes work with students who come to the process very late. For example, students who decide to apply to US colleges at the start of their senior year. While this is very far from ideal, it is not impossible to tackle. We are always open to discussing with you about your circumstances, to advise on what would be best for you.
How long is the SAT?
3 hours. If you choose to complete the Essay, the test will be 3 hours and 50 minutes.
Can you help with homework?
Absolutely! We can definitely help students tackle tricky homework assignments. But we will always focus on learning above rote completion; our goal is to help students build independence over time by developing their academic, time management, and study skills—as well as their confidence.
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Applying to Boarding and Independent High Schools After Covid
The pandemic has changed everything in terms of understanding and navigating the boarding and independent secondary school admissions process. Applications climbed to historic highs and the rules as we knew them were altered forever. In this webinar, ESM's resident admissions expert Lisa Schultz and SSAT/ISEE specialist Stuart Easton will share innovative strategies and best practices to support successful admissions to the top private schools in a post-pandemic world.
Preparing to Write Your Personal Statement
The personal statement-writing process can be daunting. Where to begin? In this webinar, ESM College Counselor Carrie Jorgenson and Senior Academic Mentor Chris Johnson will discuss just how to start! Topics will include how to brainstorm, choose, and hone a personal statement topic, what should go into the first draft, and tips for staying on track.
I got into college! Now what?
You've put in all the hard work required to get those college acceptances, and there's still more to do?! ESM Prep College Counselors Brad Harris and Eric Harter are here to help get you across the finish line. They'll discuss the ins and outs of everything you need to do before the May 1 deadline, including advice on how to choose between several great schools, when you need to put down a deposit, and how to handle waitlists.
The British Student's Ultimate Guide to US Universities
It's been said that the US and UK are "two countries separated by a common language" and nowhere is this more true than in higher education! In this webinar, ESM Prep counselor Rachel Edgell will explain the US university application process from a UK perspective. What exactly are the differences between US and UK universities? When should students start planning their US applications? How does the Common App differ from UCAS? Rachel will share her experience with students applying to US universities from the UK, and she'll shed light on some best practices for interested families and students.
College Admissions Update with ESM Founder Billy Downing
In this webinar hosted by ESM Founder Billy Downing, he’ll share insights from this year’s application cycle to help families better understand the current admissions landscape. He’ll also offer advice for high school Juniors beginning the admissions process.
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