The Best Test Prep Book

Matt Larriva
Sep 03, 2015
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As we ramp up for the busiest test season of the year, let’s remember to prep intelligently by using quality prep books. The best test prep book for you is going to have a couple of key characteristics: a few strategies, tons of practice problems, and appropriate difficulty level.

Don’t rely too heavily on materials from The Collegeboard and The ACT:
Although these would seem to be the best sources of realistic tests, our data indicate that these are generally a bit easier than the actual test. Furthermore, The Collegeboard’s new guide is inherently flawed, as it will be using unconfirmed normalizing tables until it gathers enough real-world data to standardize the scores.

Play to your weaknesses: 
Prep more efficiently by practicing the areas in which you’re weakest. Use targeted materials like ACT Reading Practice or SAT Math Workbook to focus in on your weak spots. Don’t waste time reviewing subject matter you’re already strong in. This is a recurring theme among all those who are excellent in their fields: athletes, musicians, and test prep stars. Though it’s satisfying to do an hour’s worth of math problems and get them all correct, there’s less learned

Understand through over preparation: 
Your goal should be to have the actual test feel easy. You can accomplish this by choosing very challenging prep materials like Advanced Prep SAT Writing and Crush The Test, books which feature very challenging problems to help you achieve a perfect score.

Find a good book of tests:
One of the best ways to improve your score is by simply working through a book of tests, reviewing the answers, and self-analyzing. We’ve always had good results withPrinceton Review, and Kaplan’s book of tests.

Here’s to a great school year of high scores.