What is the "New SAT" and how will it affect me and my child?

The New SAT and its partner tests, PSAT/NMSQT, have been designed to better reflect comprehensive and broad-based learning. They are less heavily concerned with skills ("trick" math problems, vocabulary knowledge) and more focused on the abilities of a student in a school context. For that reason, it is ever more important that holistic diagnosis is made of what a student knows so that gaps can be filled in preparation for the exam.  

At Nexus Academics, we like to say that the test is:

"Less crammable, more teachable!"

In other words, one can no longer simply familiarize oneself with the format and content, take some practice tests, and expect significant score improvement. However, this also means that the test is less reliant on "non-academic" skill sets. The most relevant skills on the new test are those that can be taught and retained, those that most closely reflect what students will need to find success in college.

Some additional differences from the old test:

  • The New SAT will be graded on a 1600 point scale, weighted evenly between a Math section and a newly combined Critical Reading and Writing section.

  • The essay will now be optional.

  • There will no longer be a penalty for guessing.

  • Reading passages will be culled in part from important historical documents (e.g., The Gettysburg Address, The Federalist Papers, The Magna Carta, Machiavelli's The Prince, etc.)

  • Computer-based testing will become available.

If you have further questions, please don't hesitate to ask!

Q: Do you provide practice tests?

A: Yes. Fully proctored practice tests can be arranged through a partnership with a service in Manhattan and Brooklyn. For information about these locations or to arrange testing in other locations, please email us.


Q: Are study materials provided?

A: Yes. Worksheets and other homework material is provided at no cost.


Q: Can't I improve my score on standardized tests just by learning some "tricks" to figuring out the right answer?

A: No, this is NOT true! Standardized tests may follow patterns, but the surest and most reliable way to improve one's score is to master the material tested.

Whether you are 12 years old taking your first ISEE or 25 years old and taking the LSAT in preparation for law school, a commitment to the content of the test is the best way to succeed.


Q: Do you provide services in cities other than New York?

A: Yes. Though we are based in New York, we can arrange sessions world-wide, both in person and via the internet. 


Q: What is the best schedule for Standardized Testing?

A: As with most educational planning, this varies by student. Factors that play a significant role include test choice, subject tests, AP schedules, summer plans, and selectivity of college choice.

That being said, it behooves everyone to start early. A comprehensive and well planned schedule for testing sets expectations, relieves pressure, and improves the chances for the outcome you and your family desire.

If you have questions about what might be the best schedule for you or your child, please email or call us any time!