Frequently Asked Questions
How can I roll my 401(k) into a Roth IRA?
Um, we’re an SAT and ACT prep company. We don’t really offer financial advice. However, before considering any financial instruments, carefully evaluate each investment’s merits and risks, including risk of loss. Past performance is not necessarily a predictor of future performance. In other words—don’t get too attached to your kidneys or first-born.
Oh my Gosh. I’m so embarrassed! I can’t believe I just asked you about financial advice.
That’s okay! We realize parents of juniors have a lot on their minds these days.
Tell me about it. When I applied to college, we didn’t have any prep classes or college advisers. I just rolled out of bed one morning and took the SAT. I hadn’t even heard of the ACT. Anyway… back to your Boot Camp. Do we need any special equipment or software to participate?
No, no special equipment whatsoever. To participate, students simply need a laptop, desktop, or tablet.
How does this program differ from your SAT Boot Camp?
Our ACT Boot Camp is exclusively focused on content and strategies for the ACT. Although there is a great deal of overlap between the ACT and its arch-nemesis, the SAT, our ACT Boot Camp is strictly focused on helping students outsmart the ACT exam.
What about other prep courses and classes—how do you guys differ from those?
We may lose our business license for admitting this, but we don’t believe we have a patent on SAT or ACT prep. We’re quite proud of our track record and approach, but as with all fields, there are several reputable programs and providers.
That said, there are a few compelling reasons that make our ACT Boot Camp uniquely poised to help students succeed.
First, we are the only prep company whose instructors take the actual ACT multiple times per year to deepen our expertise.
In addition, we hire actual ACT writers—the people who write the verbal and math questions that appear on every test—to develop curriculum for us and share little-known exam secrets, including the way the ACT’s notoriously-confusing Science passages are constructed.
And finally: we’re not boring! We realize that most students would rather undergo orthodontic surgery than take an ACT prep course, and so we strive to make our Boot Camp as engaging and entertaining as possible. Most students emerge from our course feeling pleasantly surprised. Check out our Nice Things Actual Teenagers Have Said About Us section to see how high school students feel about our program!
Can students ask questions and participate?
Absolutely! We strongly encourage participation and create a welcoming, supportive class environment from the outset. Students simply type their questions and send them to us via a chat box. All questions are private, so students can feel confident asking anything they would like without having to feel in any way self-conscious.
Do you teach content or strategies or both?
Both. For example, when we cover tricky ACT algebra problems, we make sure students understand the math concepts underlying those problems, and then we teach them shortcuts and strategies, including tips for avoiding sneaky trap answers.
Is the Boot Camp geared toward any particular type of student?
We have a wide range of students who participate in our ACT Boot Camp, from students looking for an on-ramp to the prep process to students looking for that final competitive edge right before the big test.
What about scores—what’s the average improvement for students who take your Boot Camp?
We calculate score improvement data based on students’ starting scores from official exams (shared with us) and students’ official ACT scores after they have completed our Boot Camp (also shared with us). We then segment that data according to starting score ranges, because a student starting at, say, a 34 on the ACT can’t improve more than 2 points.
Students whose starting scores range from 20 to 23, inclusive, improve an average of 4.5 points.
Students whose starting scores range from 24 to 27, inclusive, improve an average of 3.75 points.
Students whose starting scores range from 28 to 31, inclusive, improve an average of 2.5 points.
And students whose starting scores range from 32 to 34, inclusive, improve an average of 1.5 points.
Is your Boot Camp intended for sophomores, juniors, or seniors? Do any 9th graders take the course?
The majority of students who participate in our ACT Boot Camp intend to take the ACT or pre-ACT exam sometime within the next year, if not the next few months. Although the majority of our participants are in 10th, 11th, and 12th grade, we do have a substantial number of 9th graders who participate, primarily students looking for an on-ramp to the overall test prep process and highly-academic students who plan to take the ACT well before junior year.
What are your instructors’ qualifications?
We’re not a mill with hundreds of instructors of varying abilities and track records. We don’t charge a premium for gifted, experienced instructors because all of our instructors are subject matter experts with an abiding passion for teaching.
The vast majority of our instructors have graduated from the sort of colleges people proudly post on the rear window of their cars: Princeton, Yale, Dartmouth, Stanford, Columbia, MIT—and many more.
However—and this is a really important however—we don’t view sterling academic credentials as equivalent to teaching ability. We interview and decline to hire plenty of brilliant people who can’t seem to explain even the simplest of concepts.
Therefore, the number one trait we seek in instructors is the ability to teach: that unique combination of communication skills, emotional intelligence, and empathy that separates mere tutors from teachers who inspire students to fulfill their potential.
What aspects of the ACT are covered during the Boot Camp? Do you teach the optional essay?
We cover every single inch of the ACT, from strategies for the 15 types of questions on the ACT’s English Test to shortcuts for confusing, densely-worded ACT algebra problems. Our Boot Camp includes proven techniques for acing the ACT’s Writing Test.
What if my student can only attend one day or has to miss a portion of the Boot Camp?
We don’t prorate the tuition for our Boot Camps. However, even if your student only attends one of the two days, he or she will still benefit, in large part because students can always access the live recordings of the entire course after the Boot Camp has ended.
OK, well this all sounds good. I think I’m going to talk to my daughter and sign her up.
Great! We look forward to having her participate and to your feedback after the course.
Thank you. Also, I hate to ask, but… can you check out this thing I just noticed on my arm? I Googled “funny-looking spot on arm – sign of imminent death?” and now I’m a little worried.
Um, we’re an ACT prep company, not a team of dermatologists. But we recommend resisting dire self-diagnoses and typing symptoms into WebMD.