What Do Tutors Actually Do During SAT/ACT Tutoring?

During SAT/ACT tutoring, tutors play a crucial role in helping students prepare for these standardized tests. They provide personalized instruction and support to help students improve their test-taking skills, increase their subject knowledge, and achieve higher scores. Here are some key tasks and activities that tutors typically engage in during SAT/ACT tutoring:

1. Diagnostic Assessment:

Tutors begin by conducting a diagnostic assessment to evaluate the student's strengths and weaknesses. This helps them understand the areas where the student needs the most improvement and tailor their tutoring approach accordingly.

2. Individualized Study Plan:

Based on the diagnostic assessment, tutors create a customized study plan for each student. This plan outlines the specific topics and skills to focus on, sets goals, and establishes a timeline for progress.

3. Content Review:

Tutors provide comprehensive content review, covering all the relevant concepts and subject areas tested on the SAT/ACT. They explain difficult concepts, clarify doubts, and provide practice problems to reinforce understanding.

4. Test-Taking Strategies:

Tutors teach effective test-taking strategies and techniques specific to the SAT/ACT. They cover time management skills, question analysis, elimination strategies, and approaches for different question types. They help students develop a systematic approach to tackling the test, improving efficiency and accuracy.

5. Practice Tests and Analysis:

Tutors administer practice tests to simulate the actual test-taking experience. They analyze the results to identify patterns, track progress, and identify areas that need further improvement. They provide detailed feedback and review incorrect answers to help students learn from their mistakes.

6. Problem-Solving and Practice Sessions:

Tutors engage students in problem-solving sessions, focusing on challenging questions and concepts. They provide additional practice materials, including sample questions and practice tests, to reinforce learning and build confidence.

7. Individualized Instruction:

Tutors work closely with each student, providing individualized instruction and guidance. They adapt their teaching style to match the student's learning preferences and pace, addressing their specific needs and areas of improvement.

8. Motivation and Support:

Tutors play a crucial role in motivating and supporting students throughout the tutoring process. They provide encouragement, track progress, and celebrate achievements, boosting the student's confidence and commitment to their SAT/ACT preparation.

9. Tracking Progress:

Tutors continuously track the student's progress, keeping records of scores, performance, and areas of improvement. They regularly assess the effectiveness of the tutoring sessions and make necessary adjustments to the study plan as needed.

10. Communication with Parents and Teachers:

Tutors often communicate with parents and teachers to gather additional insights, align goals, and coordinate efforts. They provide feedback on the student's progress and share recommendations for continued improvement.

Effective Tutors Will…Set Tangible Goals For You

Effective tutors understand the importance of setting tangible goals for their students. When tutors set clear and measurable goals, it provides students with a sense of direction, purpose, and motivation. Here are some key ways in which effective tutors set tangible goals for their students:

1. Assessing the Student's Starting Point:

Before setting goals, tutors assess the student's current knowledge, skills, and areas of improvement. They may conduct diagnostic assessments, review previous test scores, or have initial discussions to understand the student's strengths and weaknesses.

2. Collaborating with the Student:

Effective tutors involve the student in the goal-setting process. They discuss the student's aspirations, academic targets, and timeline for achievement. By involving the student, tutors ensure that the goals align with the student's aspirations and create a sense of ownership.

3. Defining Specific and Measurable Objectives:

Tutors establish specific and measurable goals that are aligned with the student's needs and desired outcomes. For example, the goal might be to improve the SAT math section score by 100 points or to consistently score above a certain threshold in ACT English.

4. Breaking Down Goals into Milestones:

Tutors break down larger goals into smaller, achievable milestones. This helps students see their progress more clearly and provides a sense of accomplishment along the way. Milestones could be completing a certain number of practice tests, mastering specific concepts, or improving scores in specific sections.

5. Creating a Timeline:

Tutors work with students to create a timeline that outlines the steps needed to achieve the goals. They establish deadlines for completing practice tests, covering specific content areas, or mastering certain skills. The timeline keeps students on track and provides a sense of structure.

6. Monitoring and Adjusting Goals:

Effective tutors continuously monitor the student's progress towards the established goals. They track performance, assess strengths and weaknesses, and adjust goals as needed. If the student is making significant progress or encountering challenges, the tutor can modify the goals to ensure they remain relevant and achievable.

7. Providing Regular Feedback:

Tutors offer regular feedback on the student's performance, highlighting areas of improvement and celebrating successes. They provide specific feedback on practice tests, assignments, or completed tasks related to the goals. This feedback helps students understand their progress and areas that need further attention.

8. Offering Strategies and Resources:

Tutors provide students with strategies, techniques, and resources that support goal attainment. They offer study materials, practice tests, and test-taking strategies that align with the student's goals. Tutors also teach students how to utilize these resources effectively.

9. Motivating and Encouraging:

Effective tutors play a crucial role in motivating and encouraging their students. They inspire students to stay focused, work hard, and persevere through challenges. Tutors provide positive reinforcement, acknowledge effort, and celebrate milestones achieved along the way.

10. Tracking and Celebrating Progress:

Tutors keep track of the student's progress, whether it's through score improvements, mastery of concepts, or meeting milestones. They regularly review progress with the student, highlighting achievements and offering encouragement. Celebrating progress reinforces the student's motivation and builds confidence.

In summary, effective tutors set tangible goals for their students by assessing their starting point, defining specific objectives, breaking down goals into milestones, creating a timeline, and providing ongoing feedback and support. By setting clear goals, tutors provide students with a roadmap to success, keeping them motivated and focused on their academic objectives.

Effective Tutors Will…Help You Structure Your Studying

Effective tutors play a crucial role in helping students structure their studying for standardized tests like the SAT or ACT. By providing guidance and support in organizing study materials, creating study schedules, and implementing effective study strategies, tutors help students optimize their preparation and make the most of their study time. Here are some ways in which effective tutors help students structure their studying:

1. Assessing Individual Needs:

Tutors first assess the student's strengths, weaknesses, and learning style. They identify areas that require improvement and determine the most effective study strategies for the student. This assessment helps tutors tailor their approach to meet the student's specific needs.

2. Creating a Study Plan:

Tutors work with students to develop a personalized study plan. They consider factors such as the test date, the student's available study time, and the areas that need the most attention. The study plan outlines the topics to be covered, practice tests to be taken, and milestones to achieve during the preparation period.

3. Breaking Down Content:

Tutors break down the test content into manageable sections and topics. They help students understand the structure of the exam and the weightage given to different sections. By dividing the content into smaller parts, tutors make it easier for students to approach their studying systematically.

4. Providing Study Materials:

Effective tutors provide students with appropriate study materials, such as prep books, practice tests, and online resources. They recommend reliable sources that align with the test format and content. Tutors may also create customized study materials based on the student's needs.

5. Teaching Effective Study Strategies:

Tutors teach students proven study strategies and techniques that can enhance their learning and retention. This includes methods for active reading, note-taking, memorization, and problem-solving. Tutors demonstrate how to approach different question types and provide tips for time management during the test.

6. Scheduling Study Sessions:

Tutors help students establish a consistent study schedule that suits their individual needs and commitments. They assist in allocating time for each study session and determine the frequency and duration of study sessions based on the student's availability and preferences. Tutors emphasize the importance of regular and dedicated study time.

7. Setting Study Goals:

Tutors help students set realistic and achievable study goals. They break down the overall preparation process into smaller milestones and encourage students to focus on one goal at a time. By setting specific goals, tutors help students stay motivated and track their progress effectively.

8. Monitoring Progress:

Tutors monitor the student's progress throughout the preparation period. They track completed study tasks, review practice test results, and assess improvements in performance. Tutors use this information to make adjustments to the study plan and provide targeted guidance in areas that need further attention.

9. Offering Accountability and Support:

Effective tutors hold students accountable for their studying commitments. They provide regular check-ins, offer encouragement, and ensure that students stay on track with their study plan. Tutors are available to answer questions, clarify doubts, and provide additional support whenever needed.

10. Adapting and Modifying Strategies:

Tutors continuously assess the effectiveness of the study strategies implemented and make adjustments as necessary. They identify areas where students may be struggling and modify the approach accordingly. Tutors remain flexible and adaptable to ensure that the student's studying is productive and aligned with their goals.

In summary, effective tutors help students structure their studying by creating personalized study plans, breaking down content, providing study materials, teaching effective strategies, scheduling study sessions, setting goals, monitoring progress, offering accountability and support, and adapting strategies as needed. By providing structure and guidance, tutors empower students to make the most of their study time and optimize their preparation for standardized tests.


In conclusion, SAT/ACT tutors play a vital role in helping students prepare for these standardized tests. They go beyond simply teaching content and provide a range of valuable services. Tutors assess students' needs, set tangible goals, help structure their studying, teach effective strategies, monitor progress, offer support, and adapt their approach as necessary. By providing personalized guidance and support, tutors empower students to navigate the complexities of the exams and achieve their best possible scores. With their expertise and individualized attention, tutors contribute significantly to students' success in SAT/ACT preparation.