Test Innovators Blog

When Is Boarding School the Right Choice?

  • Posted By: Geoff Dennis
  • October 25, 2018

What kind of family should consider boarding school? In this clip from our CEO's conversation with placement expert Neal Kamsler, Neal discusses how traditional wisdom about boarding schools may not hold water.

For 21 years, Neal Kamsler was Head of Upper School at Allen-Stevenson School in New York City. He now serves as Senior Director of Placement at Oliver Scholars, a non-profit educational access organization. Listen to the full school admissions conversation here.

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What are the sections of the SSAT? (Middle & Upper Levels)

  • Posted By: Jordyn Vandeleur
  • October 24, 2018
The Middle and Upper Level SSAT have six total sections. Two are unscored: the Writing Sample and the Experimental Section. The other four are scored: the two Quantitative (Math) Sections, the Reading Section, and the Verbal Section.
Writing Sample
While the Writing Sample isn’t scored, it will be sent to the schools you’re applying to. This section gives you a chance to express yourself and gives the school a chance to see your writing skills and style.
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An Admissions Chat with Placement Expert Neal Kamsler

  • Posted By: Geoff Dennis
  • October 22, 2018

Neal Kamsler has worked in New York City independent schools for 35 years, including 21 years as Head of Upper School at Allen-Stevenson School. He also serves as Senior Director of Placement at Oliver Scholars, an educational access organization based in Manhattan. Test Innovators' CEO, Edan Shahar, sits down with Neal to discuss independent school admissions: choosing the right school for your child, misconceptions about boarding school, and how admissions departments decide who to accept.

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5 Ways to Beat Test Prep Stress

  • Posted By: Erin Lynch
  • October 19, 2018

You have the big test coming up next month, and every time you sit down to study you get nervous. So nervous, in fact, that it’s hard to focus on the material. It’s just so overwhelming! While a little stress actually helps you perform better, too much anxiety surrounding test prep isn’t helpful for anyone.

Here are a few foolproof methods to help alleviate stress during the test prep process. Reduce anxiety and tackle this challenge head-on. You got this!

1. Have a plan for your practice.

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What's a good score on the ISEE?

  • Posted By: Joshua Dolim
  • October 16, 2018

So you’ve taken an initial ISEE practice test, and when you get your score back you’re not really sure what it means.


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How Bertschi School Uses Test Prep to Conquer Test Anxiety

  • Posted By: Geoff Dennis
  • October 15, 2018

Pam Lauritzen is the Director of Enrollment Management at Bertschi School in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. Two hundred and forty Pre-K through 5th-grade students attend this 42-year-old community-centered school where curriculum integrates core academics with art, technology, science, dance, music and drama. Students learn across disciplines through an education grounded in the unique talents within each child.

Bertschi and Test Prep

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How many times can I retake the ISEE?

  • Posted By: Joshua Dolim
  • October 12, 2018
Even when you plan ahead and have every detail for test day accounted for, things can go wrong. 
You went to bed early, but couldn’t sleep. 
You ate a good breakfast, but your stomach is upset.
You got sick and woke up with a stuffy nose.
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5 Educational Podcasts Your Kids Should Be Listening To

  • Posted By: Erin Lynch
  • October 10, 2018

Students learn best when they absorb information in multiple ways! Have your child take a break from screens and engage their senses by integrating podcasts into their daily routine. The following podcasts are fantastic opportunities to get your child thinking about ideas and topics that can increase their knowledge base and thinking skills!

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Free ISEE & SSAT Prep Classes for Seattle-Area Students

  • Posted By: geoff.r.dennis
  • October 2, 2018
Just as with any game or sport, knowing the rules of a standardized test is a cornerstone of success. Students who go into a test without any kind of preparation are at a significant disadvantage: they'll be figuring out those rules as the clock ticks. That's why Eastside Catholic School wants its applicants to gain experience with the test before they take the test. 
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5 Critical Tips for Managing Your Time on the ISEE & SSAT

  • Posted By: Erin Lynch
  • September 27, 2018

Even though the ISEE and SSAT are long tests, the time can fly by! Maybe you struggle with running out of time on the test, or maybe you feel the pressure of the clock and rush through. Either way, here a few simple tips to help yourself manage your time on the test.

1. Don’t spend the same amount of time on every question

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