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January 2017
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Syndication has released it's new College ROI report that also forecasts the 20 year ROI for various colleges. The 20 year ROI is calculated by taking the difference between 20 year median pay for a bachelor's graduate from a particular school on the list and the 24 year median for a High School Graduate less the total cost to attend the college. 

Direct download: EP_73.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am MST

Ethan Sawyer, the College Essay Guy, returns to talk about his upcoming Webinar Series to aid in writing a personal statement essay:

Using the Secrets of Screenwriting to Write Your College Essay

A Five-Part Webinar Series led by Ethan Sawyer, the College Essay Guy

July 13-17, 11:30am-1:00pm PST and click on the blue banner on the top of the page to sign up for the webinar. 


Direct download: EP_72.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am MST

Becky Muldrow of Dual Credit At Home ( provides a unique method for students to start college differently, which is more affordable and at their own pace. Becky provides a guideline to help students earn college credits from home by earning those credits by exam. The exams are an accredited college level test to prove a student's knowledge of a subject. 

Direct download: EP_71.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am MST

Lauren Gaggioli of Higher Scores Test Prep returns to talk more about the revamped SAT and PSAT. With the release of more official materials, Lauren is now providing a blueprint for students to follow to prepare for the new PSAT in October 2015. 

Lauren also clears up some confusion regarding the score verification. When a student scores high enough to become a National Merit Semi-Finalist they must verify that score with a subsequent SAT. The National Merit Scholarship Corporation has confirmed that a Qualifying Student can verify their score with EITHER the current SAT or the revamped SAT that will be first seen in January of 2016. 



Direct download: EP2070.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:02pm MST

Huzefa Kapadia has created a course called Power 800 Math that works well to help students prepare for the Math section of the SAT test. 

Where to Find Huzefa:

  1. Search for Power 800 SAT Math 
  2. Course is $149
  3. Special Code= HUZEFAISALEGEND
  4. When using the special code the price is lowered to $31
Direct download: EP_69.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:12pm MST

Robert Schombs is the founder of Reason Prep and has taken the time to take and review the NEW PSAT Practice Test made available on the College Board Website the first part of March.

Robert took the test under the same time testing conditions: 60 minutes for the reading section and 35 minutes for math and writing / language sections.

YouTube Review by Robert:

Interesting Findings:

  1. The new PSAT is structurally the same as the ACT.Whereas in the new PSAT and in theory in the new SAT, is going to be all condensed into one block section, which is exactly like the ACT.
    • The redesigned PSAT moves closer to the ACT in the sense that on the old PSAT and on the old SAT both split the sections. The student would do a reading section for 25 minutes and then a math section for 25 minutes and then a grammar section for 25 minutes and then you go back to reading, so the subjects were all split.
  2. The time pressure on the ACT Reading (less than 1 minute per question) is more than the PSAT Reading (70 seconds per question).
  3. The PSAT Reading is the most similar to the old PSAT reading and so this section is the most different from the ACT.
  4. The PSAT Writing section is very similar to the ACT English section.
  5. The PSAT Math is similar to the Math Section of the ACT, but is more trying align with the Common Core Standards.
Direct download: EP_68.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:24am MST

Lauren Gaggioli of Higher Scores Test Prep returns to talk about the changes that are coming to the ACT.  On the ACT Website is says, "Innovation and continuous improvement without the need for radical change." The improvements have been noticed and it's time to better understand to help the preparation process. 

What are some of the new things to expect?

  1. Dual Passages in the Reading Section.
    • 40 Questions in 35 minutes where the dual passages add to the time pressure. 
  2. Math is getting more challenging too. 
    • 60 Questions in 60 minutes and it's still a progression of difficulty, yet seems to have more difficult questions thrown in there. 
    • Starting to mix Trigonometry in at the lower levels. 
    • Students need a handle on a wide range of Math Concepts. 
  3. The ACT varies from test date to test date in difficulty.
    • Because of the way the tests are scored and curved a prepared student should hope to take the most difficult test available on test date (not the easiest). 
    • That student would do better than their peers who didn't prepare. 
  4. New Writing Test in the form of "Optional Essay"
    • It really isn't optional because there is no way of 100% guaranteeing that the school your student is interested in won't require the Writing Section. 
    • Argument and Reasoning based Prompt for the Essay.
  5. Scale will remain 1-36, but there will be subscores that colleges can monitor. 

The changes will first be seen for the class of 2017, but remember all the students are in the same boat and the curves will be helpful accordingly. 

If your student is in the need of ACT or SAT Test Prep, Higher Scores Test Prep offers a 10% discount to the How to Pay for College HQ Community. Enter COLLEGE10 at checkout to receive the discount. 

Direct download: EP_67.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:31pm MST

Judy Zodda of Zodda College Services lends her expertise to the subject of College Athletic Recruitment. 


Judy highlights the importance for excelling Student Athletes to start preparing as early as their Freshman year of High School to be a good college recruit. 

(1) Planning a rigorous High School Curriculum with Honors, AP, International Baccalaureate Courses or College Prep Classes. 

(2) Ensure that as a Student you will complete the 16 Credits that are required by NCAA.

(3) Achieve the Highest Grades possible within that rigorous curriculum & the highest Standardized Test Scores Possible. 

(4) Be a Proactive advocate for yourself early on by reaching out to Division III schools and coaches.    

(5) Being an accomplished athlete. 

Direct download: EP_65.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:04pm MST

Stacey Howe-Lott of Stellar Scores stops in to gracioiusly gives more clarification around the PSAT for the Class of 2017. It will be the new version in October 2015 and she outlines a game plan for those who might have a chance at National Merit Status and those who would not. Thanks Stacey! 

Direct download: EP_64.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am MST

Alexis Avila from Prepped and Polished stops in to talk about Test Prep for Students with Learning Disabilities.  He gives some tips to help better prepare those students for success on taking the SAT or ACT.

Direct download: EP_63.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:55am MST