Starting College in the Summer versus Fall?

High school graduation is looming, you’ve been accepted to your university of choice, and now you have a big decision to make: when should you start? There are pros and cons to both waiting for fall and for getting an early jump on your education this summer.

During summer semester, classes tend to feel more relaxed and the campus is much less crowded. This gives you ample opportunity to get used to your new home away from home without all the crowds of fall semester. However, don’t forget that summer semesters are shorter than fall and spring semesters; this means the same amount of coursework is crammed into a shorter window of time, potentially leaving you busier than you would otherwise expect. Do you have scholarships lined up for college? If so, you’ll want to check with them to see if summer classes are covered or not as many scholarships will only fund fall and spring semesters.

On the other hand, you’re nearing the end of your K-12 education: a journey lasting more than a decade! Don’t you deserve a summer off? While many would argue that taking a whole summer off is lazy and an inefficient use of your time, there is something to be said for taking a breather and decompressing before jumping into the next phase of your life. You can use that time wisely to prepare for college placement tests, catch up with friends and family, and to save money from a job so you’re able to spend time with the new friends you’ll make over the next few years.

There is no right or wrong answer to when you should begin college; it’s a personal decision that must be made based on your own personality and other factors that are specific to your life. Think about what makes the most sense for YOU and do what you need to do in order to be best prepared to make the most out of college.


SAT Prep Courses Help Boost Test Scores

The college admissions process can be highly competitive and brutal. Every Spring, colleges across the country get a flood of applications for a few freshman class spots. Many well-deserving students get rejected and miss out on the chance to attend the school of their choice. When it comes to college admissions, give your high-schooler every advantage possible. Choosing the right SAT prep for your child is the first step in helping them get into the college of their choice.

Why does my child need SAT prep? You’re not the first parent to wonder this. Even if your student is a high-achiever, taking the SAT can be daunting if he/she is not prepared. SAT testing procedures have changed in recent years, casting off the paper and pencil test in favor of electronic testing methods. In addition, many students’ use of technology have given them a false sense of security about the testing process, and these topics are explored in SAT test prep.

In keeping with the trend of technology, online test prep is a viable resource to become well-versed in the subject materials and familiar with the testing process. Many students get tripped up when they are not aware of the testing instruction requirements, causing them to have scores below their actual capabilities. B Line’s SAT prep will consist of dry test runs and answer questions common to students taking the SAT test.

In addition, SAT prep will help students review any subjects that he/she may be struggling with. Your child will be able to review any confusing subjects with animated review sections and feedback after every question answered. They will also be given practice tests that allow them to focus on their weak subjects before test day. In addition, your child will not be forced to review topics that he has already mastered. With specialized SAT test prep instruction, your student will be able to focus solely on the topics that matter most.

Don’t leave your student’s SAT score and college admissions opportunities to chance.


Tips for Retaking the SAT

Colleges and Universities schools rarely consider students with scores below their standards, so getting as close to their school’s average or above puts an applicant as an advantage. Unfortunately, not everyone receives their ideal score after taking the SAT just once.

Maybe the first time you took the SAT you didn’t prepare. You told yourself you were going to and maybe even bought a book to help you review but just never put in the time. Maybe you were the exact opposite and enrolled in a prep course, spent every weekend studying and carried vocabulary flashcards around with you and all of that work still didn’t amount to the score you wanted. Both are common scenarios and there is an answer for you if you fit into one of these two categories.

The SAT is not like the usual test you will face in high school, so it makes sense to utilize a strong SAT prep course that fits into your schedule. The idea is to get comfortable with the format and learn strategies to maximize results. Timing is very important throughout the SAT. Each of the three main sections has three subsections, each with its own time limit. In general, the easy questions are at the beginning and harder questions come at the end, but this is not always the case. One strategy you can explore and practice online is to blitz through an entire multiple-choice section, answering the questions that you’re at least somewhat sure of but marking some for review later. Just skip questions that are confusing or too difficult, but leave a few minutes at the very end to go back and guess at the answers. A blank counts as a wrong answer, so don’t leave any question blank.

By not even knowing what to expect on the test, you’re setting yourself up for failure. You won’t be nearly as confident and probably won’t get through as many questions as you would have hoped. On the other hand, by studying too much, you’re essentially drowning your brain with an overload of information so when it comes time for common sense questions, you’ll end up overanalyzing and probably miss questions that you shouldn’t.

By enrolling in a free online SAT prep course, you can move at your own pace and take breaks as often as possible. Unlike a classroom, you won’t get left behind on questions you don’t understand or stay stuck on skills already mastered. You can track your own progress and create a study plan that works for you. The course includes as many as eight timed practice tests. Taking these will help you get comfortable with the SAT format, which can do a lot to help you reach your best score. After taking the test twice, you’ll know for sure where your strengths and weaknesses are; which sections you score highly on, and which give you trouble.


What Does Your E-mail Address Say About You?

Given how tough the economy is these days, even minor typos in resumes, cover letters and job applications have been known to sink candidates’ chances for new employment. However, did you know that your e-mail address might also be giving off a very negative impression?

When the Internet was more commonly accessed through Internet service providers such as America Online and CompuServe, it was the usual practice for people to pick user names that did not contain their actual name, in order to preserve their anonymity. Many people also chose user names that reflected their personality, such as “SexyGirl69″ and “BadBoyXXX.”

However, as Internet use has become more prevalent in the business world over the last 10-15 years, the trend has been toward user names and personal e-mail addresses in professional correspondence that reflect the name of the person behind the messages, rather than a clever anonymous pseudonym. The reason for this is the same reason that formality is generally demanded in business communications in the first place, which is that one simply cannot assume that one will get along on a personal basis with a client or customer with whom one is doing business. Business relationships demand a certain level of formality so that people with widely differing viewpoints and ideas about the world can successfully interact with each other, and user names like “SexyGirl69″ and “BadBoyXXX” presume a certain level of friendliness and familiarity with people that is wholly inappropriate in the business world.

Aside from whatever direct impact this kind of user name may have on a person reviewing your resume, it also tells a potential employer that you do not know how to communicate with customers or potential future coworkers on a professional basis. Although this is clearly not the intention of the people who use these user names, their use can communicate a kind of immaturity that can be fatal to job applications in this tough environment. Instead, most personal e-mail addresses these days used in professional correspondence are composed of some combination of a person’s first name, last name, or initials and maybe with some numbers, dashes or underscores thrown in for people with common names. With a professional sounding e-mail address, you can be certain you are putting your best foot forward in job applications and other business settings.


How Much Time Should I Spend Studying For The SAT?

Taking the SAT is an important step when planning to attend college. Every student has a different learning style, so the time spent studying and preparing for the SAT varies greatly. It is recommended to take the PSAT first to measure the base score and then sign up for a free online SAT prep course to increase these results.

After analyzing the scores received for the PSAT, students are encouraged to take between six to twelve weeks to prepare for the final test, even if they were satisfied with their preliminary marks. It’s important to be have a strong understanding of the test layout as well as the types of questions that will be asked.

Scores can always be improved, so students are encouraged to take a few hours each week to study for the actual SAT in order to achieve higher results when it really counts. Resources like free SAT prep courses are available in order to receive practice questions and study suggestions for the test. Users of these tools can select questions from reading, mathematics and writing sections depending on areas they need the most improvement. With the lessons offered throughout these courses, students can learn at their own pace while getting useful feedback on subject areas where they need the most improvement. Also, practice tests can be taken several times and it is recommended to do so over the weekend, in order to get adjusted to waking up early in preparation of the real test. By studying with practice questions, students can gauge their improvement over the course of a few weeks.

SAT prep can make a difference when applying for scholarships and getting into first-choice colleges and universities. By enrolling in online SAT prep courses and utilizing the tools of free SAT prep, students can significantly improve their scores and by following these steps, they will learn study skills that prove useful in furthering their education.


Why do I need to study for the SAT?

Imagine standing up in front of thousands of your peers at your college graduation, having been chosen as a speaker because you were president of the Student Engineering Club and the Association of Medical Student-Doctor Alliance, not to mention founder of the Beginner’s Salsa Club and a beloved personality on the campus talk radio show. Basking in self confidence you have been slowly acquiring for the past years since you were accepted to your number one choice school, you give your mother a wink and chuckle to yourself when you notice her crying and smiling with tears of pride. Suddenly a word comes to mind. “Approbation”. This word means, “praise” such as “The crowd welcomes the heroes with approbation.” You realize you remember when you first learned this word. It was on a SAT test prep years ago. You remember those long hours spent huddled over your grueling flashcards that still had damp spots from when you fell asleep at three in the morning on a school night and all of the high school football games you missed out on and think to yourself, “It was so worth it.”

You may think you are naturally gifted and privileged just because you took the first step and signed up to take the SAT, but to achieve true success and this above scenario takes hard work and dedication, even for the naturally gifted. The SAT is designed to test skills learned throughout your high school career so it should seem like common sense but how often are you really brushing up on the algebra 1 class you took in ninth grade or vocabulary words that you crammed in the night before the test? Preparing with a free SAT test prep gives you a chance to learn the set up of the test and familiarize yourself with the types of questions you’ll be asked. This also opens doors for all types of scholarships based on your SAT scores.
While having confidence about the SAT test will be beneficial, don’t blow off preparing. Take a free SAT prep course so you can earn the best score possible.

For more information, visit B Line Test Prep


AP Classes vs. Dual Enrollment

In contemporary high schools, it is often possible for students intending on going to college to acquire a handful of college credits before they graduate. The two most notable programs are advanced placement (AP) and dual enrollment. AP classes are essentially college level courses where the student must pass a test on the respective subject at the end of the school year to determine if they qualify for credit. Dual enrollment programs allow students to attend classes at a local college while taking fewer classes in high school. Both programs have pros and cons to consider.

For AP courses, a student earning an A, B or C will receive an additional two points to their weighted GPA. While the final test is difficult and covers all material learned throughout the year, many colleges will grant three to four credits depending on the course taken and the score received. The added bonus is that it is completely free to take these classes and colleges are impressed by students taking on a rigorous schedule.

The major cons of an AP course revolve around the fact that, at the end of the day, it is still not a real college course. While secondary teachers are often very knowledgeable in their particular field, they spend considerably more time learning how to better manage their classrooms than gaining in-depth academic knowledge like a college professor. Furthermore, if a student does not receive a sufficient grade on the test, he or she will not receive college credit no matter what how well they did in the class itself.

Dual enrollment, on the other hand, provides students with access to an actual college course in order to earn credit. This means, not only more knowledgeable professors, but an exposure to a real college environment including testing procedures, group projects, lectures and following a syllabus verses having a teacher remind you constantly when an assignment is due. Also, like any college course, these classes last only one semester, and to receive credit, a student must simply pass the class with a C or better, rather than one stress-inducing test.

The downside of dual enrollment is that it is not as convenient. In order to get to the class itself, students may need to go back and forth from high school to college campuses every day. There is also the fact these courses will not give students any GPA boost. Also, many schools hold the student responsible to pay for the course and books out of pocket.

Both options give students a competitive edge in the eyes of a college admissions officer. Therefore, it is for each student and parent to decide which one best fits their needs.


Summer Time SAT Prep Can Go a Long Way

For many high school students, summer is the ideal time to prepare for the SAT. With summer vacation, most students will have larger blocks of time to devote to studying and even if you’re planning around a summer job or other activities, it is generally still a time of year with time to devote to studying. For students taking the SAT in the fall, starting to study with the new school year just isn’t enough time, getting a head start over the summer is a great option.

Free SAT courses can be a practical solution for many students looking to get their SAT prep off to a good start during the summer. Free SAT prep courses are readily available if you know where to look. In fact, B Line Test Prep is now offering free SAT prep online, a simple way to start out any student’s summer SAT study plan.

Taking a free SAT prep course will help you to learn tricks and techniques to study on your own. It will also give you a better idea of your own strengths and weaknesses. Looking through SAT books or taking practice tests online will feel a lot better once you’ve had a great foundation through an SAT course. If you plan to study with friends or get help from a teacher or family member, it will help to have a better idea of where you need to focus during your SAT prep.

Free prep isn’t just the best option for many families these days, it makes sense. With many great options available, you can feel good about making use of these options during your studying. By trying out different free options, you’ll also learn which test preparation methods make the most sense for you and begin to understand the ways that you learn best. This knowledge will be critical during the rest of your studying and as you enter college.

Free SAT courses like the ones offered by B Line Test Prep can be the perfect way to get your study plan off to a great start this summer and enter the new school year feeling ready to tackle the SAT. Every student is sure to feel less stressed when they have a great head start on SAT preparation.


Students Seeking Alternatives to Free SAT Prep at School

Many schools have felt the repercussions of their shrinking budgets over the past several years. Unfortunately for many students preparing for the SAT, programs in schools that used to offer free SAT prep are sometimes being cut or reduced. This means that students may need to do their homework and find free SAT test prep on their own.

B Line Test Prep is now offering free SAT prep that can help fill in these gaps left by high schools’ budget cuts. Online SAT prep is easy to fit in after school, on the weekends, and during summer vacation. When it’s free too, it becomes a no-brainer, every student preparing for the SAT can give it a try.

These days, not every student has the option of free SAT prep at school, smart students may need to do a little more outside of the school day to find the right prep course. A free online course just makes sense for students with hectic schedules and little time to devote to a regular classroom course. Plus, online SAT prep makes great financial sense, with a new free option, it’s something everyone can benefit from doing.

Some high schools are also taking proactive steps to maintain free SAT test prep in spite of cuts. B Line Test Prep is an option in this situation too and is now being used in high schools around the country. Schools are using the online course to track their students ‘process and supplement their remaining program. Schools trust B Line and know that when they are able to track their students’ progress, they are better able to target the parts of the SAT that need the most work, thus focusing their resources in the right places.

The course will help students to watch their progress and test their skills with practice tests designed to measure their progress and give students a great sense of how they’re doing in their SAT prep. Being able to see this progress will make SAT prep a lot less stressful and allow students to go into test day with a good sense of their abilities, ready to perform well on the SAT.


Breaking down the SAT: Sentence Completion

The sentence completion section of the SAT will test your vocabulary and ability to make sense of “context clues” while reading. In this section, you will be given questions that consist of sentences where either one or two blanks are present, indicating missing words. You then must choose from among five answers to find the word or words that make the most sense in the context of the sentence.

These types of questions make up about a fourth of the Critical Reading section of the SAT, so it is important to be familiar with them since you will only have a little less than a minute to answer each one. Online SAT test prep is a great way to familiarize yourself with the types of questions you will be confronted with and how to answer them.

A good strategy for answering these fill-in-the-blank questions is to read the sentence quickly and fill in your own word to complete the sentence. To do this, you will need to look for context words that the test writers include in the sentence. Words like “however,” “because of,” or “additionally” can clue you in as to whether you need a contrasting word or a complementary one.

After coming up with your own word to complete the sentence, look to see if there is a synonym for your word among the answers. Consider all the answers. If there is more than one that is close to what you chose, try reading the sentence with both of those words in context to see which makes more sense.

Let’s look at an example:

Even though Vincent van Gogh painted many of the world’s greatest masterpieces, people in his own time thought he was ____.

A) able B) inexpert C) unrivaled D) merited E) masterful

Reading through this sentence, we can see there is a clue word right at the very beginning: “even though.” “Even though” usually sets a sentence up for a contrast at the end-even though this happened, something unexpected was the outcome. Keeping that in mind, we can come up with our own word for the end of this sentence that contrasts with the fact that Van Gogh painted many of the world’s greatest masterpieces-perhaps, “not good.”

Looking through the answers, most of them have the opposite meaning from “not good,” except for B) inexpert. So B must be our answer.

This section is typically ordered from least to most difficult question, so be sure to leave enough time to answer the harder questions by moving quickly at the beginning. You can use online SAT test prep to practice answering questions and become familiar with techniques that will save you time.


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