The results just came in from our March SAT test takers, and that group blew us away. One student improved her SAT from a 1220 to a 1450 in just 6 weeks. It’s always affirming when a student applies what they learn in our Test Prep Boot Camp and gets the pay off with a great test result.
What’s even more amazing is what that score can mean for the student. Yes, it helps with college admissions. In a world where college costs just seem to keep rising, the better news is how those 230 points can save families thousands of dollars.
You can do a lot of the research for yourself. Most colleges these days make it pretty easy for families to figure out how much the school will cost. For those who don’t, you can use a website like College Scorecard or College Navigator. These sites have collected the information that is publicly available and are open to you without having to set up any sort of an account. Both of those sites offer tons of information for your comparisons. BigFuture, supported by College Board, also provides an “estimated family contribution” (EFC) calculator. If you’ve ever taken an SAT, PSAT, or AP exam, you already have an account for that service as well.
A quick look at a school like Baylor will tell you how much a higher score can mean. Most schools’ scholarships are tied to a combination of test scores and class rank or GPA, and the relationship is inversely proportional. GPA continues to be the most important factor in your application, so the higher your GPA the more you can qualify for and the lower your test score has to be to qualify.
With that in mind, a student in the top quarter of their graduating class and a 1220 on the SAT would qualify for $7,000 per year in scholarships from at Baylor. At 1450, the same student is going to qualify for $18,000 per year. $44,000 in scholarship money over 4 years. For a $600, 6-week course. That’s a pretty impressive investment. I’m not sure Bitcoin would have that sort of return over 4 years. It’s definitely less viable.
Baylor isn’t an outlier. Alabama has a series of scholarships for in-state students and out-of-state students that promise tens of thousands of dollars in savings. The in-state student who goes from 1220 to a 1450 and has a 3.5 GPA goes from $2500 per year to $10,470 per year. $32,000 in savings. An out-of-state student would go from qualifying for nothing to qualifying for $76,000 over 4 years.
Most schools will have similar programs. And those are just the institutional promises. Students can also piece together outside scholarships to defray additional costs. Higher test scores will make them more competitive for those awards.
The 230-point improvement isn’t an outlier. We regularly see students make 200-point improvements on the SAT or 7-point improvements on the ACT. We’ve come to expect students to make 150-point or 5-point improvements and we get concerned when they don’t make at least 120 or 3-point improvements. Our programs are intentional, and we know they work.
Most importantly, our programs can save you thousands of dollars on college tuition.