Frequently Asked Questions

When is the best time to take a prep course?

Rigorous classes, extracurriculars, and standardized testing makes high school a very stressful time for students. After witnessing students successfully master standardized testing, we strongly believe that 10th grade is the ideal time for a student to begin and complete their preparation for either the ACT or the SAT.

With this in mind, it is still possible to complete preparation in 9th or 11th grade. However, there are significant drawbacks and benefits to these options. Many students in 9th grade may lack the fundamentals taught in school that may appear on the ACT and SAT. But starting in 9th grade gives them more time to begin studying. Whereas in 11th grade, students would have learned all the fundamentals that would appear on the ACT and SAT. Unfortunately, 11th grade is touted as the most stressful year so students will be under a lot of time stress. Consequently, their GPA may be at stake.


What do I do if I miss a class?

Attendance for this course is imperative in order to achieve a high score. However, if a student is unable to attend a class due to another commitment, we offer an online video of the session that was missed in order to catch up. Students will only be given access to these online videos if they clearly express their schedule conflict to the teachers beforehand.


How are classes structured?

Having run through this course for multiple sessions, we have found that the class structure listed below empowers students with best opportunity to receive a perfect ACT score. Our first class is the only notes based class which covers the fundamentals of English. In each subsequent class, students will then take sections from previously administered ACT tests. As a class, we will analyze each question as to why it is correct and why it is incorrect. At the same time, we will point out all helpful tips and tricks. In a typical class period we will do three sections. Our general trend over the course is to begin with English, then Science, then Reading, and finally Math. All sections are thoroughly annotated and are posted to each student’s portal to allow them to review the material covered in class again at home.


What is your refund policy?

As educators, we understand that not all students can learn in certain environments. Consequently, we offer a two week period in which we will provide you with a full refund if the student does not wish to continue with the course. However, we will do everything in our power to make sure students have the best learning environment to master standardized testing.


Are classes group or individual based?

At Excel Tutoring, the class size is around 20 students. With a medium sized class, students are able to understand their peers’ way of thinking and are able to build on to their own critical thinking skills as a result. During the course, we push students to show their reasoning in front of the class and as a result, students can learn not only from the teachers, but from their peers as well. In addition, our group based classes foster a competitive spirit amongst the students. This results in higher scores for students all around.


Who teaches class?

All classes are taught by Arnav Ramu (ACT Score-35) and Jason Fernando (ACT Score- 36). Both tutors earned scores in the 99th percentile.


Should my child study for the ACT or SAT?

Simply put, all students should take both tests as they may perform better on one or the other. However, we strongly believe that the ACT should be taken first. Although there is more material on the ACT, this preparation carries over. Additionally, due to how the tests are graded, it is more likely that a student can achieve a perfect score on the ACT than on the SAT.


Should my child study take the ACT or SAT?

In the state of Michigan, all juniors will be required to take the SAT by their high schools. At Excel Tutoring, we believe that students should focus on the ACT during their sophomore year and focus on the SAT during their junior year. Taking these tests during the same school year will significantly increase the stress of an already difficult and course-heavy junior year. We recommend that students take our course during their sophomore year, but we will also provide assistance to those in their junior year.hat the ACT should be taken first. Although there is more material on the ACT, this preparation carries over. Additionally, due to how the tests are graded, it is more likely that a student can achieve a perfect score on the ACT than on the SAT.


Do colleges accept both the SAT and ACT?

Across the United States, all four-year colleges accept both the ACT and SAT. College admissions counselors use a score conversion table which allows both scores to be standardized. Thus, there is no inherent benefit to submitting one score or the other. It is important, however, to take both tests as this simply makes you a stronger candidate, and you may do better on one test or the other.


What score reporting policies do the ACT and SAT have?

The ACT and SAT both have score reporting policies that allow students to select and choose to report only certain scores. Thus, if a student performs poorly on a test, they do not need to report it and no college admissions officer can ever see that score.

Score Choice Policy- This allows students to pick and choose which scores they want to send to a university. Only the scores that are sent will be viewed by an admissions officer. Thus, they can not see how many times you took the test and what scores you received.

All Scores Must be Sent- Some universities require all standardized tests to be sent. A benefit of the ACT is that scores may be removed from a student’s record. Consequently, even if a school requires all scores to be sent, you may remove the score from your record.


What do admissions officers look for?

There are five important parts for a college application. Listed in order of importance as follows:

  • GPA
  • Standardized Test Scores
  • Extracurricualars
  • College Essays
  • Letters of Recommendation

Standardized testing, such as the ACT and SAT, carry a large weight in the college admissions process. Extracurriculars and essays very rarely make up for a low test score. As long as a student has a high GPA, high tests scores, and some extracurriculars, a student can get admission to almost any institution he or she applies to.


Can a high ACT or SAT score compensate for a low GPA?

A student’s GPA always takes precedence over a student’s test scores. However, if a student has achieved a high ACT or SAT score (34 or higher on the ACT or 1550 or higher on SAT), that will more likely than not compensate for a low GPA.