What is the best way to study for the SAT? With so many test prep options available, it’s hard to decide which option is right for you. One route many students take is attending an SAT prep camp—also known as an SAT boot camp or crash course.
What are SAT Prep Camps?
Prep camps are intensive, structured environments where students can prepare to take the SAT. There are a wide variety of camps all over the US, ranging in duration, price, and types of classes. They can be day camps or a month-long residential program and offer online or in-person options. At prep camps, students learn the ins and outs of the SAT. They learn test-taking strategies, become more comfortable with the format, and ultimately increase their score.
Is a Prep Camp Right for You?
There are several reasons why you might consider going to a prep camp:
- You want to boost your score. On average, student scores improve 50 to 250 points after attending a prep camp. Going to a prep camp will often give you tools and strategies proven to succeed by past students.
- You prefer structured studying over self-studying. Prep camps’ long hours and intensive sessions may seem painful to some, but to others, its the study environment they need and thrive in. While there are tons of online resources on the internet, it can be extremely overwhelming to filter through the good and the bad. A guiding hand can be very beneficial if you just want to focus on studying—not deciding what to study.
- You only have a short period time to study. Cramming is never ideal nor fun, but it happens to the best of us. Prep camps can range from summer, to a week, to even one day before your test date. They can give you all the essentials in a short period of time, just in time for your test date.
- You need to do well on your first try. There are many reasons why students can only take the SAT one time: an application or scholarship deadline nearing, financial reasons, etc. Regardless, if you’re only going to take it once, you should be as prepared as possible to make it count.
- You need a specific score. Prep camps can target the curriculum to your weaknesses and help you reach your goal score.
- You like making connections with teachers and other driven students. Some students learn best in group settings and teachers can become mentors even after the course ends. It’s a great opportunity to meet like-minded peers and bond over the college application process.
- You would like a guarantee on your money. Many prep camps guarantee your goal score or your money back. This can be a sigh of relief for parents who are unsure of the monetary investment, which can be quite high at times.
Best Prep Camps
1. Education Unlimited College Admission Prep Camp
Education Unlimited offers a college admission prep camp that prepares a student for the entire admissions process (including help on researching target schools and writing personal essays). They also specifically offer SAT-only versions of the curriculum. There are 35 hours of instruction and students take 3 full-length practice exams. Students have the opportunity to completely focus on the SAT at this camp, with no school, extra-curricular, or work distractions. Education Unlimited offers both online and in-person options.
Duration: 12 days
2. Duke University SAT Summer Boost
Take an SAT summer camp at one of the top universities in the US! In the course of one week, Duke will cover the crucial principles of math, techniques for reading comprehension, time-management skills, logical reasoning, and test-taking strategies. The camp highlights a fun, collegial environment where students can make friends while gaining a competitive edge. Duke’s camp is located on their campus in Durham, North Carolina.
Duration: 5 days
3. Crimson Review SAT Summer Bootcamp
Crimson Review’s intensive, 7-week course prepares students for the August 28th SAT. They offer 1-to-1 instruction and a serious environment to hone test-taking skills. Their course is suited for rising juniors and seniors and covers all sections of the SAT—Reading, Writing, Math, and the Essay. They incorporate the latest research from educational specialists in their teaching and methods. The Crimson Review also guarantees that students completing the program will increase their test scores by 250+ points or reach the 98th+ percentile.
4. Mastery Prep SAT Boot Camp
Mastery Prep offers a 1-day workshop, which is perfect for last-minute prep. It can also be a confidence boost right before your test if you struggle with test-taking anxiety. In one day, students learn time management skills, essential test-taking techniques, tips for the most important question times, and effective guessing strategies. Their workshops are flexible inconvenience and timing, offering both in-person and virtual options on weekdays and weekends.
Duration: 1 day
Price: Request a quote on their website
5. The End Result Boot Camp
The End Result offers small groups, capped at 8 students, and live instruction for maximum student engagement. They meet on Saturdays from 9:30 am to 12:30 pm over the course of 4 weeks. Students receive individualized feedback and coaching and also learn general and content-specific strategies. The End Result operates in Las Vegas, Chicago, Florida, and Los Angeles.
Duration: 4 weeks
Price: Call for a price quote
Prep Camps Don’t Seem Like the Right Fit? Try SoFlo Tutoring.
Preparing for the SAT is a marathon, not a sprint. SoFlo Tutors offers the same structure and targeted approach as a prep camp, but our tutors work one-on-one with a student in a low-pressure, friendly environment. SoFlo tutors teach from experience; they’ve achieved top SAT and ACT scores and attend top universities. Tutoring costs start at $60/hour and each tutor tailors every session for each student. Check out our tutoring services to book a session!