Prepping for college? Then it’s about time you get your acts together and dedicate your time to netting excellent scores on the SATs.
Needless to say, whether you get admitted to dream school depends on how well you can ace your SATs.
When it comes to SAT preparation, many students compare Prepscholar vs Princeton Review to find the best study resource. For that reason, PrepScholar and Princeton Review are two prep schools worth checking out. But chances are you’re probably wondering which is better PrepScholar or Princeton Review program in terms of features and pricing for SAT and ACT prep.
I hope that this overview helped you to make up your mind and take the right course for one of your biggest future exams, and tackling the college admissions process.
The main difference between PrepScholar versus Princeton Review are:
- PrepScholar has no mobile application, while Princeton does.
- PrepScholar offers two practice tests, whereas Princeton offers eight.
- Learners get 1 year of assistance with PrepScholar while Princeton offers only 6 months.
- Princeton offers additional email support. Princeton offers none.
For students preparing for the SAT and ACT, Princeton Review has long been the top prep resource.
PrepScholar, on the other hand, has recently surged to prominence in test prep industry and is now competitive with Princeton Review in terms of pricing and efficacy of test preparation.
In this in-depth analysis, I focus on the key aspects of both courses, offer our team’s opinions, and eventually declare one is better than the other.
Well, I believe it is necessary to see a side-by-side assessment of the essential components of each prep course to give the most thorough review of these two SAT & ACT prep courses and services.
Overall Comparison: Princeton vs PrepScholar
|Full-length Practice Texts||2 Practice Tests||8 Practice Tests|
|Video Content||150 hours of Video Lessons||60+ Video Lessons|
|Mobile Learning App||No||Yes|
|Length of Access||1 year||6 months|
|Prep Books||No||Yes, dozens are available on Amazon|
ACT and SAT Features of Providers for Students
The Princeton Review’s user interface is excellent and fairly intuitive. There is little space for mistakes with their mobile apps and online websites.
PrepScholar is the epitome of simplicity, with just three tabs on the top navigation bar and a very straightforward interface.
The design is simple and clear. The dashboard links to your core learning resources, the strategy tab links to your strategy courses, and the progress tab link to the progress tracking aspect of the website.
Supplemental Study Resources
Princeton provides a few online materials, in addition to the essential parts of your course, some of which are helpful and some of course materials which are not.
The SAT Advantage sessions are by far the most beneficial of these optional extras. These additional lectures are available to view both in-person and on-demand online.
Keep in mind that “An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.” – Benjamin Franklin
These classes drill down into in-depth review and testing techniques, touching on a wide range of subjects. You are allowed to ask questions when your tutor delves into the specifics of a certain scenario.
It’s just one more chance to speak with a Princeton Review subject-matter expert and gain additional insight.
Princeton Review Refund Policy
Princeton also boasts a very generous refund policy. If you purchase one of their prep products and are not satisfied with it, you can generally return it within 7 days for a full refund (minus shipping costs).
Princeton Review: How Is It Better than PrepScholar?
There’s a big difference between the Princeton Review or PrepScholar.
TPR was founded in 1981 and now operates on a large scale, employing over 4000 teachers and tutors in the United States and Canada. It offers a wide variety of various prep classes and courses for all kinds of standardized tests.
In all their courses they offer, you’ll find self-prep courses, live-online courses, in-person classes, and intensive boot camps, all designed to give you lots of intensive preparation before college admissions start.
Princeton Review is seen as a premium brand on the market, but its prices are more or less the same as other ones from the competition.
PrepScholar: How Is It Better than Princeton Review?
PrepScholar’s complete SAT online prep course costs less, at $397. The materials appear to have only recently been revised from the old to the new complete SAT online prep one; thus, they may still be a little stale.
The best part of this course is that it offers you access to over 700 videos in which knowledgeable instructors walk you through practice problems one at a time and provide thorough explanations.
Additionally, at the start of the course, you would need to complete a diagnostic questionnaire as well full length practice tests such as PARCC practice tests for standardized exams.
However, compared to the enormous number of resources you’ll receive from Princeton Review, that still doesn’t amount to much.
First, a knowledgeable educator who received an SAT score in the 99th percentile will tutor you throughout.
Second, you will have 24/7 on-demand tutoring available to you. Anytime you get stuck with any question, you can reach out to your assigned teacher and get a response within a couple of hours.
Moreover, with TPR, you will take a ton of practice tests for successful in SAT prep courses. The best thing is that 4 of them are proctored, which means you will have to complete them under the watchful eye of your instructor.
This is a great way to reduce exam-related anxiety because you’ll get a good idea of the actual exam. You will also receive 20 more practice exams to help you improve your SAT score.
Overall, TPR’s “1400+” is what I would suggest if you’re searching for a great day program that will ensure a good score.
- Complete SAT / ACT Online Prep
- PrepScholar Classes
- Complete + Tutoring
- Complete Premium
- Dual SAT + ACT
PrepScholar's Complete Prep option is the most popular package and is the foundation for all its other products.
This bundle comes with practice questions, exams, interactive text, and video lectures, all of which may be accessed for an entire year.
With a price of just under $400, this course is quite affordable compared to the offers of bigger test preparation businesses. When considering how much to spend on an SAT prep course, think about what specifically you need.Although it is not as inexpensive as Magoosh's absurdly low-cost bundles, it is still pretty economical.
"The aim of the college, for the individual student, is to eliminate the need in his life for the college; the task is to help him become a self-educated man." – George Horace Lorimer.
The Complete Prep package is then slightly modified for each subsequent course. This service is included in the PrepScholar Classes package, but it is enhanced by adding 9 live class hours to sat course.
Students gather in small virtual classrooms with their peers to participate in live lessons offered by some of PrepScholar's top professors. About $895 will be spent on this bundle.
By including private instruction from a PrepScholar SAT or ACT specialist, the Complete Plus Tutoring package expands upon the Complete Prep course.
Pricing for Tutoring starts at about $995, and you may choose how many hours you need.
The only differences between the Complete Premium course and its base-level equivalent are the additional 2 years of material access (for students requiring longer preparation times) and faster assistance. The cost of this bundle is around $580.
Last but not least, PrepScholar provides their Dual SAT + ACT package, which is quite popular these days, for students who need to study for both the SAT and the ACT.
By combining the Complete Prep programs for both exams, this option allows you to switch between them from your PrepScholar online account.
The supplies for the second exam will cost an additional $200 or more, bringing the total price to just about $600.
- Self-Paced Course
- Essentials Course
- SAT 1400+ course
- SAT 1500+ Tutoring
Fortunately, the fundamental course elements are mostly the same across all available course selections, and the differences between them in terms of guarantees or instructional hours are minimal.
The 4-course options are as follows:
- Self-Paced Course
- Essentials Course
- SAT 1400+ course
- SAT 1500+ Tutoring
There is no associated live class component in the Self-Paced course, which is purely online (in-person, in live classes online, or otherwise).
The bare minimum is provided to help you get ready for the SAT, which is the Princeton Review's least offer.
The only other things it has are practice exams, exercises practice questions, and video lessons for the classes. There are no textbooks, tutors, or live classes.
This prep class bundle costs about $300, but for an additional $200, Princeton's ACT and prep program option can be added.
The Princeton Review's most popular choice and universally accepted basic program are The Essentials. The same resources as the Self-Paced course are included in this bundle.
But it also includes extra practice examinations, textbooks, and 18 hours of interactive coaching. This set costs around $900 but is frequently available for a few hundred bucks cheaper during sales.
Princeton provides 18 hours of individualized tutoring time for its 1500+ course and 36 hours of live teaching for its 1400+ course to help you get this bonus point boost.
If you want to learn more about the average ACT tutoring prices, check this article.
It should be noted that the 1500+ course offers fewer overall hours, but we're referring to personal, individualized attention.
You should look closely at these courses if you're aiming for the highest possible score (whether to get into an institution ranked among the top 25 or for merit-based aid).
However, they are not inexpensive; the two bundles range in price from $2,200 to $6,900. More info on the SAT tutoring cost can be found in this article.
Quality of Learning and Value for Money
PrepScholar features more than 2,500 ACT practice tests and 7,100 SAT practical sessions combined.
Between the two practice tests, that comes to roughly 10,000 practice questions. to admit, it’s unlikely you’ll ever see the answers to all of these practice tests.
Simply said, there’s just a lot to cover. I appreciate PrepScholar providing this incredible number of questions, but chances are, you won’t ever need them.
After finishing the questions, you must go through the problems. Each question is accompanied by a written explanation that fully explains the problem. The degree of depth that these detailed explanations provide is amazing.
Many other SAT and ACT prep companies just briefly explain why the correct answer option is the best choice in a few phrases.
But I particularly enjoyed how the PrepScholar explanations are like mini-courses in and of themselves.
Your quiz results will determine if you have mastered the material or still need further Tutoring. The lesson is rotated back into the schedule to be reviewed afterward until you have grasped the subject.
PrepScholar takes no chances and wants to guarantee that you pass each module before you finish.
You move on to the following module in your list whenever you’ve done reviewing a certain subject. And until you can satisfactorily pass all your courses, the process typically proceeds in this manner.
Although it takes great effort, it also seems to go quickly. Since every learning module takes no more than 60 minutes or so, you’ll be able to make significant headway after plugging away for just a month or so.
Prepscholar will recommend that you take your first standardized mock exam after your first 6 lessons. This exam is conducted like the real thing.
Once you’re done, you’ll be fed feedback on your progress.
If you decide to submit your essay for evaluation, any of Prepscholar’s battalion of experts will give you feedback on it.
Don’t lose heart if you don’t score as high as you want.
This particular exam is meant full length practice tests to be taken after your first few lessons to get you familiar with how the real exam goes.
One of the best comprehensive SAT preparation curricula is the prep books offered by Princeton Review.
Princeton Review goes beyond the 60 hours of study that most other prep books and companies estimate you need to prepare for the SAT.
Princeton Review provides more than 140+ video lessons and lectures, 240 exercises, 2,000 practice questions, hundreds of practice exams, and maybe some degree of classroom teaching, depending on your chosen program.
But it is not just the sheer quantity of test prep materials and resources that impressed me with Princeton’s curriculum. More so than anything, I like the structure of the Princeton Review SAT course.
At the outset, Princeton prompts you to enter which days of the week you can study and for how long. You also enter your long-term SAT (and college) goals and take a diagnostic practice test.
Ideally “The aim of the college, for the individual student, is to eliminate the need in his life for the college; the task is to help him become a self-educated man.” – George Horace Lorimer.
They use this data to create a customized study plan for you that takes into account your goals, time constraints, and starting skill level. This personalized study plan also changes as you go forward in your job.
You are instructed to work on learning modules covering particular SAT themes within your study schedule, which may be accessible through the dashboard of your web platform.
Each of these study modules may be finished in around 30 minutes.
You will thus be given one study block on Thursday if you inform Princeton that you can study for 30 minutes on Thursdays.
Additionally, they will give you three blocks on Sundays if you inform them you can study for 1.5 hours on that day. You see what I mean.
Your study plan charts your progress through the course material and is regularly updated in light of your schedule and overall course performance.
These study units serve as the building blocks of your preparation program. Each study unit is broken down into two parts: a “Learn” component and a “Practice” component.
The unit’s Learn section handles the instructional tasks and imparts the knowledge you need to know to you.
This component generally takes the form of a module consisting of slides, a video, detailed lesson plans, and drills. You open the module from your dashboard, and it pops up right in the same window.
Main Disadvantages of the Platforms
- No Mobile App.
Unfortunately, PrepScholar does not offer a mobile app like many of its competitors do. Given that they are a 100% online course, it would be nice to see them provide a mobile-based application as many students like to study from their phones.
And with how busy today’s high schoolers are, it would be beneficial to slip in some studying between school and extracurriculars. So, this is a little disappointing.
- It might be challenging to choose the ideal tutor.
- It is among the priciest exam preparation methods, sometimes costing hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
- Lack of good in-person, classroom courses.
- Sometimes classes get canceled, and you have to wait for another date.
- Slightly higher prices than the competition.
- It sometimes lacks prompt customer service.
- You won’t always get a teacher with many years of experience.
- Access to the online platform could be a bit longer (usually, it’s around 4 months).
Is PrepScholar or Princeton Review better?
We rate the prep courses from both PrepScholar and Princeton Review extremely high but, ultimately, see PrepScholar as having the better overall SAT and ACT prep program.
Is PrepScholar good?
Unquestionably, one of the top SAT preparation programs is PrepScholar. This is a fantastic alternative if you’re seeking adaptable, thorough courses with individualized help and confident score-increase promises.
Is PrepScholar SAT worth it?
Yes. PrepScholar offers and delivers adequately on its score increases assurances.
Is Princeton Review a Good Website?
A comprehensive program is offered by PrepScholar, which ought to be effective for most college aspirants. PrepScholar outperforms on the study materials front with several hours of coursework, thousands of problems, and 14 total mock exams.