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Best SAT Tutoring

Our comprehensive guide details the best SAT tutors available to help you nail this all-important test

If your goal is to crush the SAT and get into a top tier university, your best bet might be with a 1-on-1 private tutoring package. For those looking for an edge, private tutors can often get some quick and easy score gains, and help you break through your weak areas. But where do you start in your search for one? Our team has thoroughly evaluated all the major SAT tutoring companies available and their services, including price per hour, quality of instructors, score guarantees, and whether any other study materials come bundled with the tutoring.

Best SAT Tutors Summary

To make navigating this guide more convenient, we’ve added jump-to links above so you can quickly find the best tutoring service for your needs.

PrepScholar SAT Complete + Tutoring

PrepScholar SAT Tutoring

  • Live Online
  • Bundled w/ Prep Course
  • Live Online
  • Bundled w/ Prep Course
Our Score

9.7

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Pros
  • Without a doubt, the most engaging and effective tutors we reviewed
  • Includes access to PrepScholar's #1 rated SAT prep course (massive value)
  • Great integration of the SAT prep course into the tutoring sessions
Cons
  • Tutoring cannot be purchased separately from course if you want a la carte
PrepScholar SAT Complete + Tutoring
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PrepScholar SAT Tutors

Without a doubt, our #1 overall pick for best SAT tutoring service is PrepScholar. And they take this crown for several reasons, but mainly because of their (1) top-notch tutors, (2) the way they integrate their top-rated prep course into the tutoring, and (3) their high-value price point.

Let’s begin with the tutors themselves. In short, PrepScholar’s team of tutors was the best we reviewed. We had the chance to sit on and audit tutoring sessions with students for close to 10 companies, and it was clear as day that PrepScholar’s tutors were the best.

prepscholar sat act lesson
One of the PrepScholar video lessons

Not only were they clearly crazy smart, but they were also great communicators. I personally loved how easily they broke down some of the tougher concepts and made them digestible. This is really the key to SAT tutoring – being able to make sense of complex subjects and deliver the message in a way that’s memorable and digestible for teens – and I just thought they did an awesome job in this respect.

Secondly, I was a huge fan of the way PrepScholar integrates their prep course right into the tutoring plan. With PrepScholar, most your individual work is done within the online prep program, and the tutor swoops in regularly to check on your progress, explain tough concepts, review practice test results, and give you targeted homework.

They also teach within the same teaching framework of the prep course, so the message and instruction is consistent. Many tutoring services don’t do this, and you’re forced to learn the same concept different ways; however, PrepScholar teaches everything in a streamlined and uniform fashion, which I really like.

Lastly, I love the value proposition of PrepScholar’s tutoring packages and how they offer bundle deals that combine their prep course with a fixed amount of tutoring hours. You can choose from bundles of just 4 hours of tutoring all the way up to 54 hours of tutoring. Thus, when you look at the cost of the tutoring alone, it’s around $120 to $150 per hour depending on your package.

prepscholar psat study plan
PrepScholar’s custom study plan

For example, the package with 4 hours of tutoring is $995; however, when you consider that the prep course comes with it, and you factor in the standalone cost of those materials and tools, the true cost actually breaks down closer to about $23 per hour of prep. So when you consider the tutoring plus course as a whole, it’s a value driven offering, especially as compared to other test prep providers.

Bottom line, our team was a huge fan of the PrepScholar course for its all-around value, quality of instruction, and included materials. Plus, I do just want to quickly note before we move on that they also offer a 160+ point score increase guarantee. This means that if your SAT score doesn’t improve by at least 160 points, you get your money back – another huge bonus.

Princeton Review SAT Tutoring

Princeton Review SAT Tutoring

  • Live Online or In Person
  • Bundles w/ 3 to 18 Hours
  • Live Online or In Person
  • Bundles w/ 3 to 18 Hours
Our Score

9.4

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Pros
  • Best available option for students who want in-person tutoring
  • Pretty reasonable price per hour ($150/hour)
  • Includes full access to Princeton's course + score guarantee
Cons
  • Slightly less personalized lessons and feel than PrepScholar
Princeton Review SAT Tutoring
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Princeton Review SAT Tutors

Second up on our team’s list is Princeton Review, and they primarily make our list for their in person tutoring services. While PrepScholar and a lot of other providers offer only online tutoring, Princeton Review is one of the few that offers in person tutoring as well – and of those, they’re the best.

Not only is their self-paced prep course included (like it is with PrepScholar), but we also really like their tutors. We got to sit in on a session with a Princeton tutor and a student in person and it had a great flow. The two seemed to interact really well, and I thought the tutor from Princeton Review did an awesome job of being patient and slowly bringing the student along with some of the tougher SAT problem types.

princeton review sat prep
The included Princeton Review prep course is a bonus

The reality is that for some students, online Zoom sessions just don’t cut it. They need the accountability and openness of meeting up in person, face-to-face, where you can quickly bounce things off the tutor who’s looking right over your shoulder. So if you’re that type of student, Princeton is our choice.

Now, if there is a knock on Princeton, it is that their packages are a little on the pricier side. Their hourly rates fall somewhere in the $150 to $180 range. Though again, their prep course is included and offers a lot of value.

Kaplan SAT Tutoring

Kaplan SAT Tutoring

  • Live Online
  • Packages From 10-40 Hours
  • Live Online
  • Packages From 10-40 Hours
Our Score

9.1

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Pros
  • Tutoring includes a mountain of SAT resources and study tools
  • Highly effective strategies that have been honed for years
  • Kaplan's SAT tutors are straight gurus with decades of experience
Cons
  • Somewhat of a corporate, sterile feel
  • More expensive rates than most other companies
Kaplan SAT Tutoring
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Kaplan SAT Tutors

Taking the #3 position on our best list is Kaplan. And they make our list for two pretty simple reasons: their tutors are absolutely top-notch and they include a boatload resources and study materials with their tutoring packages.

I’ll quickly run through what you get when you opt for one of their bundled tutoring packages:

  • 8 full-length practice tests with score analysis,
  • 4 hardcopy prep books,
  • access to on-demand practice questions in their Qbank,
  • 50 on-demand video lessons,
  • and a bunch more.

In short, it’s a lot of extras. Kaplan just piles on the prep material with their tutoring, and makes it one of the more immersive prep experiences on the market. So if you’re looking for an intensive experience, this will likely be it for you.

Kaplan SAT Prep Lesson
Another view of one of Kaplan’s stellar video lessons

In addition, we thought Kaplan’s tutors were awesome. From a knowledge standpoint, they can’t be rivaled. They’ve each got decades of experience teaching to the SAT under their belt and are clearly gurus.

The only thing I’d say though is that they did have a bit of that sterile, sort of corporate feel, which I guess shouldn’t be a total shock given Kaplan’s size and structure. But overall, I thought they were awesome.

And in terms of pricing, Kaplan is sort of right in the middle-to-high end of the pack with rates running from $115/hour up to $200/hour depending on package size.

Varsity Tutors SAT

Varsity Tutors SAT Tutoring

  • Live Online or In-Person
  • Hundreds of Tutors
  • Live Online or In-Person
  • Hundreds of Tutors
Our Score

9.0

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Pros
  • Some of the cheapest SAT tutoring rates available (as low as $20/hour)
  • Massive list of independent SAT tutors to choose from
  • Cool screening tool matches you with your 'best fit' tutor
Cons
  • Tutors can be hit and miss as each uses their own teaching methods and strategies
  • No included prep courses or tools like you get with full prep companies
Varsity Tutors SAT
Best Price/Hour Frequent Promos

Varsity Tutors SAT Tutoring

Last up on our list is Varsity Tutors, who takes our best budget tutoring crown for their cheap rates. And honestly, Varsity Tutors isn’t farther up our list because while price is really important and everyone wants a deal, in my experience these more broad-based type of tutoring services can be a little more hit and miss than the tutors from focused test prep companies like PrepScholar, Kaplan and Princeton Review. And by “broad-based” tutoring services, I simply mean companies where you pick a tutor from a job board-style website.

This is largely due to the fact that the instructors from Varsity Tutors really don’t follow a particular teaching framework for their SAT instruction. Instead, each individual tutor has their own method of teaching to the SAT.

And don’t get me wrong, you can find a gem of an SAT tutor on Varsity Tutors for less than half the cost of what some of these test prep companies charge; however, you could also end up with a complete hack who doesn’t really know what they’re doing and you end spending money just to regress. Like I said, it’s just hit and miss.

This is in comparison to the tutors from SAT-focused test prep companies that are trained to follow specific methods and strategies that have proven to be successful year after year. So really that’s why our team, generally speaking, trusts companies like PrepScholar and Princeton Review a little more than websites or companies like Varsity Tutors.

Varsity Tutors SAT
Varsity Tutors’ cool screening tool to match you with the right tutor

But with that said, of these types of general tutoring sites, Varsity Tutors is the best. They do a good job vetting the tutors they list on their site and make sure they know what they’re doing.

Plus, the hourly rates you can get with Varsity Tutors can be substantially lower. It looks like their tutors’ rates vary from $20 per hour on the low-end all the way to up $175+ on the high-end.

Bottom line, if money is tight and you just can’t afford the price tag for some of these bundled tutoring + prep packages from the test prep companies, Varsity Tutors may be a good option. You may be able to find a dynamite tutor for under $75 per hour – it’s just a little bit of a gamble.

Also, with Varsity Tutors, you can find a tutor in your area if you prefer in-person instruction. So overall, there are definitely some nice pros with Varsity Tutors. I’d recommend checking them out and at least going through the initial screening process. You never know what you might find.

FAQ

Who are the best SAT tutors near me?

With all the advances in online tutoring, finding an SAT tutor near you isn’t as important as it used to be. Nonetheless, read our full guide for the best SAT tutors in your area.

How much does SAT tutoring cost?

SAT tutoring ranges widely in price, from as low as $20 per hour, all the way up to $200+ per hour for premium services with extra features.

Is online SAT tutoring worth it?

Online tutoring is a very viable option these days given the advances with video conferencing and shareable screen tech. In fact, it can be more efficient and effective than in-person tutoring.

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