Breaking Down Vocabulary

Published Friday, January 23, 2015 by Alina Krjukova

So you’ve been studying your vocabulary list for the last few weeks, and you have a pretty good hang of it. You know the definitions, and you feel pretty comfortable about understanding the words in context, but what about the other hundreds of thousands of words in the English language? One thing that you can do to prepare yourself for a run-in with the more remote words is learn to dissect words and figure out their meanings based on the roots. By dividing words into familiar parts, you can learn how to decode even the… Continue Reading

A Foolproof Way To Increase Your Critical Reading Score

Published Tuesday, October 28, 2014 by Adam

If you’re having a hard time with the SAT, I’ll bet Critical Reading is your biggest source of pain. It’s the section that we at Excel see people struggling with the most, and it’s easy to see why. Grammar and math consist of complicated but concrete rules that you can break down into recognizable patterns and strategies. Critical Reading is a different ball game. It asks you for abstract thinking, knowledge of archaic vocab, and a high tolerance for boring writing. So if you’ve practiced and practiced and you’re still not seeing an upswing in… Continue Reading

Gearing up for Junior Year

Published Thursday, June 30, 2011 by Katie

The infamous Junior Year. If you have just finished your sophomore year in high school, you must confront this ordeal in September. But, in reality, junior year is not that bad. Sure, you may be taking multiple APs, the SATs are right around the corner, and your parents and teachers are constantly stressing the importance of junior year grades. But, with a couple of tips, you can endure the various junior year challenges. 1. Take a vacation before junior year. Being such dedicated, hardworking students, chances are you have spent your summer doing something academic…. Continue Reading

Vocabulary Distress

Published Wednesday, May 25, 2011 by Tarang

Vocabulary can be the most annoying part of life, including the SAT. We all remember the frustration of not knowing any of the answer choices in SAT sentence completion. Sadly this humiliation does not end with the SAT; some of us continue to struggle as we read material with difficult words. One must not be pusillanimous when it comes to approaching vocab words; in fact one should reach the prodigious ability to engage in lexicon snobbery on a daily basis. The best way to attain this level of skill is to peruse resources such as… Continue Reading

Princeton Nation

Published Wednesday, April 27, 2011 by Tarang

The title of this posts derives from the informal motto of Princeton University: “Princeton in the Nation’s Service and in the Service of All Nations.” Recently, I posted the SAT/ACT stats for Harvard and Yale. Rounding out the “Big Three,” is Princeton University. Princeton University often ties for first place with Harvard on many lists comparing universities in the United States. Surprisingly though, the term “Big Three” did not describe these universities because of their academics. Of course, Harvard, Princeton, and Yale (or endearingly termed HYP) have tough admissions requirements and rank as the oldest… Continue Reading


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