In February and March, I had the opportunity to watch over the shoulder of a high school junior who was taking Kaplan's Complete SAT Prep: Classroom Anywhere class. As a professor at a brick-and-mortar university, I tend to grumble about online learning. I'm also not thrilled that standardized tests carry so much weight that test prep courses exist in the first place. But the reality is what it is, and despite my initial apprehensions, I found the Kaplan course to be both engaging and effective. For those of you who are contemplating this type of course, I worked with the student to write up our impressions. Check out our conclusions here: Review of Kaplan's Complete SAT Prep: Classroom Anywhere.
I firmly believe that a disciplined student can prepare for the SAT or ACT with free online resources or a $20 book, but for the less-disciplined among us, the structure, schedule, and feedback from a class can be quite valuable. But don't forget that you can avoid the entire standardized test rat-race if you apply to some of these 850 test-optional colleges.