That Dude Knows



...the SAT

...the ACT

...the SSAT

...the GMAT

...the GRE

...undergraduate and graduate school admissions essays

Two big mistakes committed by most standardized test prep courses/materials and students

The vast majority of courses and books treat standardized tests as though they are similar to the types of tests that teachers give in classes. That makes no sense!! Class tests are designed to test your content knowledge; standardized tests are designed to test a combination of content and how you think (and on some tests, how you think is more important than the content). So why does the test prep world seem to be so stuck on content and provide only cursory coverage of the psychologies of test-taking and test-writing? Mastering those elements can have a huge impact on score improvement.

A second big mistake is that many students fall into the trap of thinking that buying the book with the most questions is somehow better. Doing every question under the sun without first understanding what it is that you're practicing just reinforces bad habits and does little to improve your score. Studying with a purpose matters more than simply cranking through a ton of questions.

For more on both of these topics, check out the Psychology of Standardized Tests page.

What makes THAT DUDE KNOWS different?

I don't just teach content; I also help you learn to think like a test-taker and like a test-writer. Sure, if you have glaring holes in your grasp of the underlying subject matter, you're going to have a bad time, so we better make sure you know the content. But the test-taker and test-writer psychologies are critical, and almost every tutor/book/course falls woefully short on instilling them. I don't.

I'll help you spend your time wisely. Doing every practice question on the planet might result in some improvement, but it sure isn't the way to maximize the return on your time and won't ever be as good as really learning what makes questions similar to or different from each other and why those similarities and differences matter.

I won't tell you that you're likely to hit a specific score unless I really believe it. If you want someone to tell you that you can do anything, call your mom. I'll be honest with you about where I think you can get...and how much work (hint: probably more than you hope) you'll need to put in to get there!

I'll hold you accountable. I love working with students who put in the work between tutoring sessions, and I can't stand working with students who think that showing up for tutoring is some sort of magic pill that means they don't need to practice and practice and practice between sessions. If you're not doing the work, I'll fire you as a client. Yes, really!

Get started

Check out the Work with THAT DUDE page, which lists contact info and explains many of the FAQs.