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Profile of The Princeton Review


Profile of The Princeton Review
The Princeton Review


The information below was taken from a telephone interview I had with Scott Kirkpatrick, President of Test Prep and Admission Services for The Princeton Review.

Princeton Review Background:

John Katzman, a graduate of Princeton University, founded The Princeton Review in 1981, initially teaching SAT preparation to fifteen high-school students. In 1984, he expanded to four U.S. cities and moved on to different graduate tests like the LSAT, MCAT and GRE. Currently, the Princeton Review, the second largest test prep company in the world, has 165 print and digital publications, 6,500 instructors, over 60 brick and mortar test prep sites, and boasts facilities in 20 countries across the globe.

Although the Princeton Review and Princeton University share a name, the company is not affiliated with the university in any way.

Test Prep Available:

The Princeton Review offers test prep for a myriad of standardized tests that can get you into college, like the ACT, SAT/PSAT, and AP exams, and into graduate school like the LSAT, GRE, GMAT, MCAT and more.

Study Programs:

Whether you're the type of person to study alone or need a large group to help facilitate your learning, the Princeton Review has you covered. They offer these types of study programs:

  • Private Tutoring: Work one-on-one with your own instructor and customized lesson plans.
  • Small Group Tutoring: Prep privately with an instructor and some friends, or they'll set you up with people in your area.
  • Classroom Courses: Learn in a larger setting with an instructor and set hours
  • Online Courses and Tutoring: Work at your own pace with customizable, interactive classrooms, tutoring, and tests.
  • Hybrid Courses: Figure out what learning situation works best for you, and build it.
  • Books: Study at your own pace in your own home.

Choosing a Program:

With all the test prep options The Princeton Review offers, making a choice can seem overwhelming. However, they have a process to help you choose the best program for you:

  • Educational Advisement: When you first contact Princeton Review, you'll get an initial interview to determine your educational needs
  • Diagnostic Test: After the interview, you'll be given a test that further explains your deficits and strengths.
  • Assessment: Once you've been tested, your advisor will work with you to set up the right course for your exact needs.

Test Prep Affordability:

The Princeton Review offers a full spectrum of offerings to meet every budget, starting with iPhone apps at for the SAT and GRE all the way to private tutoring. They regularly offer promotions and discounts for all products on their website, as well.

Princeton Review Advantages:

Overwhelmingly, Kirkpatrick believes that the Princeton Review's biggest advantage is the quality of the instructors. Every instructor must have 50 hours of training in Princeton Review's courses. They're observed teaching in action and on video, and must be able to adhere to the Princeton Review's strict standards. Most of the instructors are also close to the test they're instructing; enrolled undergraduates often teach the ACT and SAT courses. Most of the grad test teachers are graduate students headed toward their Masters degree. In some instances, the teachers are degreed several times – up to PhD.

The 3-Part Guarantee:

Kirkpatrick states, "We want to be an educational institution, not just a test prep company." With that in mind, they want your testing experience to be first-rate, so they offer three levels of guarantees:

  • Readiness Guarantee: If you don't feel ready to take your test, you can repeat the course or take a refresher course for free.
  • Satisfaction Guarantee: If for any reason you're not satisfied with your test score, regardless of whether it has improved or not, you can continue to work with the Princeton Review for up to a year.
  • Money back Guarantee: If your score doesn't improve after taking a course, you will receive a full tuition refund.

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