Test preparation

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Test preparation (abbreviated test prep) or exam preparation is an educational course, tutoring service, educational material or a learning tool designed to increase students' performance on standardized tests. Examples of these tests include entrance examinations used for admissions to institutions of higher education, such as college (e.g. the SAT and ACT), business school (the GMAT), law school (the LSAT), medical school (the MCAT), and graduate school (the GRE) and qualifying examinations for admission to gifted education programs.[1]


Major companies offering test preparation services include:

Resource providers[edit]

Most companies and educators that offer test preparation services also offer traditional (hard copy) and technology-based learning tools, such as books and other printed matter, software, websites, hand-held devices, or content for such devices. So do most test makers, publishers of self-help, instructional and educational materials, and makers of hardware and software.

Test makers[edit]

Third parties[edit]

  • Barron's Educational Series - publisher of books and educational materials
  • CliffsNotes - publisher of study guides
  • The Complete Idiot's Guides - publisher of instructional reference books
  • For Dummies - publisher of instructional/reference books
  • Gary Gruber - educator and author
  • McGraw-Hill - publisher of books and educational materials
  • Peterson's - publisher of books and educational materials
  • SparkNotes - publisher of study guides
  • Study Notes - publisher of study guides
  • Texas Instruments - technology company that offers test-maker approved calculators and a variety of test preparation and test-taking tools
  • John Wiley & Sons, Inc. - creates products and services that help customers become more effective in the workplace and achieve career success. It brings to life the ideas and best practices of thought leaders in business, finance, accounting, workplace learning, management, leadership, technology, behavioral health, engineering/architecture, and education to serve these communities worldwide.


Some test-preparation programs have been proven to help students improve test scores,[2] but others may have little effect.

Test preparation for the SAT is a highly lucrative field.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Jenny Anderson (February 17, 2013). "Schools Ask: Gifted or Just Well-Prepared?". The New York Times. Retrieved February 28, 2013. 
  2. ^ American Book Company Validation Study
  3. ^ http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/682204/2009_worldwide_exam_preparation_and_tutoring