Our philosophy is guided by the notion that students perform optimally when paired with tutors who complement their particular needs and learning styles. All of our expert tutors are hand-selected for their dynamic and engaging personalities, in addition to their outstanding academic achievements and tutoring experience. At Pinnacle Prep, we are committed to getting to know our students and giving them the specific tools, confidence, and motivation they need to succeed on their tests and, often, in their academics, too.
The Pinnacle Prep method — proven to raise scores an average of 240 points per student (our record holder improved by 620 points!) — consists of three key components: recognizing indicators in problems, developing skills and techniques, and building experience.
We have spent countless hours classifying and categorizing thousands of questions on actual tests. One of the most important things we have found is that there are signals in the questions that can lead students to the answer quickly. The ability to recognize these indicators allows students to bypass the “setting up” and “wondering” time and move right on to the “doing,” with maximum efficiency.
Developing Skills and Techniques
Students may be a little rusty with their fundamentals (arithmetic, vocabulary, grammar, and other areas), or they may have never grasped certain concepts completely when they first learned them in school. As an essential first step, we help students solidify the necessary fundamentals and skills, raising the ceiling of their potential score.
However, fundamentals are not enough! That is why we have also designed specific techniques for attacking the many different sections of the tests. These techniques provide students with maximum efficiency, help them to solve problems they otherwise could not, and instill them with confidence. Knowing what to expect and what to do when you see indicators for specific techniques are the keys to success.
Nothing beats the tried-and-true method of “practice makes perfect.” Taking practice tests under test-day conditions gives students the experience and confidence they need to boost their scores. Our approach ensures a steady regimen of actual exams, including free mock exams administered in multiple locations across the tri-state area before major test dates. At Pinnacle Prep, we work tirelessly to provide students with the structure, focus, strategy and motivation to perform their best.
We are incredibly selective when hiring tutors. Not only are they top graduates of leading universities, but they are also dynamic, interesting people with engaging personalities who relate well to teenagers. All tutors are thoroughly trained in our unique methods and techniques — proven to help students get higher scores. But perhaps most important of all, we go to great lengths to carefully match each student with the right tutor. A good match can make all the difference in motivating and inspiring students to do their very best.
We offer personalized, dedicated service. Each student’s test preparation plan is tailored specifically for him or her and sessions are scheduled at the student’s convenience. Our tutors meet with students one-on-one in the students’ homes or via videoconference. We use proprietary materials and methods that are proven to work. We provide regular feedback to parents and are always available to give updates and discuss progress.
Academic Advisors play an integral part in Pinnacle Prep’s success. Academic Advisors receive regular feedback from tutors, call parents to keep them updated, and collect feedback from parents and students. Academic Advisors are available to answer any questions students or parents may have. Whenever you have a question, you can speak to a trained professional who will be able to give you answers.
Pinnacle Prep has developed exclusive, proprietary study materials for our students, including a 290-page Manual and a 170-page Workbook, which we use in addition to official tests published by the test makers. Our Manual contains an arsenal of techniques and approaches for all the questions students will encounter, and the Workbook contains a reading list, word roots list, and hundreds math and grammar practice problems sorted by techniques and skill areas.
Through exhaustive research, we have identified the most important concepts and techniques for test-takers to master, and together with our tutors, our Manual and Workbook help students to master these key areas. When a student asks, “What is the most important technique to know in the math section?” or “How can I make the best use of my time in the reading section?” our materials provide a straightforward answer. Clear examples, step-by-step explanations, and guided practice problems provide a framework for understanding, and sample tests allow students to apply their skills in different ways.
Complimentary Mock Exams
Pinnacle Prep offers complimentary mock exams to our students in the fall and spring at convenient locations. Mock exams provide a simulated test-taking environment and are great for dry runs before the actual test. So many uncontrollable things, from outside sounds to proctor idiosyncrasies, can derail a student on test day, and mock exams are valuable tools to ensure that students are prepared for anything.
For the students taking these mock exams, the exam itself will count as their homework for that week, and students will review the test with their tutors in their next sessions.
Test Planning: What to take, and when?
ACT? SAT? ISEE? GRE? Many students and parents are overwhelmed by all the standardized tests out there. What are they all for? When should students take them? Call the Pinnacle Prep office to construct a detailed test plan specifically designed for you!
Students entering Middle School and High School
SSAT – Secondary School Admission Test (for many private and boarding schools)
ISEE – Independent School Entrance Exam (for most NYC private schools)
SHSAT – Specialized High School Admissions Test (for Stuyvesant, Bronx Science, and Brooklyn Tech)
High School Sophomores and Juniors
PSAT/NMSQT – Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test
PreACT – Preliminary ACT
High School Juniors and Seniors
Subject Tests and AP exams – Tests on subjects ranging from biology to literature, Spanish to U.S. history, math to Latin
Applicants to Graduate School
GRE – Graduate Record Examination
LSAT – Law School Admission Test
MCAT – Medical College Admission Test
GMAT – Graduate Management Admissions Test
2019-20 Academic Year
August 24, 2019
October 5, 2019
November 2, 2019
December 7, 2019
March 14, 2020*
May 2, 2020
June 6, 2020
September 14, 2019
October 26, 2019
December 14, 2019
February 8, 2020
April 4, 2020
June 13, 2020
July 18, 2020**
PSAT Dates (School handles registration)
October 16, 2019 (Primary test date)
October 19, 2019 (Saturday test date)
October 30, 2019 (Alternate test date)
October 19, 2019
November 16, 2019
December 14, 2019
February 8, 2020
March 7, 2020
April 25, 2020
June 13, 2020
*Subject Tests are not offered on the March SAT date
**The July ACT is not offered in New York or California
***Flex Test also available
Click Here for SAT registration information
Click Here for ACT registration information
How long has Pinnacle Prep been around?
David Gordon, our CEO, founded Pinnacle Prep in 2002. Since Pinnacle’s inception, David has relentlessly studied standardized tests and analyzed student performance, in constant pursuit of the optimal approach to these tests. Our students outperform the industry standards, and their score gains continue to rise.
How many tutors do you have?
We currently have approximately 40 dynamic tutors, each of whom has terrific qualifications, has successfully completed our extensive and rigorous training program, and stays in close touch with the office regarding his or her students’ progress and challenges.
How do you pick a tutor for my child?
In the beginning, David was our sole tutor, and when his students did well, he was fortunate to receive many kind referrals from happy parents and students. Within a year, his schedule was full, so he did what every other company does: he hired tutors to take on the students his own schedule could no longer accommodate. Rather than simply assigning tutors to students blindly, David soon found that students were better served if he or a manager did the first session with every new student. At that first session, the manager gets to know the student a little bit, gets a feel for the student’s strength and weaknesses, and also gets a sense of which of our tutors would make the best fit for that student.
How do you decide which tests to take?
After working with a student in the first session, the manager then sits down with the parents to customize a test plan. Our goal is to construct the optimal test plan that will give the individual student the best possible chance to get the best possible score. It is important to take into consideration the student’s academic and extracurricular schedule, the SAT, the ACT, and, if applicable, Subject Tests and AP exams. Ideally, we want to find a way to implement a successful plan with minimal distractions from our students’ often-intensive academic demands. Of course, test planning is highly individualized, so if you would like to discuss designing a customized test plan for your child, just give us a call (800-665-7737), and we’ll be happy to talk through the options with you.
What sort of ongoing support do you provide?
This is what our office staff is here for! Our Academic Advisors stay in close touch with both tutors and families in order to provide support and feedback on all sides. In addition, we are always available to talk with you or answer any questions that you might have.
Where do your sessions take place?
We come to your home! Sessions typically take place in students’ homes, but we will also come to a local library or school — wherever is most convenient for students.