Princeton Review SAT Prep Review: Is it Worth It?

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Are you looking to find the best way to prepare yourself for the SAT?  Are you on the fence about whether the Princeton review sat prep is right for you?  If either of these questions describes you, then you have come to the right place.  There is no doubt that the SATs are hard, but with the right study materials, you can conquer the exam.

The Princeton review has been known to provide some of the best SAT prep courses around.  From great teachers to great content, they have it all.  This article is here to verify if that is true.  Imagine spending hundreds of dollars on what you thought was the best online SAT prep available only to find that it was a bust.

Outside of merely paying for the test prep, you are now responsible for paying for an exam retake on top of that.  Don’t worry; we won’t let that be you. This guide will contain all of the information you need to decide on if you should buy the Princeton Review SAT prep course.  This includes information from past test-takers, reviews, and even screenshots of what they can offer you.

Taking the SAT exam is stressful enough without the added hassle of finding the right preparatory course.  To gain insight into the Princeton Review and all it has to offer, keep reading.

Before you read this though, check out our Magoosh SAT prep review here. We think Magoosh provides better value for students’ SAT prep budgets today.

What's the Story Behind the Princeton Review?

What’s the Story Behind the Princeton Review?

The Princeton Review is a company best known for its standardized test preparation materials.  If you have taken or are in the process of taking a College Board test or a certification test, you have more than likely seen or used their material.  The Princeton Review is known as a college admissions services company; however, they are so much more.

John Katzman and Adam Robinson co-founded the Princeton Review.  They started the company in 1891.  It was started after the two left college and began to provide SAT prep services to a group of students in New York City.  You may even find that some of the early Princeton Review books were even contributed to by these men.

The Princeton Review provides an abundance of information and prep materials for typical college exams like the SAT, ACT, and the GRE.  However, they also offer a host of other materials.  Their expertise has graduated to a variety of different areas and now prepares students for several various tests.  These tests include the like of the SSAT, CFA, MCAT, and even the LSAT.  Their audiences range from high school students and college students to graduates and professionals.

The services they offer are no longer confined to physical or even electronic books.  The Princeton Review provides several other services.  These services include online quizzes, online or in-person tutoring, college admissions counseling, in-class courses, and so much more.  When you think of test prep, their name should be the first to come to mind.  With over 35 years in business, they are revolutionizing the world of test prep.

Why Choose the Princeton Review for Your SAT Prep Course?

Why Choose the Princeton Review for Your SAT Prep Course?

Proven test-taking tips and strategies: The Princeton review provides an abundance of tips and tricks for mastering the SAT.  They take the most common mistakes and teach students how to overcome them.  The Princeton Review focuses on how to help you become a better test taker.  They prioritize assisting students in getting the maximum score in a minimal amount of time.

Educated, Patient & Compassionate Educators: One continuously evident thing is that the Princeton Review hires knowledgeable and qualified staff.  Many of the reviews coming from students rave about the patience and the knowledge that their tutor or instructor possesses.   These individuals are the backbone of the Princeton Review and continuously keep students coming back and even referring people they may know.

These individuals are incredibly impactful and ultimately make or break a person’s decision to purchase from the Princeton Review.  Many of the reviews read something to the effect of, “My SAT instructor was fantastic.  She was very engaging and on top of the material to be covered.  The online resources were a huge tool, as well.”

Progress Reports & check-ins on how you are doing on the material:  Anything you do in the online portal is tracked and used for your advantage on the SAT exam.  The feedback you receive is tailored toward your progress and aims to strengthen your hold on the material.

An abundance of quality test taking material: The Princeton Review offers no shortage of material for students to utilize in preparation for the exam.  Outside of typically printed materials, students also gain access to PSAT readiness materials, parent portal apps, on-demand tutoring, practice exams, and practice drills.  This still is only a small subset of what the Princeton Review offers.  Students can also purchase the ACT & SAT prep together for access to both sets of materials.

Effective plans and dashboards to keep you focused: The My Campus dashboard allows you to get all of your essential information from one source.  This area will show you all of the courses which you are currently enrolled as well as providing notifications with reminders for homework, practice exams, and registering for the ACT.  These notifications will all be housed in the green banner on your dashboard page.

Students can also use the dashboard to ensure they are meeting and completing the tasks to follow their test plans.  It will provide you with your daily tasks and how they will affect your score.  If you have completed any homework or practice exams, the Princeton Review will provide you with a competency score to gauge your progress.

You can even use your weekly planner to complete your studies.  If an item in your study plan has not been completed, it will move to your next available study time so that it is not forgotten. If you’re worried about what to expect on test day or even what to bring for the exam, your student dashboard will have it all.

You don’t even have to choose between the ACT & SAT: If you’re on the fence about choosing between the ACT and the SAT, you no longer have to.  You can prepare for both.   The Princeton Review Self-Paced ACT & SAT option allows access to prep materials for both tests.  Students have the option to purchase the SAT only or the SAT in conjunction with the ACT.  This package includes SAT & ACT practice questions, as well as full length and single section practice exams.

Practice makes perfect: The Princeton Review wants to ensure that you are adequately prepared for your exam and have included an abundance of test-taking practice materials in with their courses.  With the many programs offered, students can take advantage of proctored practice exams, which simulate the real test as well as additional practice exams available to them online.  Aside from these practice exams, students are provided with online instructional content with sample questions and examples.

The Recommendation Engine makes everything personal for you: This technology zeros in on your performance on the Princeton Review SAT Practice test and a variety of drills to ensure that you are using your time effectively and focus on drills, which will be better for you. It aids in breaking down your next steps and creating actionable items for you to work on.

What Types of SAT Prep Courses Does the Princeton Review Offer?

What Types of SAT Prep Courses Does the Princeton Review Offer?

The Princeton Review offers an abundance of material for a variety of price points.  Though some packages may be quite pricey, they do not come with a shortage of amenities.  These packages are designed to ensure that you do well and will be able to conquer the SAT.  Currently, there are five options that students can take advantage of via the Princeton Review site.


The 1400+ package guarantees that students will receive a score of 1400 or above.  If not, they will receive a refund.  However, refunds are only granted for students who start with a 1200 or higher.  This package includes 36 hours of instruction, with courses being online or in person.   After purchase, students will receive four proctored Princeton Review SAT practice tests, which will stimulate the real exam as well as 20 practice tests.

This package also features on-demand tutoring; the Princeton Review SAT practice books, a personalized study plan as well as access to the Self-Paced ACT and PSAT material.  This package is perfect for students looking to get those extra points to make the Ivy League scores.

Ultimate Package

The Ultimate package is another option for SAT Prep that the Princeton Review offers.  This innovative option includes both the ACT and SAT self-paced options.  Ultimate Includes 18 hours of focused instruction and unlimited access to SAT Advantage LiveOnline Sessions.

The package also includes an abundance of personalized material specifically tailored to you and what you need to learn.  This includes homework, study plans, and even goal setting.  Don’t let the fear of failure stop you from purchasing this package.  If you don’t score higher, you will be eligible for reimbursement.

Private Tutoring

Private tutoring is always an option for students through Princeton Review.  Tutoring is the most personalized approach, and you will receive a tutor who has been specifically matched to your goals.  Tutoring includes Full length and single subject practice exams with access to over 2000 practice questions.

Users even receive practice materials free of charge.  This includes The Princeton Review's SAT review books and The College Board's, The Official SAT Study Guide.  This is an excellent option for students who are looking to take the exam within eight weeks and looking to get the highest score possible.

SAT & ACT Self-Paced/ SAT Self-Paced

The self-paced programs allow users to practice for the SAT at their own pace. With these options, users are provided with a variety of materials.  This includes over 350 drills to practice with, more than 3200 practice questions, and even AP Online video lessons.  The self-paced options can be purchased with the ACT prep as well or alone.  The program also comes with the guarantee that if you are not 100% satisfied or your score does not rise; you can retake the program for free.

Cram Course

Cram course gives students an added push before the actual exam.  It is a 6-hour live online cram course.  It includes strategy sessions and virtual classroom lessons.  With this option, students receive two full-length practice exams and score reports as well as 8 section centered exams.

Which Princeton Review SAT Prep Course Should You Get?

Which Princeton Review SAT Prep Course Should You Get?

Which program you should purchase all depends on your level of need.  If you simply need a slight push right before the exam and are generally good at studying on your own, the self-paced options or the Cram Course may be perfect for you.

The Self-Paced option allows you to work on your own time and utilize the multitude of video content available to you.  Whereas, if you need an extra push or are wanting to do a final instructional review, the Cram course is a great alternative.

If you are looking to get into a top ivy league school, the 1400+ program may be the one to give you the push you need.  This will get you into the Top 30 school of your choosing.  This option is also best for individuals who are starting with a 1200 as it is more likely that their score will make the jump.  The program is also flexible with offering in-class and online instruction.

If you are looking for the most robust and full review, the Ultimate is just what you need.  You get a full arsenal of printed review materials, full score reports on areas that may need improvement, and personalized homework & study plans.

If you are looking to gain insight into the concepts you have been struggling with, tutoring is the perfect solution.  This avenue offers the most personalized approach to the SAT.  These individuals aid you in making a study plan that will work specifically for you.  Users still gain access to practice material and several applications which allow for open communication.

Does the Princeton Review Offer a Score Guarantee or a Refund?

Does the Princeton Review Offer a Score Guarantee or a Refund?

If you are skeptical about investing in the Princeton Review Programs, many of them offer a score guarantee, the retaking of a program, or will provide you with your money back.  All of this depends on the program which you have selected.   Be sure to check the score requirements before purchasing your chosen program.

Programs like the 1400+ require that you have a minimum of a 1200 starting score and that you have done everything in the program possible to increase your results.  If you did not receive a 1400 but did not exhaust the resources to study for the exam, you will not get your money back.

If you are opting to join a tutoring program, you must submit your current scores as a baseline.  If you scored a 1250, the tutoring program will grantee a 150-point increase.  If you scored over a 1260, the Princeton review guarantees a 1400.

Does the Princeton Review SAT Prep Get Results?

Does the Princeton Review SAT Prep Get Results?

If you’re asking if the Princeton Review gets results, you must not have read their reviews.  We are here to tell you that they most certainly do.  The Princeton Review site offers no shortage of reviews and customer testimonials from parents and students just like you.

If you are looking for one of the best online SAT prep courses, this is it. Though a bit pricey, the value is unmatched.  The Princeton Review provides not only the technical and online resources for success, but they also offer engaging instructors and the print material you need to do well.

Even if you do not opt to take advantage of their tutoring or any other program, the Princeton Review provides an abundance of content for students to utilize within their studies.  Their books are often highly recommended, no matter the test.

The Princeton Review provides the needed materials for the student to succeed.  However, it is up to the student to put in the work they need to get the score they desire.  No matter how good your instructors or the platform is, the program won’t work unless you do too.

Is the Princeton Review SAT Prep Worth the Money?

Is the Princeton Review SAT Prep Worth the Money?

The Princeton Review is not one of the leaders in test prep for no reason.  They offer students an abundance of information, practice, and content to ensure that they do well.  Teens who have used the program and been devoted to completing the homework and the assignments given to them generally do well.

Many parents question is the Princeton review worth it.  However, how can setting your child up for success not be?  Students and parents rave about the knowledge of the instructors and the differences they generally see in their children.

The tutors and instructors they employ are top-notch.  They are engaging and passionate about seeing students do well.  That alone makes it one of the best online SAT prep courses.  Read through the Princeton Review SAT Prep course reviews, and you’ll hear the same sentiment echoed several times.

Who Shouldn't Get SAT Prep from the Princeton Review?

Who Shouldn’t Get SAT Prep from the Princeton Review?

If you are someone who is not able to retain information from an in-class atmosphere or someone who is generally a good test taker, the Princeton Review may not be for you.  Many students feel like they need a course or the classroom structure to do well, but most do not.

There is only so much an instructor can do, especially if you aren’t willing to put in the effort yourself.  The Princeton Review programs are for teens who are incredibly disciplined and ready to learn.   It will take time, energy, and devotion to ensuring you get the score you are waiting for.

Alternatives to Princeton Review ACT Prep

Alternatives to Princeton Review ACT Prep

If you’ve gotten this far and you have determined that the Princeton Review SAT prep courses are not for you, don’t worry, there are other alternatives. Some students have also proclaimed these alternatives as the best SAT prep courses.  These include courses like Khan Academy, Prep Scholar, Kaplan, e Prep and more.

Khan Academy

The Khan Academy offers online SAT prep courses that are hard to beat as they are entirely free.  They provided several practice exercises, instructional videos and were even created in partnership with the College Board.  With this option, students gain access to 8 full-length practice exams, instant feedback, and unlimited access.


PrepScholar aims to offer SAT practice material, which is tailored specifically to each student’s needs.  Their SAT prep is excellent for students who need more in-person instruction though students are still offered an abundance of online content.  Students even have the option for one on one sessions or small group classes. They also provide a 160-point increase guarantee on your SAT, or your prep course is free.  This option is not free, and like The Princeton Review, it can be a bit pricey.


Magoosh is another A1 option if you are looking for SAT test prep.  They offer courses that are perfect for individuals not looking for traditional test prep.  Their course is excellent for busy students or individuals who study better by themselves.  With this program, students are presented with more than 100 video lessons and an arsenal of practice questions. Students also receive a seven-day money-back guarantee as well as a 100-point improvement guarantee.

Self-Study Review Books

If you’re an independent student or on a budget, get yourself a self-study review book instead. We detail the best SAT review books here.

Wrapping Things Up: Princeton Review SAT Prep

Overall the Princeton Review is an excellent option for students who need more focused practice and instructors to review for the SAT.  There are several options out there for you to choose from. However, the Princeton Review is not a leader for no reason.  They continue to transform the way students take and approach standardized tests every day.

The Princeton Review SAT Prep Course is by no means for everyone; however, it is for the student who is looking for a way to boost their score to get into a school like Harvard or Yale.   It is also perfect for students looking to ensure they get the score they desire who may or may not be the best test-takers.

The reviews for the SAT Prep Course are always glowing, and many parents are ultimately happy that they made the financial investment.  However, if you or your family aren’t prepared to make that investment, it’s okay. There are several other options available to you, some of which are even free.

Regardless of the resource, you end up choosing, make sure you stay focused and do well on your SAT.

If you enjoyed this post, you may want to also check out our review on the Princeton Review’s ACT course, or our review of Magoosh’s SAT prep course here.

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Professor Conquer

Professor Conquer started Conquer Your Exam in 2018 to help students feel more confident and better prepared for their tough tests. Prof excelled in high school, graduating top of his class and receiving admissions into several Ivy League and top 15 schools. He has helped many students through the years tutoring and mentoring K-12, consulting seniors through the college admissions process, and writing extensive how-to guides for school.

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