Panel of Experts

Karl Schellscheidt

SAT Prep Expert

  • BSE, Princeton University '90
  • M.A., Secondary Education Seton Hall University '93
  • J.D., University of Pennsylvania Law School '00

Fred Hargadon

Dean of Admission

  • Swarthmore College
  • Stanford University
  • Princeton University

Don Betterton

Financial Aid Expert

  • Director of Financial Aid, Princeton University (1973-2006)
  • Certified College Planner
  • Principal, Betterton College Planning

Seamus Malin

Admission Expert

  • Harvard University
    Dir. of Financial Aid
    Asst. Dean of Admission
    International Office Director

Is Wikipedia A Reliable Academic Source?

Seamus Malin -

eprep test prep videoOne of our favorite websites, Inside Higher Ed, reports on the decision of Middlebury’s History Department to ban students from citing Wikipedia in their research.

As educators, we are in the business of reducing the dissemination of misinformation, said Don Wyatt, chair of the department. Even though Wikipedia may have some value, particularly from the value of leading students to citable sources, it is not itself an appropriate source for (more…)

Real SAT Test Stories: My Nightmare Experience

Karl Schellscheidt -

eprep test prep video Diligent preparation for the SAT test material is essential, but don’t underestimate the chances that something will go wrong on SAT test day. In fact, you should almost plan on it. As with everything in life, you cannot control all the variables at work when you walk into that classroom and sit down for the SAT test. However, you can control your reaction to any problems that arise. Join me in this prepcast series on real SAT stories as I relay my SAT test day nightmare. (more…)

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Real SAT Test Stories: Living up to Your Potential

Karl Schellscheidt -

eprep test prep video On game day, athletes often struggle to perform as well as they do in practice. Similarly, students who have prepared well for the SAT or ACT often struggle to maximize their potential on test day. This was the situation in which one of my students found herself during the fall of senior year. So what do you do if you score really high on practice SAT tests but fail to reach the same level on test day when it really counts? Join me in this prepcast as I recount one not-so-unique story. (more…)

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Where’s Fred? / College Letters of Recommendation

Karl Schellscheidt -

college admissions expert advice from Some of you may have noticed a recent lack of posts from Fred Hargadon. You may be wondering, “Where’s Fred?”

Well, I had the same question a couple of weeks ago, so I reached out to Fred to see what was happening. He explained that he was working around the clock writing scores of letters of recommendation for young men and women he had gotten to know well over the years. They were applying to colleges, law schools, business schools, medical schools, etc. You name it; Fred was writing one. And knowing Fred as I do, I can assure you that he is taking the time to do a great job on each letter. (more…)

SAT Also Stands for “Student-Athlete Test”

Karl Schellscheidt -

eprep test prep video
Those student-athletes who have an opportunity to play at the collegiate level should pay close attention to the SAT (and the ACT test, for that matter). First, let me congratulate you for your success in your sport. Next, let me urge you to pay attention to your GPA and test scores. Your abilities in athletics can help your chances toward admission to a great school, but failure to achieve good SAT test scores can become a stumbling block to your future. This podcast focuses on the topic of student-athletes and the SAT. (more…)

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College Freshman as Leading Indicators

Seamus Malin -

college admissions expert advice from eprep.comInside Higher Ed reviews a new study that profiled a staggering 270,000 incoming freshman at 400 colleges. The article notes that first-year students are increasingly politically minded and more polarized in their political views. Financial aid for college was cited as a major concern by freshman. In fact, among those students admitted to their first choice college that ultimately chose not to attend, the top reason cited for enrolling elsewhere was their inability to pay tuition.

The 16 Things You Should Know (or Do) Junior Year in High School - Financial Aid for College

Don Betterton -

college admissions expert advice from eprep.comFinancial Aid for College: Junior Year


1. If you think you will need financial assistance to attend college, you should turn your attention to aid matters no later than midway through junior year.

By junior year, you should have a list of colleges, any one of which you would be happy to attend. Each of the colleges on your list should have characteristics that appear to match your personal preferences and academic abilities. If you have not yet drafted a preliminary college list, you should research colleges and do so before tackling financial aid matters.

2. Once you have organized a college list in accordance with your personal preferences and academic abilities, start collecting financial aid information.

Call or visit the website of each college on your list in order to obtain the school’s estimated total cost of attendance. This figure is commonly referred to as the Cost of Attendance, or COA. The COA includes tuition, room, (more…)

News: Getting into College and College Expectations

Seamus Malin -

eprep test prep video

In the daily news roundup, I thought the following two articles might be of interest:

Inside Higher Ed reports on a new website that shows students “how to apply for financial aid, where to find information on colleges and when to begin soliciting help from teachers. It explains concepts such as sticker price and gives parents advice on how to talk to their students about the application process.”

The second article references a recently published survey, “The 2007 National Freshman Attitudes Report,” which reveals men and women’s expectations of what they will accomplish while in college.

SAT Test Prep in the Shower

Eric Barnes -

eprep test prep video
That’s right…the shower. While we strongly advise “early and often” test prep, the SAT test has been know to transpose normal people to compulsive zealots, and rest assured there’s a company making a product to serve the need. Take for example these SAT test prep shower curtains by The Intuitive Learning Company. Now young students can bathe in privacy and study up for next week’s SAT test. After you’ve mastered Intuitive’s 500 SAT vocabulary list curtain, switch it out for a review of SAT math concepts! This reminds of me of the classic Seinfeld episode where Kramer decides to prepare his food in the shower to save time and ultimately installs a disposal in the shower.

Civil Rights History Quiz

Karl Schellscheidt -

eprep test prep video

As I logged on to my computer this morning, I came across this 12-question civil rights history quiz.

Based on my score, I think I need to reread some of my old history textbooks and law school casebooks. By the way, (1) the quiz itself was a good learning experience and (2) I managed to answer a couple of the questions correctly based on information I gleaned from some of the other questions — a useful strategy for any test.

Incidentally, one of my best friends from childhood, Wan Kim, now heads up the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. Needless to say, I am very proud to be his friend.
You go Wan!

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