The Best ISEE Tutoring

What sets our ISEE prep apart from everyone else’s?

isee tutoring

Completely risk free. Try out an ISEE tutoring session online or in-person, and, if it does not meet or exceed your expectations, then that first session is free.

Average score increase of 210 points on the SAT, even when a student worked with a different company before coming to tutor with us.
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Curriculum is 100% sourced from the real tests (by far the best quality content available) and customized for each student.

The best test prep experts: each applicant goes through a rigorous interviewing process (applicants sourced nationally, not just from NJ), and each new hire goes through a minimum of 160 hours of specialized training specifically on the ISEE before they meet with their first student.

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We do the best ISEE tutoring because we retain the best tutors: our ISEE tutors are full-time and on salary with health, dental, vision, long and short-term disability, life insurance, and retirement benefits. They are career, not side hustle, test experts.

We are experts at both in-person and online tutoring.

over 99% five-star reviews

See what our students have to say

Molly and Neve talk about their experience at Summit Prep:

Margie B.
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I can’t thank david for all his hard work and getting my son the score he was aiming for!! Summit prep is an unbelievable place to get your kids ready for their college prep Act and SAT courses!!! Thanks again for making this year end with a bang!!
Thomas S.
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The entire experience from start to finish was excellent. The process was clearly outlined and understood. Scheduling was a breeze and our teacher come not have been more flexible.
Georgia B.
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Eva was wonderful. With her help I was able to get into my top school and receive and scholarship. I loved her help and spending time studying.
Jeanine L.
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We were lucky enough to be referred to David at Summit Prep! My son enjoyed working with David as he felt that he really helped him prepare for the ACT. He explained concepts covered on the test as well as the test itself. My son felt confident taking the test and did so well that he only had to take it once!
Ben H.
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David helped me improve my SAT from a 1480 to a 1570 over the course of about 2 months. Each session made me feel more and more confident.
Jill B.
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Eva took on an almost impossible task and seriously worked a miracle! We found out we were moving, and our son had to take the ISEE exam asap. From his practice test to the exam, his scores went up exponentially. We give her 5 enthusiastic stars!
Rachel F.
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My twins have had a wonderful experience with Summit Prep preparing for the ACT. David is extremely knowledgeable and connects individually in a very relatable and helpful manner for each student. I highly recommend Summit Prep!
Janice B.
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All three of my children have used Summit Prep for their test prep and, I believe, reached their full potential as a result of the outstanding guidance of David and Ryan. His ongoing support went above and beyond. Many thanks!
Kwesi A.
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My son just got accepted into MIddlebury!! He could not have gotten a better tutor than Eva!!! She is the best!
Arlene S.
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Summit Prep are professional, enthusiastic, encouraging and most importantly successful in helping our son achieve his goals. We would strongly recommend using David and his team and want to convey our thanks for all of their help!

Frequently Asked Questions


If a student is applying to a private school, there is a good chance that the school will require students to submit standardized test results. The two most frequently accepted tests are the ISEE and SSAT. Students should check with the schools to which they are applying which tests the schools accept or require. If the school accepts both the ISEE and SSAT, then students should take a practice test of each to determine which test fits them best.

To determine which test to take, students should take a diagnostic of both to see which one fits them best.

Note: Because the ISEE can only be taken once in any given testing season (Fall: August t0 November. Winter: December to March. Spring: April to July), students are likely to only have one try on the ISEE when they are fully prepared for it. There is variability in any test date: Students could have a good or bad day, the content tested on that test date might fit them particularly well or not, etc. Given that variability, there’s higher risk inherent with going with the ISEE. For that reason, if a student scores significantly higher on the ISEE, they should prepare for the ISEE. If they only score slightly higher on the ISEE diagnostic, then it’s still safer for them to prepare for the SSAT, because they can easily take the SSAT multiple times. And, if a student does prepare for the ISEE, they still might want to register for and take an SSAT as a back-up, just in case they get unlucky on the ISEE test day and the test does not go as planned.

Students cannot use a calculator on any portion of this exam (unless they have special accommodations that require them to be able to do so).

ISEE Format

Primary Level Exam Formats

Students in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade take the Primary Level 1, 2, and 3 exams for entrance into the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grades.

Note: Students applying only to schools located in New York City do not participate in the essay section because New York City schools do not require this portion of the exam.

For students in 1st grade applying to 2nd grade.

SectionNumber of QuestionsTime
Auditory Comprehension67 minutes
Reading1820 minutes
Break05-10 minutes
Mathematics2426 minutes
Writing Sample1 picture promptNo time limit
Total4953 minutes + break + essay

For students in 2nd grade applying to 3rd grade.

SectionNumber of QuestionsTime
Reading2428 minutes
Break05-10 minutes
Mathematics2426 minutes
Writing Sample1 picture promptNo time limit
Total4954 minutes + break + essay

For students in 3rd grade applying to 4th grade

SectionNumber of QuestionsTime
Reading2830 minutes
Break05-10 minutes
Mathematics2830 minutes
Writing Sample1 promptNo time limit
Total5760 minutes + break + essay

Lower Level Exam Format

Students in 4th and 5th grade for entrance into 5th and 6th grade, respectively.
SectionNumber of QuestionsTime
Verbal Reasoning3420 minutes
Quantitative Reasoning3835 minutes
Break05-10 minutes
Reading Comprehension2525 minutes
Mathematics Achievement3030 minutes
Break05-10 minutes
Essay1 prompt30 minutes
Total1282 hr and 20 min + two breaks

Middle Level Exam Format

Students in 6th and 7th grade for entrance into 7th and 8th grade, respectively.

SectionNumber of QuestionsTime
Verbal Reasoning4020 minutes
Quantitative Reasoning3735 minutes
Break05-10 minutes
Reading Comprehension3635 minutes
Mathematics Achievement4740 minutes
Break05-10 minutes
Essay1 prompt30 minutes
Total1612 hr and 40 min + two breaks

Upper Level Exam Format

Students in 8th, 9th, and 10th grade for entrance into 9th, 10th, and 11th grade, respectively.

SectionNumber of QuestionsTime
Verbal Reasoning4020 minutes
Quantitative Reasoning3735 minutes
Break05-10 minutes
Reading Comprehension3635 minutes
Mathematics Achievement4740 minutes
Break05-10 minutes
Essay1 prompt30 minutes
Total1612 hr and 40 min + two breaks

Information about the ISEE

The ISEE stands for Independent School Entrance Exam. The ISEE was developed by the Educational Records Bureau (ERB) for its member schools as part of their admission process. Like other standardized tests, the purpose of the ISEE is to establish a standard method of measurement for the skills that have been acquired by school applicants.

Founded in 1927, the ERB’s mission is to create testing and learning solutions that help schools develop improved curriculum, teaching, and learning through diagnosis of assessment results that address essential learning standards. The ISEE has four levels:

ISEE Scoring

  • Every question correct adds a point to a student’s raw score (so all questions, from the easiest to the hardest, are worth the same for a student’s score). This raw score is then converted to a scaled score.
  • The scaled score is adjusted based on the student’s grade level, so only the scores of students in the same grade can be compared. 
  • For example, the Upper Level exam is the same for all students who take the test (those in 8th to 11th grades), but if an 8th and 11th grader received the same raw score — the same number of questions correct — then the scaled score for the 8th grader would be much higher. 
  • So, particularly for an 8th grader, if they see content on a section that they have never learned yet, they should not be concerned; that content is likely intended to test students from higher grade levels, and the makers of the test are expecting most students from the lower grades to get those questions incorrect.
  • There is no guessing penalty, so students should put an answer for every question.
  • The essay is not scored by the ISEE; it is included in a student’s score report that is sent to the schools to which a student is applying so that admission officers can get a sample of the student’s writing.

After Acceptance to High School

Once you start high school (or before), we are here to support you if you need help in any academic subjects and/or if you are struggling to stay motivated and succeed. And, when you need it, we specialize in SAT and ACT prep and provide one-on-one, customized tutoring to over 1,000 students every year for these college entrance exams.

Timeline for SAT/ACT Testing and College Admissions

Fall of sophomore year:

Students take the PSAT in October and get results back in early December. These results do not count toward National Merit status, and we recommend that students do not prep for it (here’s more info one why we make that recommendation). But, the results do give us an early indication of where a student’s standardized test score is at, which can inform if we need to start SAT/ACT prep earlier than anticipated.

Summer after sophomore year:

In June, take our free diagnostic SAT and ACT exams to determine which test suits your child best and then start SAT prep or ACT prep (recruited athletes or those needing very large score increases sometimes need to start the process earlier).

Throughout junior year:

Take the SAT/ACT tests until you hit your score goal (ACT scores, in particular, can be deleted at any time, so there’s no downside to re-taking the test).

October of junior year:

Most students take the PSAT (this score does not matter for the vast majority of students) — the results for this test come back in early December of that year.

Summer after junior year and early fall of senior year:

College visits and applications.

November 1st and 15th of senior year:

Early application deadlines for most colleges.

A few tips for test day

Remember the order of difficulty on the Math sections. You’ll find the hardest questions at the end of the section, which means that the answers are more complex. Look carefully at the choices and really think about what the question is asking. But, because all questions have equal worth, there is no reason to rush through the easier questions to get to the hardest ones, since everyone has a lower probability of getting the hardest questions correct anyway.
Don’t read the directions during the test. You should have read and memorized the directions before sitting down to take the exam. So when the exam clock starts ticking, don’t waste time rereading directions you already know. Instead, go directly to Question 1.
Bring a watch. To pace yourself, you need to keep track of the time – and what if there is no clock in your room or if the only clock is out of your line of vision? So bring a watch just in case. A word of warning: Don’t bring a watch that makes noise (such as one that has an alarm) or a smartwatch — both can get you kicked out of the test.
Keep it moving. If you don’t know an answer, that’s ok. Don’t get stuck. There may be questions later on in the test that you can answer easily, and you don’t want to lose points just because you didn’t get to them. And, if you have time left over, you can go back to the questions you skipped.

From the Summit Prep Blog