My rating of Kaplan: 7.5 / 100
I’d promised everyone that I will complete my review of websites useful for the SAT, and I’m going to keep that promise. So let’s start off with a really good site, Kaplan at www.kaptest.com
Kaplan is one the leading companies in test prep, and the wonderfully designed website is fitting for it. I simply love its design and the purple shade is oh-so-sweet. It’s better designed than the other SAT sites I’ve come across, and offers better navigation too.
What the Kaplan site is good for is its Kaplan SAT QuizBank – a collection of more than 1000 questions on all sections of the SAT Reasoning Test. You can sign up for free, by going to their SAT section. You’ll need to register, and then you’ll get a funny page saying that you need to pay $0 for this transaction (you’ll even get an invoice in your email account saying this). Once done, go to your My Kaplan page, and you’ll find the services you’ve registered for. Now come the irritating part – it doesn’t allow direct access, you need to click a button, which will then load the same page with th link. Sheesh! For a well-designed site, this shouldn’t have happened.
The QuizBank allows you to choose the section of the SAT you want to work on, along with the minimum number of questions you want in test. You can even choose question types within a section. Once done, you can take the timed test. The best thing is that after trying a few sessions of these, you can go on to the analysis section and see where exactly you’re messing up. Use Kaplan’s SAT QuizBank to gets loads of practice, and identify the points you’re weak in.
Kaplan also offers a free online SAT. My review of this is mixed – it has some nice features, yet it lacks a few things. For one, it’s the very same free paper they had in 2005 when the new SAT was launched – they haven’t updated it yet. You can download the paper, attempt it offline, and then enter your answers. Now this is where there’s a flaw (or you could say it was a mistake on my part). The paper itself was good, and then I logged in later to enter my answers. However, instead of the radio button format which most sites take to accept answers, they use a drop down box. I ended up submitting my options one answer off by mistake, which resulted in whole three sections going wrong (except a few answers, which matched by serendipity).
What I liked about their test was that they generate a diagnostic report PDF. Quite handy to analyze the test at your leisure later. It is a mildly irritating at times, because after almost every paragraph it adds ‘join Kaplan’ messages. Otherwise, I found this feature pretty nifty.
Overall, this is a really nice site for SAT prep, with loads of good quality practice questions, if can handle with its slightly quirky authentication mechanism.