We know that there are a lot of options out there for SSAT prep materials and sometimes it can seem overwhelming. We periodically review the best prep material options to make it easier for you to choose. The best materials are those that offer SSAT official practice tests. The official materials offer students the closest approximation to what they can expect to see on their test. To that end, our top recommendations of third-party SSAT prep materials are those of Test Innovators (TI) and the Official SSAT Test materials.
Test Innovators offers the most robust platform for SSAT preparation. When combined with an Inspirica tutor, TI is the best option for students preparing for the SSAT. TI offers access to a mix of practice tests including both official tests and their own versions. Test Innovators has a partnership with EMA, the company that puts on the SSAT test, allowing students access to the official tests. TI also offers hundreds of exercises and questions to help students improve skills in between the practice tests. What makes TI’s platform so unique? They provide excellent analytic data that will help any student focus on their weaknesses as they complete practice tests. It tracks student timing and accuracy for each question. In addition to the important official tests, TI also offers programs for each of the levels of the SSAT: Lower, Middle and Upper. This is important because the content varies slightly with each difficulty and it allows students to focus on what they need at the appropriate level. The TI platform is also intuitive with an easy to use interface.
The Official SSAT is available in both books and an online platform. Similar to TI, the official SSAT prep materials also provide useful data: tracking your score, question timing and skill progress in each test section and subsection. The Official SSAT material also offers section tests and full-length tests. The Official SSAT Guide Books are geared not just for students, but for parents as well. It offers less questions, but the same amount of full-length practice tests (4). Keep in mind that each level of the test is sold separately, which, depending on your needs, could be a benefit as it just focuses on that level. For those looking to take the Lower Levels of the test, the 3rd and 4th Grade guide books are offered for free here.
Kaplan SSAT & ISEE 2019-2020
McGraw Hill SSAT/ISEE 5th Edition
Princeton Review SSAT & ISEE 2020
Ivy Global SSAT Prep Books
All of the books listed above can be found on Amazon and each some weakness relative to TI and the Official SSAT materials. Kaplan, Princeton Review and McGraw Hill all combine their SSAT review material with ISEE prep material. This is generally unnecessary information if you are just taking the SSAT. Additionally, unlike both TI and Official SSAT, multiple levels (both Upper and Middle) are combined in one book. Each offers an overview of the test, strategies, at least one full practice test and some exercises. Ivy Global has a detailed set of guide books, but the price is generally more than their competitors. However, unlike Kaplan, Princeton Review and McGraw Hill, Ivy Global has books that are geared solely for the SSAT. They also offer a free practice test for each level that students can take advantage of and can be found here.
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While these materials are all useful, they are best when paired with a tutor! To learn more about how we can help you prep for the SSAT, schedule a free consultation with one of our Program Coordinators today!