ACT & SAT Prep and College Admissions Blog

Mark Skoskiewicz

Mark Skoskiewicz holds a B.S. in Business Administration with a Major in Finance from the Indiana University Kelley School of Business, (he received additional minors in Philosophy and History). At IU, Mark was an undergraduate economics instructor teaching supplemental small group sessions for the department’s introductory economics course. During his junior and senior years, he was a private economics, finance, and accounting tutor. After Indiana, Mark spent 8 years working for Marakon Associates before creating MyGuru in 2009 while earning his MBA at Northwestern Kellogg to make it easier for parents and students to find high quality yet affordable tutors. While Mark wants MyGuru to always be known as a source for excellent tutors, we also aim to be a thought leader on how to improve academic performance through shifts in mindset, well-defined study plans, improved study habits, and even stress reduction strategies. Mark believes these ideas are a powerful, critical complement to working with an expert private tutor. Mark currently shares insights, advice, and information about how to improve academic performance in MyGuru’s improving academic performance blog and in an eBook Plan, Prepare, Perform: A Personalized Approach to Test Preparation.

Recent Posts

How to Hire the Best ACT or SAT Tutor for You

Posted by Mark Skoskiewicz on Wed, Dec 29, 2021 @ 12:46 PM

Preparing for the ACT or SAT can seem daunting, but remember, these exams are your chance to improve the likelihood of admission to your dream college. In fact, if your GPA isn’t as high as it could be, this could be the chance you have at giving yourself an edge in the admissions process. While many colleges are going test optional, a strong ACT score can only help you show off your academic prowess and readiness to thrive in at the university level. Though the ACT can be challenging, and perhaps you’ve scored less-than-ideally on a practice test, utilizing an ACT tutor can noticeably improve your score. An in-person or online ACT tutor can really kick-start your ACT prep process, providing you with the ACT study plan you need to be effective and efficient when you self-study for the ACT. After all, for every hour you spend with an ACT or SAT tutor, you should spend three hours self-studying.

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Topics: sat tutoring, ACT concepts, SAT test, ACT/SAT study skills

Should You Hire an SAT Tutor?

Posted by Mark Skoskiewicz on Wed, Dec 22, 2021 @ 09:00 AM

A recent celebrity college admission scandal saw actresses Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman being charged with bribery and fraud, accused of going to devious and illegal measures to ensure their kids were admitted to colleges that they might not otherwise have been accepted to. The scandal illuminated the lengths to which some students and parents will go to ensure attendance at their school of choice. While most of us won’t break the law, there are certainly increased measures one can take to broaden their chances for university admissions. Scoring particularly well on the SAT is one obvious tactic. Some students chase this goal via significant self-study; others pay for private SAT tutors and SAT prep courses.

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Topics: sat tutoring, tips for studying for the SATs, ACT/SAT study skills, SAT self-study

How to Improve your SAT Score (or ACT Score) Through Deliberate Practice

Posted by Mark Skoskiewicz on Tue, May 18, 2021 @ 10:00 AM

If you really want to get a high SAT score, perhaps the most important thing to keep in mind is that “talent” or “IQ” matters far less than you think. There are not really “math people” or “natural readers.” What matters is the amount and quality of your SAT prep, which of course is influenced in large part by how passionate and genuinely interested you are in doing well on the SAT or ACT. So if you want to get a 99th percentile SAT score or a 34 on the ACT, it’s possible that you can do it.

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Topics: sat tutors, College Admissions, ACT/SAT study skills, college tips, college entrance, college timeline, ACT prep, sat prep, college

The Best Way to Prepare for the ACT or SAT Might Surprise - and Calm - You

Posted by Mark Skoskiewicz on Fri, May 07, 2021 @ 02:33 PM

What is the best way to prepare for the ACT or SAT?

Well, it’s true arriving at a useful answer to this question does depend a lot on your timing and the context. If you are a junior with average grades, but aspire to get a high SAT score, and you take the SAT in 30 days, this article should be able to help adopt the right mindset and bring some calm and confidence to exam day. But practically, with only 30 days until the exam, you should be considering online SAT tutoring or an SAT crash course to get the best SAT score you possibly can. SAT tutoring and courses can and will help you get a higher score.

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Topics: sat tutors, College Admissions, ACT/SAT study skills, college tips, college entrance, college timeline, ACT prep, sat prep, college

SAT Math Mastery

Posted by Mark Skoskiewicz on Tue, Dec 15, 2020 @ 10:41 AM

SAT Math Mastery: The Origin Story of an SAT Math Textbook

This is a guest post by Christian Heath, author of SAT Math Mastery Volume 1 and Volume 2. Chris has been teaching SAT and ACT prep to high school students for 10 years and has perfect scores on both tests.

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Topics: sat tutors, College Admissions, ACT/SAT study skills, sat help, SAT math, sat prep, sat online

2 Key Questions You Should Ask When Searching For a College

Posted by Mark Skoskiewicz on Fri, Oct 30, 2020 @ 05:14 PM

COVID-19 has changed every aspect of our world. From the increased time at home for everyone to students learning from home via Zoom, it has been a year of transition and change, particularly for high school and college students. Many colleges, for example, have waived ACT and SAT requirements completely during the admissions process, likely opening up new possibilities for tens of thousands of students. But hopefully, the COVID-era won’t last forever. By the time students applying to college in the next few months actually head to school, Coronavirus may be in the rearview mirror.

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Topics: College Admissions

The Art of Being Productive in High School to be a More Attractive College Applicant (Part 2)

Posted by Mark Skoskiewicz on Tue, Sep 18, 2018 @ 09:45 AM

In our last blog post on this topic, we explored why today’s high school students must be so productive in high school. Getting good grades isn’t quite enough anymore. You need to show a variety of interests and ideally achieve leadership positions outside the classroom to maximize your chances of admission to a top college. We offered a six-step process to being more productive in high school:

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Topics: study skills, college education, college tips, undergraduate student common questions, college freshman advice, college questions, college advice, college student

The Art of Being Productive in High School to be a More Attractive College Applicant (Part 1)

Posted by Mark Skoskiewicz on Tue, Sep 11, 2018 @ 09:00 AM

Most students know they need to be productive, because getting into an excellent college requires much more than good grades nowadays. It now requires a well written application highlighting many interests and accomplishments, including a high GPA.

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Topics: study skills, college education, college tips, undergraduate student common questions, college freshman advice, college questions, college advice, college student

Designing an ACT Study Plan? Here are our Recommended ACT Study Materials

Posted by Mark Skoskiewicz on Thu, Dec 29, 2016 @ 02:54 PM


When designing an ACT study plan, one key question is “what materials will I use?” Luckily, the most effective material is also the most inexpensive (more on that later).

To begin, it’s helpful to ask yourself one basic question: am I fundamentally comfortable using online materials or not? There are many web-sites and “apps” available to help you prepare for the ACT. But for some people, plain old paper and pencil is still their preferred way to learn. I tend to encourage students to at least consider an online approach, since it’s generally very convenient and because many online resources are “adaptive,” meaning they give you suggested practice content based on how you’ve performed on previous practice problems to build on your strengths and address your weaknesses. But, if an online approach just isn’t for you, don’t force it.

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Topics: ACT study plan, ACT, ACT overview, ACT concepts, ACT tutoring

College Essay Writing Tips

Posted by Mark Skoskiewicz on Fri, Aug 12, 2016 @ 12:00 PM

Perhaps the most intimidating part of the College Admissions process is composing your personal statement. But, it doesn’t have to be that way, here are some tips to help you out.

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Topics: college tips