ISEE test prep

Our ISEE tutors are dedicated to helping your student improve.

How does ISEE tutoring work?

Session Structure

We meet with students for eight, nine, or ten 60-minute sessions. For homework, we assign a mix of 45-minute assignments and full-length practice tests.

Course Content

We cover test-taking skills and ISEE content, including question interpretation, guessing strategy, time management, and fundamental reading and math concepts.

Materials

Our ISEE materials reflect the current content and best strategies on the test. Your student will benefit from materials that focus on the most important content and effective testing strategies.

 
 
 

About the ISEE

(Independent School Entrance Exam)

The ISEE is an admissions test for private middle schools and private high schools.

The ISEE has three levels:

  1. Lower Level: for students in fifth grade and below applying to private middle schools (2 hours and 20 minutes)
  2. Middle Level: for students in sixth or seventh grade applying to private middle schools (2 hours and 40 minutes)
  3. Upper Level: for students in eighth grade or above applying to private high schools (2 hours and 40 minutes).
    All students applying for ninth grade and above will take the Upper Level.

The content of the tests includes synonyms, sentence completions, reading comprehension, and math. There is an essay section that is not scored but sent to the prospective school as a sample of the student’s writing.

Talk to an expert about ISEE prep!

We help you help your student.

Knowing how best to support your student is difficult. We have years of experience with your local school, spend countless hours training gifted instructors, and make communication with you a priority.

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Local schools that require or accept the ISEE:

  • Castilleja School (Palo Alto)
  • Menlo (Atherton)
  • Woodside Priory (Portola Valley)
  • Pinewood (Los Altos)
  • Harker (San Jose)
  • Kehillah Jewish High School (Palo Alto)
  • Drew (San Francisco)
  • The Nueva School
  • Lick-Wilmerding (San Franciso)
  • Branson (Marin Co.)
  • Belmont Oaks (Belmont)
  • Marin Academy (San Rafael)
Talk to a director about our ISEE program

Students love AJ Tutoring.

 AJ Tutoring is the most efficient and effective way to learn. What helped me the most was having a patient and friendly tutor. I loved how my tutor would always go step-by-step with me or demonstrate something on the whiteboard until I got it. I improved dramatically–now I’m a pro!  Read what others are saying

Frequently asked questions about the ISEE (FAQs)

How do I register for the ISEE?

You can register for the ISEE on the ERB Website

What is a good score on the ISEE?

Stanines 7-8 are considered “above average,” stanines 4-6 are considered “average,” and stanines 1-3 are considered “below average.”

It is important to remember that the ISEE norm group is a highly competitive group! Your student is being compared to all the other students in the same grade who are taking this test for admission into independent schools, some of which can be the most selective schools in the country.

It’s difficult to say what schools consider a “good” score, as there are many factors in admissions, especially grades and family connections.

Does AJ Tutoring's ISEE prep focus on both content and testing strategies?

Yes. The ISEE is designed to evaluate students on their understanding of information that they learn in school, but it is still a standardized test.  Our ISEE tutoring helps students review content such as fundamental math concepts, reading strategies, and grammar while at the same time coaching students on timing tactics, elimination tricks, and other test-taking skills.

Who produces the ISEE and where can I find more information about the test?

The ISEE is produced by the Educational Record Bureau (ERB). The Educational Records Bureau (ERB), the producer of the ISEE, offers a free downloadable guide entitled What to Expect on the ISEE for each level of the exam it administers. If you want to dive into the thick of concepts tested, we strongly recommend downloading the guide.

Test-maker ERB’s website

How do I interpret my ISEE scores?

Each section will receive a raw score, scaled score, percentile rank, and a stanine. Many schools look primarily at the stanine.

Stanine Chart

Percentile Stanine
1-3 1
4-10 2
11-22 3
23-39 4
40-59 5
60-76 6
77-88 7
89-95 8
96-99 9

What is the format of the ISEE exam?

Timetable and Analysis of the ISEE

(LL=Lower Level, UL=Upper Level)

Section and Content Minutes Allotted Number of Questions
  • Verbal Reasoning
20  LL: 34

UL: 40

Synonyms (UL and LL)
Sentence Completions (UL)
  • Quantitative Reasoning
35 LL: 38

UL: 37

Understanding and application of concepts measured by Problem Solving and Quantitative Comparisons portions
  • Reading Comprehension
LL: 25

UL: 35 

LL: 25

UL: 36

 Six 300-word passages and questions
  • Mathematics Achievement

Concepts in arithmetic

UL includes algebra, geometry

LL: 30

UL: 40 

LL: 30

UL: 47

Essay

Five-paragraph essay prompt

30 minutes

Meet some of our ISEE tutors.

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Naomi Branz

“I customize my sessions with students as I discover their varied strengths and needs.”

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Merylynn Valencia

“I realized how important it was to have support and to provide that to students.”

 

Todd Lavine

“I challenge my students to be engaged and deep thinkers.”

Let's discuss your student's needs.

We’ll help you navigate the test taking maze, share our experience with your local school, and inspire your student.

Talk to a Director
Peninsula Main Phone Number (650) 331-3251
Free Consultation