We guide students into the private high schools of their choice.

What is the ISEE?

The ISEE is the Independent School Entrance Examination, and it’s used for admission to private middle schools and high schools. If you’re looking to attend an elite private middle or high school, this is a test you’ll need to take.

Taking the ISEE
ISEE Exam Prep

What’s on it, and why are there different levels?

Because the ISEE helps test students for admission to private middle and high schools, different levels of the test are offered depending on where you are in your education. The Upper Level is designed for applicants in 9th grade and above. The Middle Level is for applicants in 7th and 8th grade, and the Lower Level is for applicants in 5th and 6th grade. No matter which level of the test you’ll be taking, the ISEE will always test the same sections—Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, Reading Comprehension and Mathematics Achievement—but there are certain differences within the sections depending on the level of the test. The test also contains an unscored essay that is sent to the schools you’re applying to.

When can I take it, and how do I sign up?

The ISEE Exam is given several times throughout the year, but the majority of the testing dates fall during the fall and early winter. The number of available test dates will depend on your location, and you can take the ISEE only once in a six month period.

What’s the difference between the SSAT® and the ISEE? Both the ISEE and the SSAT are used for admission to private middle and high schools and test Vocabulary, Math and Reading Comprehension. Many schools will accept either test for admission, which gives you the option of choosing the test that better suits you and your abilities. The major difference between the tests is in how they test your abilities in each section of the exam.

The ISEE uses synonyms and sentence completion to test vocabulary, while the SSAT uses synonyms and analogies. The reading passages on the ISEE tend to be longer than those on the SSAT, but the SSAT includes a broader range of genres, including poetry. The ISEE also places a heavier emphasis on mathematical reasoning than the SSAT does. If the schools you’re applying to will take either test, choose the one that’s better suited to your abilities.

What is the HSPT?

For over fifty years, academic high schools nationwide have used STS’ High School Placement Test (HSPT) to assist with admissions, scholarship selection, and curriculum placement. The HSPT is a comprehensive placement test for eighth graders for placement in the ninth grade.

How Schools Use Your Scores

For over fifty years, high schools nationwide have used STS’ High School Placement Test (HSPT®) to assist with admissions, scholarship selection, and curriculum placement.

Each school evaluates your scores in its own way. Criteria determined by one school to assist with academic decisions may not be the same for another school.

Preparing for the HSPT

Testing can be a rather anxious, but also, exciting experience for students and their parents. We receive many questions from parents inquiring on how their child can prepare for the HSPT®. Cornerstone Prep LLC offers the following tips to best prepare for a successful testing experience:

Cornerstone Prep LLC offers the student Mastery of the test

while teaching the student not to panic or be anxious over the test. Students will feel comfortable and relaxed. Listen to and read the directions for each subtest carefully.

Pace yourself taking the ISEE / HSPT Exam.

Time limits are set for each subtest. The test administrators should announce when time is halfway through so you can determine if you are working at a pace that will enable you to finish. Try not to spend too much time on one item.

Read each question carefully on the HSPT Exam.

Work out the problem.

Calculators are not permitted for the Mathematics subtest. You may use scratch paper or your test booklet to do any figuring.

Answer every question.

If you are unsure of an answer, take your best guess. Your score is determined by the number of items you answer correctly; there is no penalty for answering incorrectly.

Check your work.

If there is time left, go back and review your answers. Check to make sure each item has only one response. Throughout the test, continuously check that the answer you are marking on your answer sheet corresponds to the item number in the test booklet.

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