College Admission Testing: What You Need to Know

Presented by Compass Education Group

For 30 years, college admission professionals have relied on Compass for essential and insightful information about standardized testing. Our leadership is invited to provide keynote addresses at 200 schools and conferences across the USA annually. We even provide training for the admission teams at leading universities, such as Caltech, Rochester, and USC.

To support those not able to attend an in-person event, we are pleased to now offer this information in webinars open to everyone. 

Upcoming Webinars

Tuesday, September 17th, 10a.m. Pacific | 1p.m. Eastern — Adam Ingersoll (make-up for canceled event on 9/10)

Note that the first 45 minutes of the webinar will be “Testing 101” for families new to the process and for counselors needing a refresher. The final 30 minutes will shift to higher-level topics focused on testing’s most contentious and confusing issues. Attendees are welcome to join only for the portion/s they feel will be most appropriate.


Wednesday, October 2nd, 3p.m. Pacific | 6p.m. Eastern — Jon Lee

(30-minute PSAT focused webinar: what to expect and what to do after)


Tuesday, October 22nd, 4p.m. Pacific | 7p.m. Eastern — Sue McLaughlin


Tuesday, November 19th, 5p.m. Pacific | 8p.m. Eastern — Matt Steiner

(30-minute accommodations focused webinar)


Wednesday, November 20th, 10a.m. Pacific | 1p.m. Eastern — Matt Steiner

(30-minute accommodations focused webinar)


Topics that will be examined include:

  • The role and weight of tests in college admission
  • Why colleges’ testing policies vary so widely
  • Harm caused by myths about testing and admission
  • Importance of choosing correctly between SAT and ACT
  • Relevance of Subject Tests at highly-competitive colleges
  • Developmentally appropriate timelines for testing
If none of these times fit into your schedule, please give us an idea of what would work better for you and we’ll keep that in mind for future webinars.

Praise for Our Presentations

We only receive positive feedback from families who have prepared with Compass. In a service industry that often feels 'transactional,' Compass makes a student's well-being and his or her specific needs the focal point.

Tamar Adegbile, Director of College Counseling, Cate School

When we refer families to Compass, we know that we are connecting them to professionals who can manage the entirety of the admission testing process. Students often say how much they love their tutors and how much their scores have improved.

Molly Branch, Co-Director of College Counseling, Windward School

I receive nothing but positive feedback following Compass' presentations. They have a natural way of putting families at ease, which is so important given the angst around standardized testing and college admissions. I highly recommend Compass to my colleagues and invite them back to our campus every year!

Lisa Neumaier, College & Career Specialist, Sir Francis Drake High School

From Compass’ webinars for college counselors, to The Guide to College Admission Testing, to Matt Steiner’s engaging presentation to our 10th grade families, we have been thoroughly impressed by Compass’ comprehensive resources, their data-driven knowledge of testing, and their sensible approach to taking these tests. We look forward to continuing to partner with Compass.

Tracy Matthews and Naté Hall, Friends Select School, Philadelphia, PA

We are delighted to partner with Compass, as so many of our colleagues have done. The education and training Compass provides to our school and to the counselor community is invaluable. Their excellent research de-stresses rather than raise alarms.

Katy Murphy, Director of College Counseling, Bellarmine College Prep; Past-President of NACAC

Our families gravitate toward Compass because its tutors and staff honor each student, appreciating his or her unique strengths and weaknesses. Compass is the gold standard within the industry of test preparation.

Jennifer Simpson, Director of College Counseling, Campbell Hall

Compass' ability to marry clarity and depth of knowledge is a significant asset to the Urban School. Each time Compass presents, I walk away reassured that our students and parents are getting honest, well-researched information about college admission testing. This assurance is confirmed by the waves of appreciative emails I receive from families.

Lauren Gersick, Associate Director of College Counseling, the Urban School of San Francisco

Compass’ presentation was, by far, the best one we have ever had on admission testing. The content was spot on and the delivery was wonderful: clear, articulate, warm, and reassuring. Our parents were extremely complimentary and said they felt much better.

Gail Devine, College Counselor, Louisville High School

I appreciate the research and development that Compass shares regarding college admission tests. In their presentations, Compass illuminates what these tests DO and DON'T measure, which enables our students to separate their test scores from their identities. The tone of these events is overwhelmingly positive and optimistic.

Jeff Morrow, Director of College Counseling, Oaks Christian School

With all of the anxiety around college admissions testing and the redesigned SAT, Compass' presentation could not have been more timely and relevant for our students and parents. They have great skill at explaining the complex nuances of testing, while still making it clear enough for everyone to understand.

David Rion, Director of College Guidance, Loomis Chaffee School

Compass presenters manage to take a calm and light-hearted approach while also being professional in their delivery. Their talks strike the perfect balance - reducing anxiety while providing families with solid guidance regarding admission tests. Also, their materials, including the College Admission Testing Guide, are thoughtfully compiled by professionals I trust.

Steffany Perez, Co-Director of College Counseling, Oakwood School

Compass has been an invaluable resource for our families. Their staff is outstanding and have provided our students and parents with exceptional presentations to help demystify testing. In addition, the wealth of information and testing support they have provided to our families have been instrumental in helping our students achieve their best scores. We greatly value the collaborative effort provided by Compass to best support our students.

Clara Bird, Director of College Counseling, Providence High School

Each year we invite Compass to present to our 10th grade families about college admission testing. These events help our families feel confident, relieved, and well-informed. I am inundated by offers from test prep companies, but I always find myself coming back to Compass.

Canh Oxelson, Director of College Counseling, Horace Mann School; formerly Director of Recruitment, UPenn

Compass' seminar has been a tremendous benefit to my 10th graders and their parents each year for the last decade. The Compass leadership is in a class of its own; they are the foremost experts in the field with the highest ethical standards.

James Skrumbis, Head of School, Sierra Canyon School

Compass is an invaluable resource for us. Their approach to testing is smart and reasonable. Their sophomore parent testing evenings are of the highest quality – useful, comprehensive, well-researched, and delivered with compelling and fresh insight.

Laura Hotchkiss, Director of Upper School, Marlborough School

I only trust Compass to speak to the sophisticated audience at my school about college admissions testing and preparation. I love seeing the looks on their faces when they hear what Compass has to say in their informed, straight-talking, helpful presentations. Students feel much more at ease and families walk away with real insight into testing.

Krista Klein, Co-Director of College Counseling, Lick-Wilmerding High School

A Sampling of the 200+ Schools that Invite Compass to Present Annually

Battle Ground Academy, Nashville

Bellarmine College Prep, San Jose

Casady, Oklahoma City

Collegiate, Louisville

Collegiate, Richmond

Colorado Academy, Denver

Durham Academy

Friends Select, Philadelphia

Harvard-Westlake, Los Angeles

Head-Royce, Oakland

Hockaday, Dallas

Horace Mann, New York City

Hun School, Princeton

Isidore Newman, New Orleans

Kinkaid, Houston

Lakeside, Seattle

Memphis University School

New Trier, Chicago

Oregon Episcopal School, Portland

Ransom-Everglades, Miami

Shanghai American School

Sidwell Friends, DC

St. John’s, Puerto Rico

University High School, San Francisco

The Compass Guide to College Admission Testing

To complement the webinar, download a copy of The Compass Guide to College Admission Testing. This essential resource for families and counselors contains more than 80 pages of unbiased information on the ACT, SAT, PSAT, Subject Tests, and more. The print edition has reached over 100,000 families and is used by counseling offices at many of the top schools in the U.S. The Guide is also available as a free PDF or iBook download via the link below. Sharon Cuseo of Harvard-Westlake School says “I wish every family in the country received this terrific resource.

Meet Our Expert Presenters