Thursday, March 14, 2019

Test Prep

What with all the news about College Admissions scandals involving celebrities the whole "rich folks that don't commit crimes still have a leg up with all the test prep stuff they can afford."


I remember MY test prep.  I took the SATs on 5 or 6 separate occasions.   I think my dad spent $40 on a floppy for the Apple IIe that ran a few practice tests on you.  That and getting familiar with the process and being decent at taking multiple choice test naturally saw my test scores, in the mid 80s go from 550/550 English/math to 580/710 English/math.  This was when the SATs were 1600 total and no essays. 

I thought the test prep helped a bit.  That 30 points in English I improved can be put toward the prep.  The 710 is prep PLUS taking math classes.  Algebra II was under my belt and reinforced with pre-Calculus course by the 710 time. 

The same test prep practice exams were available at the library back then.   For free.  I didn't have to do that stuff at home with the added expense. 

1290 wasn't a shabby score for a kid trying to get into engineering schools.   Kids smarted than me had lower scores. 

But yeah, avail yourself of test prep.  Unless you need a perfect score to get into a presitge school.  Then you better commit the felony bribing.  But don't let their cheating or your poverty make you think you can improve your own bidness with a relative low amount of effort.

Of course, my truths are now 30 years old, and a sample of one.  And a college degree didn't get me much.  I'm glad I went and got it, but I really can't go "I am paid a lot more in my job because of it."  If I had spent that 4 years working in a shop where a senior programmer showed me how to do UNIX as part of the job, AND I hadn't been a naval office and brewmaster the 8 years after that, I'd probably command a $200,000 salary now.  But I wouldn't be 'educated' except for all the book I read.  But book learning isn't official.  No certificate to prove I read that stuff.     

I woulda hated learning UNIX back then, anyway.

Happy Pi Day.

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