top of page

ISEE Prep: The Basics

What is the ISEE? 

The ISEE is the Independent School Entrance Exam. Like the SSAT, it is a standardized test used by private schools to assess their applicants' math and language skills. 

When do most students take the ISEE? 

Most students take the test in November, typically the week before Thanksgiving. This schedule allows students to have their scores back in time to apply for the following school year. 

Why is ISEE preparation so helpful? 

Like any standardized test, the ISEE can be tricky for students who have not practiced with the test's timing, structure, and question forms. Even if a student's grasp on language and math content is very strong, it is still helpful to give the student time to practice with test strategies unique to this particular test. 


For one example of the importance of test prep, the following is a set of instructions for one portion of a math section. This form of a question can be very confusing to students, regardless of their math skills, right?! But with practice, students can quickly improve!

QR math example.PNG

How much test prep is necessary? 

The answer to this question depends on the student's goals and current skills. We typically recommend leaving around eight weeks to prepare for the test but many families choose more or less time. Even 4-5 hours of practice can really pay off! 

What options are there for test prep? 

We have small groups that begin in September of every year. We also have several experienced ISEE tutors to provide individual or paired support. Our space is limited, although we will always try to help as many students as we can. 

More questions?

Email Tara anytime at


bottom of page