Starting a Study Group

To start a successful study group, you’ll need to figure a few things out: who, where, and when.


  1. Find members who will make a great team.

    You want a team that’s big enough to be an effective resource and small enough to answer at least one question per person each time you meet: look for five to eight members. Try to put together a group of students who are strong in different skills, and look for members who plan to take the SAT the same day you do so the timeline works for everyone.

  2. Decide who will run it.

    Your group needs someone to keep things running smoothly. A leader can do things like making sure everyone knows about schedule changes, finding places to meet, and tracking progress toward goals. This role could be played by one person or you could take turns each week.

  3. Pick a space.

    You’ll need a space where you can talk, but where it’s not too noisy. Look for a space with a white board to write on for group problem solving and outlets for laptops. You’ll also need a quiet room you can use when you take full-length SAT practice tests. You could take them on your own time, but taking them as a group makes it more like the real thing, which can pay off on test day. 

    Alternatively, consider meeting online, through videoconferencing software. 

  4. Make a schedule.

    Ask everyone to commit to one or two meetings a week, for 45 to 60 minutes. Choose days and times when you’ll be focused and won’t want to do something else. For example, in the morning before school starts, during your lunch break or free period, or at night at someone's house.