I bought this book for my daughter to prepare for ISEE Upper Level Test. Today she took a practice test and we found some mistakes. I summarized them as follows:
1. Question number mismatches. There are 35 questions in Quantitative Reasoning in real test, however there are 37 questions in practice test. There are 45 questions in Mathematics Achievement in real test, there are 47 questions in practice test.
2. Mathematics Achievement Question 17 (p641): In Mr. Johanessen's class, 1/4 of the students failed the final exam. Of the remaining class, 1/3 scored an A. What fraction of the whole class passed the test but scored below an A? The answer is: 7/12 The correct answer should be: 1/2
3. Quantitattive Reasoning Question 33 (p625): The answer is: B The correct answer should be: C
Question 19 (p623): The answer is: 100 The correct answer should be: 15
Queston 25 (p624): The question is wrong.
Column A Column B 8-20 2 x 5 + 3 20
There is a mistake in mathematical expression in Column A
4. Verbal Reasoning Question 10 (p616): SATIATE: (A) deny (B) fill (C) serve (D) starve The answer is: A
According to [...] SATIATE: 1. to supply with anything to excess, so as to disgust or weary; surfeit. 2. to satisfy to the full; sate.
The correct answer should be: B
Based on the above mistakes I discoverd, I decided to return this book. Please be aware of those mistakes before you buy this book!
I bought this book to help my 8th grade daughter prep for the ISEE test. She did most of the prep herself, but when she took the practice test in the book, I graded it using the answer sheet and then she and I went over any questions she got wrong. Boy was I surprised! The answer key was clearly wrong for several questions, and in at least two cases, the question itself had an error that made it impossible to get the right answer! I can't believe these people published this book, apparently without doing even rudimentary proof reading.
After she took the actual test, my daughter told me that the questions on the practice test were actually harder than the ones on the real test (I'm OK with that), but that the practice test didn't cover some of the more advanced material on the real test. Luckily for her, this more advanced material was stuff she had covered more recently in school, so she was already comfortable with it.
In general, I'm disappointed at the irresponsibility of the publishers. Had my daughter not wasted time on this book, we would have found a better resource. I'm sure that she did well on the test anyway, but the credit goes to my daughter and her current school, and not to this book.
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Significant changes were made in the past several years to both the SSAT and the ISEE. Only three SSAT/ISEE prep books on the market have printed new editions that addressed these changes: this book (Princeton Review), the Kaplan book, and the SSAT/ISEE for Dummies. Of the three new books, this is the best one.
The practice tests in this book reflect the updated test structures. For the most part, they also do a good job of replicating the difficulty level of the tests, with one major exception. The ISEE math (Upper Level and Middle Level) is much, much, much more difficult than the math in this book. Likely, the ISEE has increased the difficult level of its math so that 10th and 11th graders taking the UL ISEE can't just breeze through the math section of the test. However, this makes some of the math (think imaginary numbers and trigonometric functions) extremely difficult for 8th graders. The Princeton Review book does not address this difficult material at all. To its credit, the book does acknowledge (p. 3) the changes to the tests and mentions that Princeton Review was unable to make the appropriate adjustments in time for the book's press deadline.
Pros: -Better than Kaplan and Dummies, and definitely better than all the other outdated books -Practice drills are helpful -Strategic advice is mostly sound
Cons: -Numerous errors may overshadow the quality parts of the book. -Awkward organization: why split up the book into two completely separate parts (for SSAT and ISEE) when 80%+ of the content is the same on both tests? -Far too much emphasis on the positive benefits of cutting your losses and not attempting all questions.Read more ›
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