Sam H.

Mount Kisco, NY


Expert SAT/ACT Tutor, plus Latin, College Essays, English, and Writing

500+ Hours
Background check passed as of 11/11/12
4.9 average from 121 ratings
Very knowledgeable!
— Grace, New Rochelle, NY on 6/24/15


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University of Southern California
B.A., Philosophy
Columbia University


University of Southern California (B.A., Philosophy)

Columbia University (Other)

About Sam

Hello, and thank you for your interest! Let me introduce myself, starting with my educational background. I am an alumnus of the University of Southern California, graduating in 2011 with a bachelor’s in philosophy. Following my undergraduate degree, I spent 3 years working in a psychology/neuroscience research lab at Columbia University, producing multiple conference presentations/symposia, as well as co-authoring two papers currently under review in scientific journals.

I bring over 6 years of experience as a tutor and test prep instructor. My specialties include SAT/ACT verbal preparation, Latin, English/Writing (including AP English), college essays, and college counseling.

I first began tutoring high school peers at Fordham Preparatory School (Bronx, NY) and later served as a writing consultant for one year in the Writing Center at Pace University (New York, NY). Since 2011, I have worked at several tutoring/test prep companies—including as a Master Tutor—helping hundreds of students, from elementary school to the Ivy League and even adult professionals, succeed. With hard work and my tutoring, students can expect remarkable improvements in their school grades and test scores, all the while genuinely learning and boosting their confidence and motivation. Many of my former students have gone on to attend top colleges/universities across the country, including Yale, Columbia, Dartmouth, Duke, Johns Hopkins, and more.

As a tutor, I pride myself on making even the densest content as simple and straightforward as possible for students. Since students are frequently afraid to admit they don't understand something, I emphasize explaining the material from several perspectives and interacting with the student through further examples until I believe he/she has fully grasped a topic. My approach centers on building a solid, genuine base of comprehension and skill in any content area I teach, supplemented (especially in the case of test preparation) with the most effective strategies and techniques. What follows are amazing results—both in the classroom and on test day.


For the past 5+ years, I have helped students master the verbal sections of both the SAT and ACT. Many of my students increase their verbal and overall test scores dramatically, sometimes in just a few weeks and even after working with another private tutor or test prep company.

For the new SAT, I prepare students for the Reading, Writing/Language (English), and essay sections; and, for the ACT, the English, Reading, and Writing (essay) sections.

*Please note, while I prepare students only for the SAT/ACT verbal sections, I am more than happy to assist with finding a complementary SAT Math or ACT Math/Science tutor should you need one.
Hello, and thank you for your interest! Let me introduce myself, starting with my educational background. I am an alumnus of the University of Southern California, graduating in 2011 with a bachelor’s in philosophy. Following my undergraduate degree, I spent 3 years working in a psychology/neuroscience research lab at Columbia University, Read more

24 hours notice required
Travel Radius
Travels within 20 miles of Mount Kisco, NY 10549
Background Check: Passed

"Very knowledgeable!"

- Grace, New Rochelle, NY on 6/24/15

"Sam knows how to target needs and get results"

- Christian, West Harrison, NY on 11/3/14

"Amazing Latin tutor"

- Anne, White Plains, NY on 6/12/14

"Exceptional program and great tutor"

- Jimmy, Ardsley, NY on 2/21/13

"Excellent Tutor"

- Cathryn, Stamford, CT on 1/22/13

"Great tutor, very thorough"

- Lynette, Larchmont, NY on 7/25/12

"Great Tutor!"

- Karen, Cortlandt Manor, NY on 6/14/12

"Excellent tutor!"

- Marky, Old Greenwich, CT on 9/13/11

"Great Tutor!"

- Renata, Greenwich, CT on 8/9/11
Algebra 1, Elementary (K-6th), Elementary Math, Prealgebra, Statistics
ACT English,
ACT Reading,
Grammar, Proofreading, SAT Reading,
SAT Writing, Vocabulary, Writing
Test Preparation:
ACT English,
ACT Reading,
College Counseling, SAT Reading,
SAT Writing, SSAT
Special Needs:
Elementary (K-6th), Elementary Math, Phonics
Elementary Education:
Elementary (K-6th), Elementary Math, Grammar, Phonics, Spelling, Vocabulary, Writing

Approved subjects are in bold.

Approved subjects

In most cases, tutors gain approval in a subject by passing a proficiency exam. For some subject areas, like music and art, tutors submit written requests to demonstrate their proficiency to potential students. If a tutor is interested but not yet approved in a subject, the subject will appear in non-bold font. Tutors need to be approved in a subject prior to beginning lessons.

ACT English

For each session, students complete a practice ACT English section from an official or previously administered ACT exam. During sessions, I grade and review the practice section with the student, concentrating on questions he/she answered incorrectly. Since English grammar is a major focus of this section, I typically cover several grammar topics per session, with priority given to the topics that appear on the exam most frequently. I have students write down in a notebook each topic we cover, including several examples and complementary tips/strategies per entry. Taking notes allows students to process the content more thoroughly during sessions and have it for future reference between sessions, especially to study before the following practice test.

ACT Reading

Unlike the SAT Reading, the difficulty of the ACT Reading section lies primarily in its strict time requirement: 4 passages/40 questions to be completed in 35 minutes. Accordingly, I work with students to identify the general Reading strategy/approach that will best allow them to complete the section in time, while maximizing their comprehension. As with other test areas, students are typically asked to complete a full practice ACT Reading section for each session. During sessions, we work to address timing/pacing, comprehension strategies, and the optimal approach to each question.


I have over 6 years of experience tutoring students in English, entailing all aspects of the language: spelling, vocabulary, grammar, and the full application of these skills in writing.

From 2007-2008, I served as a Writing Consultant in the Pace University Writing Center (New York City). Since 2011, I have continued tutoring English and language skills in general, while also dedicating much time to preparing students more specifically for the verbal components (English, reading, writing/essay) of the SAT/ACT. In the course of my tutoring, I've worked with hundreds of students to hone their language skills in order to meet the demands of school subjects, standardized testing, and college admissions essays.


My tutoring experience in English and writing also extends to ESL (English as a second language), and I have helped many foreign students, including adults, grasp and apply to writing the grammar, syntax, and other necessary principles of the English language.


As a student, I completed 3 years of high school Latin and 1 semester of upper-level college Latin, earning an "A" in each class. I scored a 760/800 on the SAT Subject Test in Latin and twice earned the highest distinction of "summa cum laude" on the National Latin Exam.

I have tutored Latin for almost 7 years, working with students from 6th to 11th grade. I teach Latin to students looking to improve in their school courses, as well as to entirely new beginners who wish to learn the language and reap its benefits.

With each student, I emphasize a true understanding of Latin and its grammar, rather than the "bits-and-pieces" comprehension that most students acquire from classroom instruction, causing them to fall behind--especially as the material becomes increasingly difficult. I pride myself in bringing an expert yet simple and easy-to-digest tutoring style to all of my Latin students, no matter the age or ability, showing them that they are capable of learning and conquering this often challenging language!


I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from the University of Southern California (currently ranked 11th nationally for study in Philosophy).

My cumulative GPA in the Philosophy major (total of 10 classes taken) was a 3.83. My studies were diverse and included courses in Ethics, Metaphysics, Formal Logic, the History of Philosophy (Ancient Greek Philosophy, Medieval Philosophy, and 19th- and 20th- Century Philosophy), Philosophy of Religion, and Philosophy of Language.

SAT Reading

I specialize in verbal preparation for both the SAT and ACT exams, and have worked for elite test prep companies charging as much as $175 per hour for my services.

For the SAT, I tutor students in the Reading and Writing sections and, for the ACT, in the Reading, English, and Writing sections. Since I do not tutor the Math section on the SAT, or the Math/Science sections on the ACT, the students who stand to benefit the most from tutoring with me are those who either have a separate Math (and Science, if taking the ACT) tutor, or who are already strong in Math/Science, but who possess incommensurate verbal skills.

I have tutored well over 100 students for the SAT and ACT, many of whom have increased their scores dramatically, often even after having a previous tutor or after taking classes with a major test prep company. Throughout the tutoring, our sessions are customized to address both the student's strengths and weaknesses. My preparation method for the SAT is heavily practice-oriented, so for each session, students complete practice sections from either a previously administered SAT or an official practice test.


Preparing students for standardized tests--from elementary school to college--has been a hallmark of the 6+ years I've spent tutoring.

In addition to the SAT/ACT, I am available to tutor students in SSAT and ISEE, at all levels of these exams and across all sections, from verbal to math.

In tutoring with me for any exam, students can expect an expert yet patient approach that stresses true understanding of the content paired with the most efficient test-taking strategies. I believe students and parents will find my emphasis on slow, patient instruction--aided by the use of simple explanations and examples--to be conducive to an enjoyable and successful program of test preparation with students of all ages, but especially those who are younger.


I have experience tutoring students aged 10 to 40 in English, particularly writing. As mentioned above, I worked in the Writing Center at Pace University, assisting college
students in English writing, especially in the context of specific essays and other
written assignments given as undergraduate or graduate coursework across various disciplines.

While an undergraduate, I took three courses in writing and was editor of the Journal
of Law and Society at the University of Southern California.

College Admissions Essays:

I am available to help students with their college admissions essays. I have worked with many students (often applying to highly competitive colleges and universities) to create stellar essays that accentuate the
student's key attributes and complement the more objective criteria (GPA, SAT scores, etc.) that colleges see elsewhere in the applications. Several of my own
admission essays have been purchased by websites in order to be published for prospective students to use as guides.

The process for developing excellent admissions essays typically involves three stages:

(1) an outlining/brainstorming session, in which the student and I choose what the student will be writing about and the general organization of the essay; (2) a review/revision of a rough draft the student creates; and (3) one or more follow-up sessions to perfect subsequent drafts, ensuring that the organization and writing is
clear, and there are no grammatical/spelling errors.

*If you would like to see examples of some of the great essays my past students have written, please email me.

University of Southern California
B.A., Philosophy
Columbia University


University of Southern California (B.A., Philosophy)

Columbia University (Other)

Very knowledgeable!

Sam helped me prepare for the English portions of my ACT exam. Sam was very familiar with the test makers and the ACT's format. His combined English prowess and test insight were invaluable. He helped guide me through each question, and showed me the most efficient way to score well on the exam. I ended up getting a 35 on the English section, and a 35 on the Reading section because of Sam. He's

— Grace, New Rochelle, NY on 6/24/15

Hourly rate

Standard Hourly Rate: $125.00

Cancellation: 24 hours notice required

Travel policy

Sam will travel within 20 miles of Mount Kisco, NY 10549.