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Anika Manzoor

Meet Anika!

Hey, hey, hey! I’m Anika, the newest member of the Magoosh SAT/ACT blogging team. I’m excited to share what I know about SAT/ACT strategies and help you on your way to achieve your post-high school dreams, but first let me tell you a story about my own journey with test prep.

When I was in your shoes, I dreaded the day where I had to take the SAT. I was frustrated with how every math question seemed to be worded in a way to trip you up. The reading passages were so boring that I felt my concentration ebbing within the first couple of words. And the first time I practiced a timed essay, I got an average score, which was a blow to my ego since I always took pride in my writing abilities.  If you find yourself nodding along to this, then I have some great news for you: this can all change, as it did for me.


This used to be me during reading comprehension.

I wanted to go to a top-tier university, but I knew I did not have much of a shot with my GPA, so I really needed to step up my SAT game. Fortunately, my mom came up with a great system to motivate me to effectively study for the SAT while spending a fraction of the cost of test prep courses. She would pay me $20 for every practice test I took only if I increased my score from my last highest score (it’s a great idea, no? You’re welcome :D). With dollars signs in my eyes, I collected all the official practice tests I could get my hands on and dedicated the summer of my junior year to knocking them out.

My mom’s plan worked like a charm. After months of practice, I felt like I finally cracked the code. My ability to not make careless errors on the math section improved, I learned how to write a great SAT essay in 25 minutes, and suddenly, I found myself even being interested in the reading passages. I never thought this would EVER happen to me, but I actually started to find the SAT…fun. I know that may sound unforgivably nerdy, but me finding the SAT fun enabled me to single-handedly raise my score by over 300 points. And through my students, I am witness to the fact that even greater success awaits you if you truly work for it.  

I started tutoring SAT because as someone who understands both how discouraging and empowering these tests can be, I am committed to eradicating standardized tests as an obstacle for otherwise talented and hard-working students. If you’re at all worried about the SAT/ACT, I hope that by sharing my experience, you might find relief in knowing that you can learn to become a fantastic test taker. Together, let’s knock these tests out of the park, shall we?!


About Anika Manzoor

A 2013 graduate of Grinnell College, Anika dedicated her first few years as a newly-minted professional to teaching. In addition to being an SAT instructor, she served as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant at a Malaysian secondary school for two years. Considering that both opportunities allowed her to explore fun ways to teach and relate to students who were otherwise bored out of their minds, she is excited to share that expertise on the Magoosh High School blog.

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