"THE BEST IN PHILADELPHIA" 

- Philadelphia Magazine

"THE BEST OF THE MAIN LINE"

-Main Line Media News

Academic Tutoring

For students who want to improve their understanding of a subject for a high school or college course, we offer professional academic tutoring. Our tutors are available to help students prepare for a test, complete homework, or further enrich their understanding of a subject. Tutors are available year-round, including the summer, for students looking to get a head start in their classes.

We offer academic tutoring in the subjects of: 

  • Math: all levels, including algebra, geometry, pre-calculus, calculus

  • Statistics 

  • Chemistry: all levels, including organic chemistry

  • Physics and engineering

  • Biology

  • English literature and writing

  • Spanish

  • Latin

  • Computing languages: R, Matlab, Python, JMP

 

AP Test Tutoring

The AP (Advanced Placement) tests are a collection of 31 multiple-choice and free-response tests given on individual subjects. Colleges grant course credit and/or advanced placement to students who obtain high scores on the examinations. Some colleges use AP test scores to exempt students from introductory coursework. Each college’s policy is different, but most require a minimum score of 3 or 4 (on the 1–5 scale) to receive college credit.

We offer individual tutoring for the AP subjects of English, Calculus, U.S. History, World History, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, and Spanish.

 
SAT II Subject Test Tutoring
The SAT subject tests are a collection of 20 multiple-choice tests given on individual subjects, taken to improve a student’s credentials for admission to college. Students typically choose which tests to take depending upon college entrance requirements for the schools to which they are planning to apply. Most selective colleges recommend that applicants submit scores for two subject tests. A handful of the most competitive schools, such as Georgetown University, still require three subject tests.

We offer group classes for several SAT subject tests. The classes run in the spring leading up to the June administration.We offer individual tutoring at any time of year for subject tests. In the spring, starting in April and leading up the June administration, we also offer group classes for subject tests in chemistry, physics, math 2, biology, U.S. history, and Latin.

Students will be challenged by concepts that are not often taught during the academic year, but appear on the standardized test. In addition to the class time, students will be responsible for homework, including practice tests and worksheets to reinforce concepts.

 
 

College Application Essay Tutoring

Our professional literature and writing tutor Bob Finegan offers one-on-one personalized sessions to help students write their college application essays. In the Summer Bob offers a course for student s to improve their essays in a group sessing. 

 

College Essay Workshop

This course will help students develop essay topics and drafts for the Common Application. Since narrative is the most effective form for the Common App personal statement, we’ll focus on storytelling skills. Students will learn to use elements of nonfiction craft to engage the audience’s sympathies by dramatizing compelling events.

Every student has personal experience that can be translated into a winning essay, but most high schools don’t spend enough time teaching this kind of writing. It can be hard to recognize the best essay material even when you spend days scanning your memory for it. Shaping that material to snare and sustain a reader’s interest isn’t easy either. Applying the principles and methods of creative nonfiction to this process can help students at every stage, from early brainstorming to final edits.

The college admissions essay is an early and pivotal opportunity to reflect on your character strengths and to introduce yourself using personal narrative. In this way it prefigures career-related storytelling occasions like the common (and daunting) interview question, “Tell me about yourself.” Developing a strong personal narrative for your college application not only helps you prepare for such challenges, but can itself be a mode of illuminating self-discovery.

The course will be conducted in workshop format. That is, we’ll review drafts as a class, starting with exemplary college essays, and then we’ll spend time brainstorming topics and discussing ways to refine class members’ drafts. The class limit of five students will ensure that each student’s drafts will receive plenty of attention, including detailed feedback on content, style and focus.

Graduate Test Tutoring

We offer tutoring for the GMAT, GRE, LSAT, and MCAT. Our rate is $280 per 1 hour session for all graduate test tutoring.

 

LSAT

The LSAT is the single most important aspect of your law school application. Admissions officers say LSAT score alone accounts for about 40-60% of the decision.

Prospective law students are lucky that the test makers have released close to 90 real LSAT tests to use, but without clear organization and strategies, you’ll be buried in a mountain of practice problems without an effective path to score improvement.

Our program materials include dozens of strategy worksheets, a comprehensive book of techniques, access to every LSAT question ever released, over 20 full-length (5-section) diagnostic tests, and a computerized scoring system that will break down your performance across many different metrics. Together with the guidance of a tutor, an uncommonly effective course of study emerges.

For students with little or no LSAT experience, our full program of 14-16 sessions is designed to take you from square one to complete expertise. And for students who want to fill in the gaps left by other books or courses, a few meetings with our expert tutor can help you address and fix your weak areas.

A better LSAT score comes from an organized breakdown of the material and a lot of hard work. We’ll give you both. 

GMAT

A business school degree can open new doors in your career path, and the GMAT is your first step along the way. MJ Test Prep’s GMAT course is a rigorous program designed to get you ready for every part of the test, from mastering the content to understanding how best to deal with the computer-adaptive format.

The test makers have released a generous number of practice questions, and a small collection of full simulated tests, but most students find they need expert guidance to best discover patterns in those problems, weaknesses in their own performance, and effective strategies for score improvement. 

Most students’ initial reaction to the Quantitative section is to conclude that they simply need to remember the high school math they forgot long ago. While refreshing your familiarity with certain math concepts is certainly necessary, maximizing your Quantitative score requires learning how GMAT math works, which is more about pattern recognition and strategic planning than simple mechanical calculation. We’ll show you how to master the test, not just recall high school math.

Our tutors also include extensive experience teaching the skills you’ll need in the Verbal section: techniques for dissecting the logic of arguments, an detailed understanding of grammar rules and rhetorical patterns, and ways analyze the reading  passages in the manner that is most useful for answering the questions.

A better GMAT score comes from an organized breakdown of the material and a lot of hard work. We’ll give you both.

GRE

The GRE is your gateway to graduate programs and an essential early step along your career path. Graduate programs and business schools use GRE scores to evaluate your readiness for graduate-level work. The GRE is a computer-based test with sections devoted to writing, math, and verbal skills. MJ Test Prep has a well-developed curriculum devoted to helping you master all three sections.

 

This test, unfortunately, has a smaller number of official test questions available from the test maker than any other major standardized test. That means we need to be especially resourceful in creating a comprehensive and realistic curriculum.

We have gathered every real question (including those found in some unexpected places) and done a thorough analysis of the pattern types. We have a rounded curriculum with a full strategy book, carefully selected questions from other comparable tests, and a set of recommendations for realistic supplemental books. Together with our tutors guidance, an uncommonly effective course of study emerges.

Whether you’re aiming for a Master’s degree, an MBA, or a Ph.D., we can help you achieve your best possible GRE score and realize your graduate school goals. 

MCAT

The Medical College Admission Test is a computer based  multiple-choice standardized exam for prospective medical students. Scores are reported in four sections:

 

  • Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems

  • Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems

  • Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations of Behavior

  • Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills

We offer preparation for all four sections, but we noticed that Chemistry and Biology are more in demand than the other sections.

High School Admissions Test Tutoring

MJ Test Prep offers individual tutoring sessions for the high school admissions tests. We recommend that students prepping for these tests start off by taking a full practice test in the office before coaching sessions are booked. The practice test will be scored within 48 hours. From there, we will offer feedback on the test and determine the best way to move forward.

The Independent School Entrance Examination, or ISEE, is an entrance exam used by many independent schools and magnet schools. The ISEE has three levels: the Lower level, for entrance into grades 5-6; Middle level, for entrance into grades 7-8; Upper level, for entrance into grades 9-12. All levels consist of five sections: Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, Reading Comprehension, Mathematics Achievement, and a 30-minute essay section. The test is approximately three hours long in total, including time for two breaks.

The Secondary School Admission Test, or SSAT, is an admissions test administered to students in grades 5-11 to help determine placement into independent or private junior high and high schools. Despite its similar name, the SSAT is not related to the SAT and is not administered by the College Board.

There are two levels of the SSAT: the Lower level for students in grades 5-7 and the Upper level, designed for students in grades 8-11. The SSAT consists of two parts: a brief essay and multiple-choice sections that include Mathematics, Reading Comprehension, and Verbal.

The Scholastic Testing Service High School Placement Test, or the HSPT, is an admissions tests administered to students applying to Catholic schools. This test is a five-part, multiple-choice test of verbal, quantitative, reading, mathematics, and language skills.

The coaches at MJ Test Prep are experienced in working with younger students and can help your child get the head start needed for a strong academic future. 

 

Our Tutors

Matt Joseph
Owner, SAT/ACT, GRE, GMAT, and Math SAT II Tutor

Dr. Matthew Joseph, a licensed school psychologist, has been tutoring for the SATs for over 25 years. His educational background includes an M.F.A. in creative writing from Cornell University, where he was awarded a fellowship upon his acceptance. He subsequently won an additional scholarship based on his ongoing academic excellence, and completed his doctoral dissertation, which examines the efficacy of various approaches of SAT coaching.

For this dissertation, he not only conducted extensive research regarding the effectiveness of SAT coaching, but also utilized his many years of coaching experience to analyze tens of thousands of SAT problems for the purpose of devising basic and easy-to-use solution skills to make taking the SAT a much more manageable task.

RJ Blazejewsky
SAT/ACT, and Math SAT II Tutor

RJ is the most experienced tutor on staff and specializes in helping students with high scores in both math and critical reading sections.

RJ graduated with honors from Miami of Ohio with a degree in business. She began her career as a campaign staff worker for several political candidates with the intention of going to law school. As a result of her strong performance as an LSAT preparation student, she was asked to become an instructor. Through this she became involved in test preparation and loved the work, while simultaneously becoming dissatisfied with politics.

She is now an icon here at MJ Test Prep as one of the most beloved tutors because of her kindness and good humor. RJ, despite her youthful energy, has been tutoring for over fifteen years.

Anthony Pryor
SAT/ACT, GRE, Math and Literature SAT II Tutor

Anthony graduated with honors from the University of Pennsylvania with a B.A. in English and Economics. Upon graduating he was hired by a prestigious national SAT prep company to head up their Philadelphia division. While there Anthony was responsible for hiring and training the instructors, implementing curriculum, and managing the entire administrative branch of the office. Because of his highly developed skills as an instructor he was also called upon to work with the high-end students who the other tutors could not easily accommodate. Anthony soon realized he preferred the tutoring to his managerial duties, and so parted ways and came to us in 2008 where he has been a stalwart ever since. He teaches for the SAT, ACT, and Subject Tests Math Level I, Math Level II, and Literature. He also helps students with essay writing, including the college personal statement.

Anthony takes his teaching cue from his many music teachers. Like music, the SAT or ACT is a performance. And with a plan, attention to detail, and some quality practice, anyone can have a great performance. With a little luck, you can have the best performance of your life.

And then you can put this part of the college application process behind you and focus on the fun stuff.

Besides music, Anthony’s main pursuits include in literature & Philly sports. #TTP

Matt Ryan
SAT/ACT and Literature SAT II Tutor

Matt holds a B.A. in English from the College of William and Mary; an M.A. in English Language and Literature from Yale University; and an M.F.A. in Dramatic Art from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He currently teaches 12th grade AP English at Methacton High School. Matt has tutored for the SAT, the ACT, the AP and subject tests for more than ten years.

Eric Borowsky
SAT/ACT, GRE, and Math SAT II Tutor

After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania with a B.A. in English and Cinema Studies, Eric headed out to Los Angeles to work in the film industry and write his own (supposedly) comedic screenplays. Since returning to the Philadelphia area, Eric has transitioned to a career in education.

In 2012, he instructed students of all ages as a part of Penn State’s Summer Reading Program and soon after began teaching at Folkshul, a Jewish Children’s School in Chestnut Hill. His newfound passion for education led him to MJ Test Prep in September of that year.​

Eric is our lead camp tutor for the summer and tutors students in one-on-one sessions. He believes that MJ’s rigorous curriculum provides students with not only the skills but also the self-confidence required to increase their standardized test scores.

Andy Snover
SAT/ACT and ISEE/SSAT/HSPT Tutor

Andrew is a graduate of the Schreyer Honors College of Penn State University, where he received his BA in English, with a Creative Writing Emphasis. He also received a Minor in History, assisted by the head start of 21 credits he earned from his success on Advanced Placement tests in high school. Originally from the Germantown section of Philadelphia, Andrew attended Central High School where he excelled at academics and was a National Merit Scholarship Finalist. Whether he’s working with an underprivileged high school student trying to master algebra or an elite NCAA athlete struggling to write a term paper, Andrew’s approach is to show the student that the subject at hand isn’t nearly as hard as it looks once it is unraveled piece by piece. He focuses on building a student’s confidence and is quick to apply positive reinforcement to continually engage and motivate the student.

Scott Seiderman
SAT/ACT and GMAT Tutor

Scott has an extensive background in test prep including working for the Princeton Review as a premier tutor for the SAT, ACT, GRE, and GMAT. He has been teaching preparation for standardized tests for the last ten years and has also run several high school programs designed to help students in school and assist them in the college selection and admissions process. Scott has an MBA from University of Southern California and has worked in both management and business strategy consulting. After working in the corporate world, Scott realized that teaching is his true passion and has been doing that ever since. In addition to test prep, he also teaches scuba-diving and yoga.

Scott’s central tenet in teaching test prep is that the biggest score increases come from students’ seeing the repetitive nature of the test, learning how to recognize every question type on the test, and having a clear and systematic method to quickly and efficiently answer each question type. He believes that given this framework, along with a lot of hard work… sprinkled with some good humor, every student can gain large score increases.

Matt Hamm
SAT/ACT, LSAT, and ISEE/SSAT/HSPT Tutor

Matt earned his BA in History and BBA in Finance and Business Economics from the University of Notre Dame and his JD from the New York University School of Law.

From the SAT and AP exams through the LSAT and three different state bar exams, Matt has gained skills and strategies that he’s excited to share with his students.

He’s been a practicing lawyer for more than a decade, and prior to that, tutored student-athletes and taught prep classes to prepare students for both the SAT and the LSAT.

Matt Tausch
SAT/ACT Tutor

Matt earned his B.A. in Political Science with a minor in Writing from Johns Hopkins University. He was consistently awarded Dean's list honors for his academic performance. After graduating, he taught English at a small school in northern China. Upon his return to America, Matt worked in the restaurant industry in Washington D.C. He returned to Philadelphia to be closer to family and to enjoy a career in standardized test prep. Matt has spent the last four years devoted to test preparation.

Having grown up in the Philadelphia area, Matt has firsthand experienced navigating the highly competitive high school landscape. The expectations colleges now have of applicants have never been higher, and the pressures students feel to perform well on tests can be overwhelming. Matt takes pride in serving as a guiding force through this process and assisting students in gaining knowledge, improving organization, and fostering confidence.

Emily Delisile
SAT/ACT Tutor

Emily earned her BA in history from the University of Pennsylvania in 2016, and is currently in her first year at Penn Law after spending two years in New York as an immigration paralegal. Emily was a student of Dr. Matt Joseph’s when preparing for her own SATs, and has since worked as both a private and group tutor preparing students for a variety of standardized tests, including the SAT, ACT, and city magnet school admissions exams. She’s excited to be working with students again at MJ Test Prep.

Jake Pearlstein
Student SAT/ACT Tutor

Jake Pearlstein is a Georgetown University student double-majoring in Finance and Accounting with a minor in classical theology. A former student of Matthew Joseph, Jake began teaching at MJ while still in high school and has since taught over five hundred hours of ACT and SAT instruction in both individual sessions and group classes. Jake is dedicated to helping his students reach their goals and draws upon his own experience to craft the most effective study plan for each individual student.
Jake encourages his students to do more than just what is expected and has found that his most successful students are able to self-motivate and take full advantage of MJ’s expansive resources.

Emilio Cicciavillani
Chemistry Tutor

Emilio’s students have a track record of extremely high scores on the AP Chemistry test, the SAT Chemistry Subject test, and on the chemistry and organic chemistry portions of the MCAT.
Emilio is our expert in all levels of organic and inorganic chemistry. He earned a B.S. in chemistry from MIT and an M.S. in organic chemistry from UC Irvine before working as a medicinal chemist at SmithKline Beacham developing potential medications for AIDS. Discovering that teaching was his true calling, Emilio worked as the AP chemistry & honors chemistry teacher at both The Baldwin School and The Haverford School.

Jim Popiel
Physics and Math Tutor

Dr. Popiel received his PhD in physics from Temple University in 1990. After publishing several papers on Quantum Mechanics, he came to a fork in the road: Understand Physics more deeply by moving forward traditionally OR understand it by following the multiple paths that precede it. He chose the latter, and to that end he established a private tutoring business, where he tutored high school, college, and graduate students in math, physics, and engineering. As Einstein said: "You do not really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother."

Jeff Goldader
Physics Tutor

Jeff Goldader graduated from the University of Washington with a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics and Astronomy in 1989 and earned his doctorate in Astronomy from the University of Hawaii in 1995. After a three-year fellowship at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, he was a Lecturer in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Pennsylvania from 1998-2003. In 2004, he joined the Baldwin School as the Upper School physics teacher, where he teaches Physics, Honors Physics, and Advanced Physics (calculus-based). During the summers, Dr. Goldader has served as an adjunct professor in astronomy at Widener University. He holds a Pennsylvania teaching certificate in Physics, Grades 7-12.

Susan Dorfman
Biology Tutor

Dr. Susan Dorfman holds a Ph.D. in Anatomy from the University of Pennsylvania Medical School and a BA in Biology from Temple University. After completing two post-doctoral fellowships in neurology at UPenn Medical School and working eleven years in a research lab, Susan became a teacher at the pre-college level in the independent school system. She has taught all levels of general science and biology from Kindergarten Science to Gross Anatomy in Dental School. Susan taught biology and Advanced Molecular and Cellular Biology at the Baldwin School for twenty-six years and also served as head of the science department for six years. She has been a private tutor for 20 years on the main line for students in both public and independent schools, tutoring high school level biology as well as prep for the SAT II in Biology, the AP Biology Exam and the Biology portion of the MCAT and DAT.

Rhonda Hughes
Math Tutor

Rhonda taught mathematics at Bryn Mawr College for thirty-one years. She earned her B.S., M.s., and Ph. D. degrees in mathematics from the University of Illinois at Chicago. After her retirement from Bryn Mawr, she worked for two and a half years at Khan Academy as a Math Content Specialist, where she contributed to the Common Core and SAT prep projects. She is currently Math Scholar in Residence at the Agnes Irwin School. She enjoys helping students who excel at math, as well as those who may struggle.

Elena Bertrand
Math Tutor

Elena’s love of math and natural ability to explain difficult concepts has led her to a career as an educator. Elena has been tutoring since high school, and continued as a student at Drexel University, working for the Math Resource Center and acting as a Teacher’s Assistant for a Calculus class. Elena graduated on the Dean’s list with a B.S. in Teacher Education from Drexel University and minors in Mathematics and Psychology. Upon graduation she began teaching eighth grade math at Ridley Middle School. In September 2011, she earned her Master’s Degree in Math Learning and Teaching from Drexel University. She currently teaches math at Agnes Irwin.

Mike Czahor
Statistics and Math Tutor

Michael S. Czahor graduated with honors from Rowan University in 2013 with a Bachelors in Mathematics. During his time as an undergraduate, he was a statistician intern for the Philadelphia 76ers. After graduation, in 2014, Michael was awarded an Integrative Graduate Education Research Trainee (IGERT) Fellowship on behalf of the National Science Foundation to pursue statistical research in the field of wind energy. In 2016, Michael earned a Masters of Science in Statistics at Iowa State University. While earning his Masters , Michael was hired as a research consultant at the Fraunhofer Research Institute in Hanover, Germany. In 2018, Michael earned a dual-Doctorate of Philosophy in Statistics at Iowa State University. While doing his doctoral work, Michael led efforts to analyze Big 12 Referees in NCAA Basketball games. Just after receiving his doctorate in 2018, Michael was hired as a Quantitative Analyst for the Philadelphia Phillies, where he currently works full-time.
Michael’s teaching experience ranges across all levels of mathematics and statistics. Some highlights include: from 2016 - 2018 Michael instructed courses in Business Statistics and Engineering Statistics at the university level. Michael’s efforts in teaching led him to be a recipient of the Teaching Excellence Award, given to the top 10% of teaching assistants at Iowa State University. Outside of work and research Michael enjoys coaching youth sports, traveling, and watching baseball.
Michael’s primary tutoring subjects include: Business Statistics, Time Series Analysis, Bayesian Statistics, Reliability Statistics, Probability and Random Variables, Elementary Statistics, Discrete Mathematics, Number Theory, etc. Michael is also proficient in the following softwares and computing languages: R, Matlab, Python, JMP, RStan, RJAGS, Tableau, SAS, C/++, and SQL.

Bob Finegan
Literature and Writing Tutor

Bob holds a B.A. in English and History from the University of Delaware, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. Additionally, he holds an M..F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of Pittsburgh, where he was awarded a teaching fellowship.

​Bob has been a professor of composition and literature at Drexel University since 1993. He has also taught workshops at the University of Pennsylvania Writers Conference and in the graduate creative writing program at Rosemont College. Since 2012 Bob has served as a writing consultant at the Wharton School, where he helped to develop a graduate writing program and continues to coach MBA students.

Bob’s short stories have been published in The Sun, River Styx, The Antietam Review and other magazines, and he has received a literature fellowship from The Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. He has been with MJ Test Prep since 2006, and besides tutoring for the SAT and SAT Subject Test in literature, he specializes in helping students with college admissions essays and general writing skills. Bob is VP of Sales at 11Trees, an e-Learning software company.

John Taylor-Branik
Literature and Writing Tutor

John Taylor-Baranik holds a B.A. in English Literature and an M.S. in Secondary English Education from the University of Pennsylvania. While an undergrad at Penn, John tutored high schoolers and university students, worked at the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, and mentored students as a Resident Assistant. He won several awards and fellowships for his archival research and honors thesis and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa.

John teaches humanities courses at Carver High School in the Philadelphia School District, where he coaches Cross-country, Indoor Track, and Outdoor Track. John prides himself on getting to know each student as an individual and takes a strengths-based approach to tutoring.

James Holmes
History Tutor

A native of Denver, Colorado, James moved to Pennsylvania in 2013 to begin his Master’s research at Villanova University, where he specialized in the history of Europe and the Islamic World, and tutored students in the Villanova Writing Center. After graduating, he took a position at Holy Family University, teaching the history of the ancient, medieval, and modern worlds and encompassing the entire globe, from China to the Middle East to Europe to the Americas. In the summer of 2016, he enrolled in the intensive immersion language program with the Middlebury Language Schools, making Arabic his third foreign language, after Spanish and French. James is also an experienced musician, enjoying playing the piano, clarinet, saxophone, drums, and singing in his free time.

Ariadna Fink
Spanish Tutor

Ariadna is a native Spanish speaker and has been teaching Spanish at Agnes Irwin school for several years. She can help with academic Spanish and SAT Subject Tests.

Charles Shuman
Statistics Tutor

 
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"THE BEST IN PHILADELPHIA" 

- Philadelphia Magazine

"THE BEST OF THE MAIN LINE"

-Main Line Media News