Six months into this Perfect Score Project, and I can spot a College Board knock off question a mile away.  They feel like impostors and make me suspicious.

They feel like handbags from Canal Street: almost real, but the lining starts to feel funny, and then the zipper sticks, and soon even the decorative stitching looks “a little off.”

The question is, what’s the big deal?

The answer is, I’m not sure.  Maybe impostors are good for test prep?  The 800 math kids swear by Dr. Chung’s book.  My friend Catherine loves Chung’s book and the reviews are amazing:

I have been using the College Board SAT book and other SAT books for many years. I was really desperate to learn and aim high on the SAT score which I couldn’t get. But when I got Dr. John Chung’s SAT MATH book my SAT score has increased greatly in over few months.

Could working with impostor material make your knowledge more flexible?

It’s no accident that the College Board questions feel like a genre unto themselves.  They’ve been voted on!

Every SAT question goes through a very careful review process before making it into your exam booklet. Each question that you see has been:

  • Reviewed by a team of experts, including math and English teachers, to make sure that it reflects what most college-bound students are learning in school.
  • Thoroughly tested to make sure that it is fair for students of all backgrounds and ethnicities.

Questions that don’t make it through these steps will never show up on an actual exam.


They have been heavily vetted, and not just by one writer.


Illustrations by Jennifer Orkin Lewis