Is Princeton Review Good? (Test Prep 2024)

By: Rafal Reyzer
Updated: Jan 23rd, 2024

a review of princeton review - featured graphic

Are you wondering if courses from Princeton Review are good, and lead to an improvement in scores?

The short answer is that it depends on which test you’re trying to pass, and how dedicated are you to your course of study. Studies are proving that test prep can improve an average score by 5% to 12% depending on the test you take. Most students who take TPR courses report an improvement of at least a couple of points.

The company even guarantees a certain score if you take their premium courses:

This kind of bold move proves the courses are effective. But you shouldn’t expect miracles. Acknowledge that the time you put into studying and your level of self-discipline will determine your score more than anything else. The Princeton Review courses are best for MCAT, AP, ACT, and SAT. If you’re taking the GRE or LSAT, there are some better alternatives on the market.

How TPR is Reviewed by Students and the Learning Community?

You can check TPR’s average score and reviews from students who took the course on Trustpilot. At the time of this writing, it holds a score of 8/10 based on almost 600 reviews.

princeton review score ranking

If you read some opinions, you’ll see that test-takers usually recommend their services. A few are angry or disappointed because of missed or canceled classes, or small technical problems that prevented them from taking full advantage of the courses. But these situations are rare. Other review sites usually score TPR prep at 4 / 5 or 5 / 5. The courses are quite expensive (live online costs $799 to $2999 and self-paced costs $179 to $799) but in the end, this may turn out to be a good investment. That’s because you’ll be able to get into a better school and possibly get merit-based scholarships with a higher score.

Related content:

Are The Princeton Review Test Prep Courses Effective?

Based on opinions and reports I gathered from Quora, Reddit, and different student forums, TPR courses do work (mostly for MCAT, AP, ACT, and SAT). Of course, the top option would be to hire a private tutor. Studies have shown that this method of study increases students’ scores the most. But not everyone has money ($50-$100 per hour) to hire a teacher. That’s where an online class or even a self-paced course may come in handy. By logging into the TPR dashboard, you’ll see a personalized study plan and performance reports. All of this will help you to achieve higher scores along the way. Most of the TPR practice questions are harder than the real-world exams, which means you’ll get a more thorough prep.

princeton review mcat

Is Princeton Review Good for MCAT?

Based on my observations, and the opinions of dozens of students, Princeton Review offers the best MCAT prep course on the market. The 7.5-hour test is a major challenge for most students. Investing in proper prep is a good idea as a slightly higher score can mean a big difference in the med-school application process. Most students who take the “live-online” course (priced at around $2649), report a score improvement of 7 to 10 points compared to their previous score. The courses offer a guarantee of at least 510 points which is already a decent MCAT score.

Here are all the major features of the courses on offer:

MCAT Live Online Ultimate (Princeton Review)
Price Check the price here
Live classroom time 123 hours
Books A set of 11 books
Full-length online practice tests 15 practice tests
Personal live 1-to-1 coaching 0h (but available at an additional cost)
On-demand instructional videos 500+ hours of on-demand video
Practice questions with explanations 10.000+ practice questions
Guarantee MCAT 510+ guarantee option. Improve your score by at least 10 points get at least 510, or your money back.
Study Manager Missions (gamification of the course) Yes
Email assistance Yes (technical)

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princeton review sat act

Is Princeton Review Good for the SAT/ACT?

It all depends on your current baseline score. If you’re already scoring high and find yourself in the top 20% of test-takers, the course usually won’t be of much help. In this situation, it’s best to focus on crunching more full-length practice tests until you hit the desired score. But if you need just a little push (2-5 points on the ACT or 30-50 points on the SAT) to get into your dream college, taking a course is a great idea. But if you’re taking the course, make sure you crunch the materials from the College Board as well. You’ll find they’re a bit more straightforward than the ones from TPR. What I like about these courses is that they’re not super expensive and quite often you can get discounts on them. Another great thing is that they offer an improved score guarantee with the live online courses. That’s at least 31 points on the ACT and 1400 points on the SAT. These are the kinds of scores that will let you get into college more easily. The price range is $250 for a self-paced course, $750 for the “ultimate” course, and around $1200-$1400 for the courses with the strongest guarantees. Princeton also offers a range of SAT/ACT prep books that contain extra materials and mock tests. Most students who take the course improve their score by 2-4 points on the ACT and 30-50 points on the SAT. I think that’s a decent improvement well worth the investment.

Here are the main features of the SAT/ACT courses from TPR:

Princeton Review Ultimate SAT Course
Price Check the price here
Live classroom time 18 hours
Books Yes, 3 books included with the course
Full-length online practice tests Yes, 3 scheduled, proctored practice tests + 19 additional tests
On-demand instructional videos 140+ instructional SAT videos
Practice questions with explanations 240 online drills + 2000+ practice questions
Guarantee Yes, higher score guarantee (1240+ and 1400+ guarantees with premium courses)
Email assistance Yes, technical assistance
Mobile learning app Yes – Parent Portal + Student Portal
Personalized study plan Yes
Progress tracking and reports Yes

princeton review gre gmat

Is Princeton Review Good for GRE / GMAT?

GRE and GMAT are necessary for most business and marketing schools. TPR has a decent offer here, but I’ve found that other companies such as Magoosh and The Economist offer comparable courses for a low price ($99 – $450). The self-paced option from TPR is quite affordable ($499) but you’ll have to pay around $1000 for the most comprehensive version of the course. Anyway, with TPR you’ll get over a thousand practice questions, and 4 practice tests. But these types of materials are also available in inexpensive books. It’s great to use TPR to familiarize yourself with the exam, and then use Manhattan Prep, Magoosh, and ETS books for practice tests. The thing about the GRE is that you don’t necessarily need a lot of guidance and instruction. If you have a decent online platform where you can crunch practice tests and vocabulary, that’s good enough, and you don’t have to pay too much for it. Especially because some of the GRE teachers are rather inexperienced, and they’ll simply repeat what’s already in your book. It’s always great to invest in extra prep, but in this case, it doesn’t have to break the bank.

Here are the main features of the GRE courses from TPR:

Princeton Ultimate GRE Live Online
Price Check the price here
Live classroom time 24 hours of live expert instruction
Books 1-2 books provided with the course
Full-length online practice tests 8 computer adaptive-by-section practice exams
On-demand instructional videos 24 hours of video content available
Practice questions with explanations 3500+ practice questions
The Official Test Day Experience No
Guarantee Higher score guarantee. If you’re not satisfied, you can take the course again for free or get your money back.

Related content: Kaplan vs. Princeton Review – Which One Is Better?

princeton review lsat

Is Princeton Review Good for LSAT?

Here, the opinions differ, as there are lots of great LSAT options on the market. Many people swear by Princeton, but you can use other courses like Magoosh, Khan Academy, and especially 7sage, which will give you the same, or even better experience than TPR. 7sage is an especially popular course among students and it costs much less than the one from TPR. It has a 14-day money-back guarantee, so it might be worth trying it before signing up for the pricier option. Then there’s also Kaplan but their LSAT courses fall short on too many levels to be considered a viable option. The biggest flaw is hiring inexperienced teachers. This may also be the case with Princeton Review as they usually hire people who scored high on the LSAT but don’t have many years of experience teaching. That’s why in this department it’s better to pass on both options and just go with a self-paced course which will be equally effective.

Here are the main features of the LSAT courses from TPR:

Princeton LSAT Ultimate Live Online
Price Check the price here
Live classroom time 84 hours of live instruction
Books Provided with the course (see below)
Full-length online practice tests 6 full-length proctored exams
Personal live 1-to-1 coaching No (but you can get it as an additional option – on-demand 1-to-1 tutoring)
On-demand instructional videos 150+ hours of online on-demand video content
Practice questions with explanations Thousands of questions with explanations
Guarantee Higher score guarantee. If you’re not satisfied, you can take the course again for free or get your money back.

princeton review ap

Is Princeton Review Good for AP?

The AP courses from Princeton Review are recommended, as almost no other prep company deals with this test. TPR is an exception here as it offers a specialized yet affordable ($149) cram course which also comes with a section-specific book. These intensive courses give you 6 hours of live-action as well as the most effective strategies for dealing with the test. All areas of AP are covered, including world history, US history, English language, English literature, US government, calculus, biology, chemistry, physics, statistics, and European history. These courses are conducted around 2 or 3 times per month and give you two, 3-hour intense sessions of AP prep. The book, which usually costs around $30 is included in the course. It looks like a good and inexpensive deal to me.

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What About the Quality of the Books?

I can recommend the Princeton Review books with a clear conscience. They’re rather inexpensive (around $20 a pop). But they contain a wealth of information and most importantly give you access to a huge amount of practice questions and a few full-length tests. Some of them have over 500 pages filled with useful tips and strategies. Their books are like a self-paced course in miniature and at a much lower cost. Most of the TPR books receive 4 out of 5 or 4,5 out of 5 scores on sites like Amazon. The titles relate to all the major exams. The ones for the MCAT are especially recommended as it’s a set of 7 different titles you can buy and use as your little course. These study bundles receive excellent reviews from pre-med students. Note that if you take one of the prep courses, you’ll receive the books as a part of the package. But if you decide on a self-paced option, you’ll probably have to buy them separately. One title that TPR is known for is the Complete Book of Colleges (updated every year), which is a great resource if you’re starting to apply to a college. You can check different titles on Princeton Review’s Amazon page.


As you can see, the effectiveness of the Princeton Review courses depends on which course you take as well as your preferred method of study. You can expect moderate-to-good success with these courses and you don’t have to spend more than $1000 on a live-online option because there are lots of great self-paced courses available at a lower price. Next up, you may want to explore a list of top sites that let you teach English online.

Rafal Reyzer

Rafal Reyzer

Hey there, welcome to my blog! I'm a full-time entrepreneur building two companies, a digital marketer, and a content creator with 10+ years of experience. I started to provide you with great tools and strategies you can use to become a proficient digital marketer and achieve freedom through online creativity. My site is a one-stop shop for digital marketers, and content enthusiasts who want to be independent, earn more money, and create beautiful things. Explore my journey here, and don't miss out on my AI Marketing Mastery online course.