"Michael Romano gave me everything that I could have asked for from an SAT test tutor--sage advice, a relaxed atmosphere, and a 650 point improvement. He's the Bay Area's Best, no matter what your needs are."
Menlo School 2011, Atherton
"The name Mr. Test Prep should be changed to Mr. Miracle because what I experienced through my SAT test tutoring with Michael was nothing short of that. Before tutoring with Michael I never dreamed of coming to Stanford, but Michael's "go get 'em" drive and his incredible way of teaching helped bring me to this amazing university."
Menlo-Atherton High School '07
Stanford University '11
"Michael was fabulous with both my boys, not just by helping them with their SAT Test Prep but more importantly, by making the drudgery fun! I never heard a single complaint about going to his sessions. I did hear about shooting hoops, laughing a lot, and about how cool he was. Learning must be enjoyable or exciting to be effective, and certainly that approach worked in their case as both made SIGNIFICANT improvements in their Math and Verbal SAT test scores after their work with "Mr. Test Prep". I recommend him to all who ask (and all who don't ask). Your student won't be disappointed."
Pediatrician- Palo Alto,CA
"Working with Michael Romano was an outstanding experience. My test scores increased by over 1000 points !!! I gained the tools to reach my full potential as a test taker, and I was able to carry these tools into a college. The process of learning test-taking skills would normally be associated with mind-bending boredom but Michael’s enthusiasm and personality change the stereotype. I can remember looking forward to Thursday afternoons when I would go to Michael Romano’s' test prep. I have recommended his test prep course to friends and family. Everyone is in agreement that he is the best in the business."
Gunn High School class of 2003, Palo Alto
American University class of 2008
Peace Corps 2008 - 2010
MICHAEL IS THE MAN! :) Studying with Michael Romano for my SAT/ACT test preparation was probably the best decision I made. Before him, I had tried every other method of studying from reading the books to small group classes, yet nothing seemed to be effective judging by the test results. With the help of Michael, I was able to jump up at least 400 points. He observed my test-taking skills and compiled a great game plan for me so that I could better improve those scores. He never assigned homework so I never had to stress about coming in unprepared. He was really laid back, funny, and chill, which made me feel real comfortable around him. He was even available via Skype for when I had conflicting schedules to where I couldn't make it to his place, which was VERY convenient. He even offered to help me with my college essays and was great in helping me choose the right college. Trust me, you'll definitely get your money's worth working with Michael!
Saint Francis, Mountain View '11
The best thing that I did for my son was when I picked up the phone and called Mr. Test Prep, Michael Romano. Before meeting Michael, my son took the SAT a couple of times and many practice tests. He not only had a hard time improving his score, he was also getting more and more stressed about studying and retaking the SAT test. After meeting Michael, everything changed. He was happy to study with Michael, and was confident in taking the SAT again! His score improved drastically. I wish I had a snap shot of him when he saw his raised score!! His eyes and mouth were wide opened with disbelief!! Michael is more than a great tutor; he is a great friend. He is personal and genuinely cares about his students. I highly recommend Michael to anyone. Michael is not only able to change your child’s test scores; he is able to change your child’s future.
Parent of Menlo School '12 Student, Atherton
Michael raised my score from PSAT test to SAT for little above 1000 points. Looking back at college (top tier university - if you care about rankings) and high school, I’ve never had better tutor/teacher than Michael – I promise you it’s true. He was highly recommended by several friends from my high school because of his approach to teaching/preparing for SAT test. Frankly, I hated the idea that I would be evaluated based on SAT score since English wasn’t my first language but after being tutored by Michael SAT test taking became an enjoyable weekly routine. The first time I met Michael, I was shocked how he develops friendly relationships with his students and has a perfect balance of teaching, giving tips and making the preparation as efficient as possible. My situation was much different than many of his other students because I went to school in eastern Europe where I spoke a different language. I came to US as a junior in high school and my English was very poor. Given my situation Michael took a different approach to my preparation and made my preparation very efficient and surprisingly fun. We approached many tests from different angles until we found what works best for me. After we figured it out we kept improving on my score by very high margins. What Michael did a great job is tutoring me through this process. I was very lost at first, but Michael showed me the shortcuts (many useful tricks) and placed me on the right path to scoring high on SAT. By the end the SAT test taking was easy, all I had to do was to execute on “our” (Micheal’s) plan. If you are in similar situation to mine, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND YOU MICHAEL ROMANO.
Sacred Heart Prep, Atherton '07
Cornell University '11
Michael is an excellent teacher! He helped me prepare for both the ACT and the SAT tests, which allowed me to feel comfortable and confident taking the two tests. I enjoyed practicing in an environment similar to that of the actual test. His system of working on a section or two and then reviewing together worked well and I found that I remembered the questions we had gone over better that way. I would highly recommend Mr. Test Prep to any student looking to get ahead in test preparation - he is worth it!"
Menlo Atherton '12
Michael Romano is a top-notch SAT tutor. Not only did he help me reach my SAT and SAT II test score goals, but he also made studying fun! My sessions usually involved taking practice tests, making vocabulary SAT test scores, and one-on-one chats with Michael to go over my answers and to learn test-taking strategies. In the early stages of preparing for the SAT test, I struggled to finish each section within the time limits. However, Michael's unique tips and encouragement helped me learn to beat the clock. By the time I took the SAT test I was able to finish each section with extra time and I even achieved the high SAT test scores necessary to get into my first choice college! Michael maintains a laid back, stress-free environment that prepares students to conquer the SAT anxiety-free. I would recommend Michael to any student preparing to take the SAT or ACT tests.
Sacred Heart Prep, Atherton '07
Tufts University '11
Mr. TEST PREP is the MAN!!! He's the best test prep tutor in the bay area! His teaching style works with any student, so no matter if the student needs to improve by 500 points or achieve the perfect score, he changes his style for each student. Michael is always available so it was never a problem for me to come in and get a lesson or take a practice test. Michael doesn't solely teach how to do well on tests, he gives advice and wants to get to know the student he is working with. His methods prepare you for the exam on test day so you will be very comfortable with the testing procedures. Michael improved my writing scores by over a hundred points and taught me all the tips and tricks that I needed. He will always help you strive to improve each day and will never let your stay level. You can also look forward to him playing on the piano during the breaks! His experience in the test prep industry is shown by how he approaches each student. He is the BEST!
Palo Alto High School '11
Wake Forest University '15
When we started our daughter, Hannah, with an early introduction to Michael Romano's test prep formula, we didn't know what to expect. At first she seemed to plod along as a duty or "right of passage"in the abstract world of preparing for college. What we later witnessed in the hands of Michael's casual yet BRILLIANT tutoring style was the astute unfolding of a flower - absorbing the true essence of the art of test taking. She not only fully understood and executed his principles, she felt CONFIDENT approaching any test. The proof of Michael's skills with teens is seen in Hannah's near perfect test scores. We are more than grateful! Thank you Michael!
My experience with Michael was a very enjoyable one. I started off as an unconfident test taker, but through the Mr. Test Prep process I gained a lot of confidence. Michael taught me the self determination I needed to succeed in the SAT/ACT preparation process.
Sacred Heart Prep '11, Atherton
Michael Romano was more than I ever could have imagined in an SAT tutor. I’ve been to a couple of the other SAT prep places, and the most glaring difference is that Michael made it fun. It was never a pain to go over to his house and learn, but it was something you looked forward to in you day. He would read your essays, and never sound like he was putting you down, but give you a million ways to improve them. You took practice tests of The SAT/ACT, but it wasn’t uncommon for him to burst into song, or say something funny. It was an atmosphere that was fun to learn in, taught you to concentrate through anything, and made test taking much easier than I ever thought it could be. And that information translated into the rest of my schooling. I found myself automatically using his test-taking techniques in all my classes, and my grades continued to go up. My junior year was my best academic year and I would give Michael a lot of credit for that. I scored really really well on the SAT test, and even in my worst subject (math). Michael had made a test that was very scary, and turned it into something doable. I took a year off after high school, and then got into every college (that I’ve heard from so far) with Merit scholarships, and into their honors programs. After my experience with Michael as a tutor we sent my younger brother to him, and will send my younger sister. If I know anyone is looking for an SAT tutor I recommend Michael immediately - without question. Thank you Michael for not only improving my SAT skills, but also for improving my school skills in general."
Henry M. Gunn High School '08, Palo Alto
University of Vermont '13
Michael Romano has made a huge difference in the lives of my four high school students. We tried other tutors before a college counselor recommended Michael, and we are so happy we found him. The three who have been through college admissions testing were able to raise their scores significantly, while also significantly reducing their stress levels. The youngest has just started working with Michael and it's easy to see already how much his relaxed attitude and reassurance have helped her prepare, and enabled her to approach the tests with confidence, a better sense of strategy, and an updated knowledge of subject material and writing skills. Thank you Michael for all the help you've given our family.
My experience with Michael was great. He gave me the tools to prepare for the SAT test and the confidence to dream big. After working with Mr. Test Prep, I scored 300 points higher on my second testing for the SAT. Michael helped me with creating a strong mindset and pure determination for the SAT and ACT tests.
Archbishop Mitty, San Jose '11
University of Oreogon '15
Doing test prep with Michael is so much more than just "studying." From day one, he makes sure that you feel comfortable and relaxed in your environment. He doesn't talk to you like you're just another student—his personality is so amicable that it's hard not to enjoy yourself when you're in his presence; you feel like you're talking with a friend rather than a tutor. Michael really helps you understand all of the dos and don'ts of test prep, without stressing you out or adding to your workload. And to get down to the nitty-gritty, Michael's tutoring raised my SAT test score by over 200 points, which is just the icing on the cake of a stellar test prep experience.
Our daughter found Michael’s test prep process stress free. His flexible approach enabled her to prepare for testing and still maintain her very full schedule of activities. Most importantly, she felt confident and prepared when she took her first standardized test. The work with Michael paid off in spades when she received her scores; for she had done so well that she was able to declare that her SAT/ACT testing was over. Working with Michael, she significantly raised her scores from the PSAT test. Michael sets a high bar for his students and works with them to surpass it.
Parent of Menlo School '12 Student, Palo Alto
Mike Romano is a fantastic SAT/ACT test tutor.....when my son David came to Mike, he had a history of good grades but mediocre performance on standardized testing......Mike succeeded in getting David to be comfortable in coping with the pressure of taking a standardized test and walk into the test room with confidence. David dramatically improved his ACT test score from the 91st percentile to the 96th percentile, and his Reading score from 25 (75th percentile) to 35 (99th percentile). The improvement in David's test scores most likely made the difference in his getting accepted to Stanford and the University of Michigan. While you can say that college admissions is the ultimate bottom line, David also enjoyed working with Mike, and the test taking skills he learned, as well as the accompanying confidence he developed, will undoubtedly serve him well in college. Thanks Mike!
Parent of Woodside Priory '11, Portola Valley
Stanford '15 Student
Michael Romano was the difference for me between a good and an outstanding SAT test score. His two hour sessions give plenty of time for practice tests, one-on-one review of the tests, and reflection on the material. He allows students to work in a very comfortable environment, which made the SAT much less stressful for me. When reviewing SAT practice tests with his students, Michael's amazing human skills make you not just feel like you should do better, but also want to do better. He gave me the time, interest, and tools to find areas where I was less proficient, and make myself better. I'm glad to have known Michael Romano, he is a helpful and uplifting person.
Woodside High '09
UC Berkeley '11
"We had first hand experience of Michael's successful tutoring program. Our daughter was an excellent student (GPA > 4.4) but a poor test taker. With focused tutoring sessions, she was able to increase her total SAT scores by over 600 points. With this gained insight on test taking skills, she did extremely well with her AP classes at school and on the advance placement tests. She entered college last fall with 44 units of credit. Michael clearly shows an interest in his students by getting to know them. He understood our daughter’s academic needs as well as outside interests. He challenged her and at the same time built her confidence - to believe in herself to achieve her goals. She appeared to have very little stress on the real SAT or ACT testing day. Michael was always there for us to answer questions and give us insight into this daunting college process."
Linda and Bob Abramovitz, Belmont
Proud parents of a happy UCLA student
Mr. Test Prep is the best SAT and ACT tutor I have ever had. I've tried a couple different tutors/classes and they did not improve my score whatsoever. I took the SAT two times and my score did not improve at all. But after going to Michael for 2 months, my score jumped 250 points! I was ecstatic when I received news of my improved scores, and I only have Michael Romano to thank for it. Michael is truly in the business for the kids. His only goal is for the student to achieve the highest score possible and he always knows exactly what the student has to work on to improve his or her score. I'm thrilled to have the chance to study with Michael and can't wait to continue working with him.
"My experience with Michael Romano was definitely a surprising enjoyable one. Having been to test preparation classes and programs before I went to Mike, I came into it pretty skeptical. I remember the first car ride over, I had told my mom that I was going to go, but I wasn't going to enjoy it. But once I got to Mike's house I realized how wrong I was. It's the whole environment that really made it such a rewarding experience for me, the way that I was easily able to learn the vocabulary, math, sciences, and test-taking skills necessary to succeed, all because of how Mike approached them. From the moment I met Mike I could tell this was going to be a far different experience then what I had imagined. He's not your run of the mill tutor. He's a funny and easy going guy and stresses the seriousness of the SAT and ACT tests, but doesn't hang it over your head all the time, as other test prep tutors will do. His methods facilitate a stress-free environment where most people, such as myself, really excel. From his program I was not only able to improve my ACT and SAT test scores tremendously so I could go to a great school but I also walked away from it having made a life-long friend. After that first day I started looking forward to my weekly visits to Mike's house and even though I was learning and working hard at each session, it never felt like work to me. I enjoyed it every step of the way and I only hoped, afterwards, that other high schoolers could have a similar experience to mine. My test taking skills were fine-tuned by this program which certainly helped for the SAT and ACT test but have also helped me with collegiate level exams. With Michael Romano's test-preparation program I was able to look up at the intimidating mountain that is the "SAT" and not only conquer it but also look at other challenges with a similar mindset, giving me the ability and the confidence necessary to overcome any and all of them. If nothing else, this confidence will stick with me for the rest of my life: I know I can succeed. Thanks Mike, you're truly making a difference."
Sacred Heart Preparatory, Atherton '08
Lehigh University '12
"Michael Romano not only added valuable skills to our sons' standardized testing acumen but an unexpected surprise was that he grew into a friend and mentor during their last three years of high school. As adolescents develop they often need that concerned adult, separate from their parents, from whom to seek advice and guidance especially during their high school years. Michael was flexible with their schedules, direct and helpful with the strength and weaknesses of their skills, and a wise communicator with us when necessary. The college pre-testing process need not be a stressful endeavor and Michael ensures that to be the case. We have recommended many students to his services and have always received words of positive acknowledgment."
"Michael helped my oldest son raise his score from PSAT to SAT by almost 600 points - and he is now a sophomore at Harvard. I liked Michael's style and approach so much that I asked him to take on my second son as well. His scores have risen 650 points so far plus Michael plays 1:1 basketball with my son who is a basketball fanatic. Now, if Michael could help my son so that he'd never argue with me again - that'd be even better :)."
Michael was a phenomenal teacher, always positive and giving me constructive cues to work on and to help me improve. His methods are effective and efficient and he is full of determination to make you better and to help you reach your goal. I improved significantly both on the regular SAT and on the SAT II test (Math). He not only helped me to improve my skills, but also my mental approach. He was very supportive and his confidence in me helped me perform better each time. He is very relaxed and knowledgeable. The personal contact he has with you as a student is warm and easy. He is serious and pushes you to be more proactive and focused on succeeding. Michael and I had a special routine, almost like a” handshake”. Every time I came in whether it was for a lesson or to take a full test in his private “testing room” we started and ended with a discrete “yell to let go”, our word was HEAVENLYYYY! Each time we said it we both laughed and coming in to work with a smile always made it easier and helped me loosen up. He helped me prepare for three official tests and each time I felt like he supported me right till the point when I entered the testing room. Early in the morning after signing in at the test center he made me call him before entering the room. Half asleep in the middle of a yawn, he answered the phone and made me give him a loud HEAVENLY to relax before the test. My overall experience studying for the regular SAT was a lot more pleasant than I thought it would be. I improved by 320 points for the regular SAT and 70 points for the SAT II test (Math). After just a few months of work I left not only with a higher SAT score but also with an unexpected friendship.
Gunn High School , Palo Alto '10
Creighton University '14
"Hey Michael! Just to let you know, I recommended you to my entire sophomore US Govt class last semester ( I taught at PALY). Here goes my testimonial:
SAT tutoring with Michael was extremely helpful in improving my SAT and SAT II test scores. He was not only very knowledgeable, but he made the atmosphere very comfortable and relaxed. He was very personable and funny. I remember picking my brother up from tutoring with Michael and he was shooting hoops with Michael in the front yard. Michael goes up and beyond just being another tutor. He becomes more like a mentor and builds confidence in his students. This knowledge, confidence and support have helped me in the SAT's and in life.
Gunn High School , Palo Alto '04
UC Davis '08
"Fortunately for me, my experience with Michael didn't involve any stories of raised test scores. After my sessions were complete and my head full of vocabulary, math, and practice tests galore I only had to take the SAT test once. He IS that good. Michael Romano was instrumental in helping me achieve my goals coming out of high school and attending a top-tier University like I had always dreamed. Even today, five years removed from my last tutoring session, Michael's fundamental strategies help me conquer midterms and finals each year since I was able to learn how to become a better, more focused test-taker as a result of his mentoring. Sitting where I am now, job in hand and degree just months away, I am very thankful to have had Michael's influence in my life."
W. Douglas Wigley
Sacred Heart Prep. 2005, Atherton
Princeton University 2010
Mr. Test Prep helped me score a 33 on the ACT test the first - and only - time I took it. Michael keeps studying stress-free and in some ways, calming. He not only helped me with my test-taking but also gave me tips for applying to college and managing school in general. Mr. Test Prep has a great personality, gave me great advice, and if your lucky, might even serenade you with an awesome cover of a Lady Gaga song on the piano.
Gunn High School '2, Palo Alto
"Most teenagers wouldn't put preparing for the SAT or ACT tests high on their list of favorite activities. Both our daughters worked with Michael and both described him to their friends as "the coolest tutor EVER". Michael managed to coach our kids to their best levels of performance on the tests and also served as strategist, mentor and friend. They actually looked forward to their sessions with Michael and we couldn't be more pleased with the results. We highly and unreservedly recommend Michael!
"Working with Michael was tremendously helpful for my SAT and ACT test scores. His tutoring methods of preparing allowed me to be confident and relaxed going in to tests, ensuring my best performance. The learning environment he maintained was the perfect balance between focus and fun. Not only that, it was evident that Michael took interest in the success of every one of his students. I thoroughly enjoyed my time working with him and the amazing results that came from it."
Sacred Heart Prep '10, Atherton
"I thoroughly enjoyed my experience with Michael. My preparation for the SAT was special in that I looked forward to tutoring every week. I am not sure there are many kids who feel that their tutoring is a highlight of their high school career, but I can honestly say that Michael made my experience a memorable one. He drastically improved my test scores, but more importantly he helped me gain perspective and confidence in regard to the SAT. The day I walked in to take the SAT I felt more prepared and relaxed than any kid in the room, and this was in large part due to Michael's tutoring and life advice. I highly encourage any students that are looking for a tutor to consider Michael, as he will not only increase your SAT score, but also help you mature as a young adult."
Menlo High School '09
"Not only did Michael help my daughter solidify her grasp of the math portion of the SAT, but he also helped her to manage the anxiety she felt about the whole process. Michael's mellowness is a great antidote to the general frenzy of college prep."
"My time with Michael was incredibly well spent considering the time crunch and pressure of the months leading up to the SAT and ACT tests. He really took me step by step through the processes of reviewing test material, becoming a time-conscious test taker, and just a having a better understanding of the test and its workings. My scores improved dramatically and incredibly fast."
Menlo School '10, Atherton
Wake Forest '14
"I had a fantastic experience preparing for the SAT with Mike. I went from initial scores in the low 1300s to a 1440 on my official test. That score really stood out in my college application, and I got into USC in a very competitive year. I actually looked forward to our sessions every week. He had a way of making them tailor fit to my personality and a lot of fun. He not only gave me all the tools I needed to ace the material confidently, but he took the time and interest to prepare me for life in college and beyond with great stories and advice. When I teach music to students now I often find myself drawing upon Mike's approach in order to create a similar kind of environment for my students."
Henry M. Gunn High School '01, Palo Alto
"Two of my three children took the preparation for the SATs with Michael Romano. We were elated that each of their scores increased by 500 points and they had forms of dyslexia. They were well prepared and Michael developed a great relationship with each of them and their special needs. "
Dr. Ivy Fisher Weiner
"Michael is a genius but doesn't let it show. He runs a smooth, laid-back test prep center and builds friendships with his students, but makes his lessons effective and helpful. He knows the tests inside and out, and coaches his students not only on how to take the tests, but how to manage time, the mentality behind doing well, and an excitement to succeed."
Gunn High School '08, Palo Alto
UC Berkeley '12
"My time spent with Mr. Romano really helped improve my test taking abilities as well as my study habits. He put in extra time and effort to make sure we understood what it is we did incorrectly and helped us improve upon it. I also loved the atmosphere of the work room and his garden when we worked on problems, it for some reason just relaxed me and made the test taking seem a lot easier."
Mt. View '10
University of Oregon '14
"I started working with Michael Romano when I was coming off my freshman year in High School. As someone who has always struggled with multiple-choice exams, I was eager to work with Michael. Early Saturday mornings and late nights after school became a time for me to learn how to understand, strategize, and conquer the SAT and SAT II tests. After a year of coaching, my SAT test scores were significantly higher. More importantly, I finally had confidence in my own ability to succeed. Michael taught me how to really take the test... not let the test take me! Michael was the first to teach me that no matter what; my own hard work will get me where I want to be in the world :)"
Castilleja School 2008, Palo Alto
Pepperdine University 2012
"Michael changed the entire college testing process for my son. My son went from dreading to study to being motivated and excited about the process and studying. Our son's scores skyrocketed and he was very engaged in deciding what colleges he was interested in. Michael changed Kev's life and we're thrilled with the results! "
Barbara Philips, Woodside, CA
"Michael Romano exceeded high expectations. He is both a first-class test tutoring maestro and a splendid, supportive person to work with and learn from. His lessons, while extremely useful for the SAT test and the like, extend far beyond any one Standardized test."
Menlo School, Atherton '08
"I truly enjoyed my afternoons at Michael's house. His individualized tutoring approach to working through the SAT by sections helped me conquer it by eliminating how intimidating it appears as a 3 and a half hour test. But more than that, it is Michael's unique attitude that truly helps one feel comfortable with taking the SAT. He is friendly and open to every person in such a genuine way. I will always remember Michael playing the piano and singing as I was taking test sections."
Gunn High School '09, Palo Alto
Univ. of Michigan '13
"The time that I spent with Michael working on my SAT was vastly helpful to my admission into the University of California at Merced. Without his help there is no way that I would have been nearly as successful as I was. On the SAT2 test that I took for Biology Michael helped me attain a score of 720! Although my SAT score was not stellar (1560) it would have been FAR worse if Michael had not helped me. The environment where we practice was calming and quiet, and Michael’s laid-back personality made me feel comfortable and I think that helped me exponentially in achieving my scores and test-taking strategies!"
Mountain View High School '08
University of California at Merced '12
"Our daughter's score went up 240 points on the SAT exam following your test preparation, practice, and strategy sessions. She is currently a sophomore majoring in neuroscience and psychology at McGill University in Montreal.
John M ., Mountain View
"Michael was fantastic to work with, and with his help I scored 2150, way higher than I would have thought possible! Michael is the smartest surfer dude I know. He is relaxed, focused, and manages time exceptionally, to the point where everyone else's schedules seem to revolve around him. Whether explaining trigonometry or showing me a jazzy piece of music he wrote on the piano Michael is proud and confident in his work. He was interested in my life and opened up about some of the things he struggles with, treating me with respect as a friend he was working with, instead of a subordinate he was teaching down to. Instead of coming down to my level, as tutors often do, he simply brought me up to his.
Michael is one of those people who you look at and think they've got it all figured out. I have so much respect for how he lives his life! He is one of my role models."
Henry M. Gunn '10, Palo Alto
Prescott College '14
"Michael Romano absolutely helped raise my SAT test scores--I wouldn't have gotten into the college of my dreams without his help. I would recommend him to anyone who needs a boost of confidence and key test taking strategies."
Pinewood High School, Los Altos Hills '08
Claremont McKenna College '12
"I highly recommend Michael Romano for teaching students to prepare for their SAT's. My stepson went to him before he took his SAT's as a junior and was able to raise his score by 350 points between the first and second test. I am happy to report that he was accepted to several colleges and is now a sophomore at the University of California at Merced. My daughter and second stepson, both high school juniors, are currently tutoring with him, and I am confident that they will also see positive results. Michael has a wonderful rapport and ability to connect with his students, and I am happy to have him working with members of my family."
"My SAT test scores probably improved 300 points with Michael's help. As much as I learned about mastering standardized test nuances that summer, I learned a great deal more from the time spent hanging out with Michael in his backyard, discussing sports, girls, and anything else we could come up with on any given Sunday afternoon. He also went out of his way to help me with my college applications, and was beyond supportive throughout the entire process. It’s hard for me to believe I'd be at Penn without him."
Sacred Heart Prep 09, Atherton
"My experience with Michael Romano, a.k.a. RomTown, was incredible. I came into the test taking months nervous and annoyed that I would have put countless hours into studying for the dreaded three letter tests, the SAT and the ACT tests. But Michael made the process completely painless. Not only was he very knowledgeable of the material on the test, he was also able to give me valuable test taking tips that surely helped me to succeed and dramatically raise my score from what was predicted by the PSAT test. Michael made the process actually fun for me because during some sessions, he would play piano or sing. I always listen to music while doing homework, and his music actually relaxed me, and made me enjoy the sessions even more. In essence, Michael made studying for the SAT and ACT tests fun. And then there was the experience outside of studying. We would frequently find ourselves taking a break from studying and talking about anything from religion to sports teams. We even played basketball after a session. My name is Ben Dearborn, and I attribute my success on the SAT and ACT tests that have allowed me to attend Princeton University this fall to the fabulous work of Michael Romano."
Sacred Heart '10, Atherton
I work as an independent college admissions consultant and many parents and students have raved to me about Michael Romano's excellent test prep skills over the years. It was not, however, until my college bound daughter chose to work with Michael that I got to see his wizardry in action! His knowledge of the testing process is tops and he is a dynamic teacher of material that in the wrong hands could really frustrate even the best student. What sets Michael apart, though, is his intuitive approach to providing each student with what they need in particular to test both successfully and with confidence. His warmth and sense of humor make him a fun person for kids to know. I, now, refer him to all of my students."
College Admissions Consultant
Former Admissions Director at Stanford
"Michael Romano gave me the foundation to approach the SATs with confidence. He aided my development in multiple academic fields and introduced testing strategies that I was otherwise not exposed to within a learning institution - strategies that have kept me well prepared for my academic pursuits."
Palo Alto High School 2007
University of California, San Diego 2011
"Michael, you did a terrific job helping Alex prepare for his SATs. He felt confident in his test sessions and prepared to handle the material. There were no surprises on test days. The SATs don't have to by mysterious and stressful. It's a great life lesson that preparation makes for a better outcome. Thanks for all the help."
"My name is Landon Yamaoka and I was fortunate enough to have found Mike through my parents friends. Not sure how it came to be but I know that his help definitely got me through the SAT. I have major learning disabilities, and studying and focusing on subjects that can be left to interpretation are not strong subjects for myself. (Chem., bio, geometry, algebra 2, English) Mike was very patient with me and would push me just enough to keep me learning and motivated but not to the point where I would just want to give up. I graduated from Los Altos High School in 2000, and attended the University of Arizona and graduated from a top Anthropology school in 2005. (I maybe wrong but it might have been ranked 5th in the nation) Mike was a great person to take his time to assist a student with major learning deficiencies, and not just letting me do what I wanted which would have been to NOT study. Thanks to his help I have found a career path and actually I have helped teach low to high-risk youth life skills, and now help developmentally disabled adults with life skills. Thanks for doing what you do Mike!"
Los Altos High '05
Univ. of Arizona'09
"Michael tutored me over the summer and up until the October SAT test in a way that no other tutor offered. While most would come to my house or I'd have to go to a class, Michael had all his students come during the day and study for 2 hours in a place with no distractions, which I found extremely helpful! Then, most days there was little if no homework. Such a system allowed me to fully focus on my tutoring days, contributing to the boost in my test scores."
Woodside Priory, Portola Valley '10
Claremont Mckenna '14
"Going to study with Michael was not only a great learning experience, but was also fun too. I saw improvement almost instantly in the sections I needed help with most, and it didn't even feel like I did much work. He explained everything very clearly to me, and answered all the questions I threw at him. His personal approach makes each session more enjoyable and helps me work as hard as I can. Michael's knowledge of the SAT test is one of a kind, and I know that by learning from him my scores raised faster than any other method."
Gunn High School '10, Palo Alto
"I don't know if you even want to use this considering what college I will be attending but here it goes...Alternate first line: "Although Michael has poor taste in college (Duke) he was still a great SAT tutor. My experience with Michael was enjoyable and extremely useful. Michael made Sat and Act practice tests tolerable and always kept a light mood. He had many great pointers and let me in on some key secrets to the SAT. He not only prepped me for the SAT test but also taught me many things that are helpful on all standardized tests. After a couple of months of working with Michael my score went up 250pts which really helped me get into my number one college choice."
Menlo School, Atherton '10
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill '14
GO TAR HEELS!!!
"Michael was very helpful. He provided great feedback on my essays and made the whole experience of studying for the SAT's fun. He also provided me with the study skills required for future tests such as the GRE. I would recommend him to anyone who is looking for a pain-free way to improve his or her score on the SAT's."
Palo Alto High School '07
Santa Clara University '11
"Test Prep with Michael Romano is a delightful experience. I remember my first time attending Michael’s. I was convinced it would be a boring 2-hour session of algebra and sentence structure; however, I was pleasantly surprised to find out that test prep with Michael Romano was a bit unconventional. Nothing helps me concentrate like Michael's soothing voice accompanied by his delicate playing of the piano. Michael's business strategy is simple, yet effective; create an atmosphere that students enjoy so they are encouraged to return. "Mr. Test Prep" does so through his casual attire (usually sweatpants, high socks with flip flop over the socks, and shirt covered with crumbs from his constant snacking). Also, Michael engages in playful basketball games with students. Overall, Michael is a fun-loving guy who gets the job done."
Sacred Heart, Atherton '10
Pitzer College '14
Michael Romano not only came through as a SAT tutor but as a mentor. His tutoring style helped me improve my SAT score as well as think differently about studying techniques. Michael always had anecdotes for life and advice if anyone asked; he shared every bit of his intelligent demeanor with each of his pupils (several of them are good friends of mine and share the same sentiments). The knowledge Michael gave me will stick with me far past my formal education and I am very grateful for that."
Gunn High School 2008, Palo Alto
University of Southern California 2012
Mike Romano has tutored both of my sons, including preparation for the ACT test. They actually liked to go to Mike's. They got what they needed, and didn't have any stress hanging over them when they completed each session. But it is the results that count. My elder son is happy at Berkeley, his acceptance definitely helped by the 120 point increase in his overall SAT score after working with Mike. My younger son's scores are not back yet, but he came out of last Saturday's testing smiling ear to ear. He was so well prepared, thanks to Mike.
"Because I worked with Michael is the reason I got into my first choice college. I had no clue how to even start an SAT before I started meeting him regularly. I found each tutoring session extremely productive and mellow, making the learning process even easier for me. I am grateful for all he has taught me."
Mountain View High School '09
George Washington University '13
"Studying with Michael was the smartest decision I made in preparing for my SATs. His system and teaching style was just so laid-back, relaxed, helpful, and enjoyable. I would drive over to his house after school, be greeted with a friendly conversation, and then get to work. When he saw that I didn't understand a concept, Michael took his time to ensure that I would eventually become a master. The overall cool and friendly atmosphere of Michael's garage is proof that he knows how to connect with his students. This results in a very productive learning environment. Thanks a ton Michael!'
Los Altos High School '09
University of Oregon '13
"Michael was a great tutor and still continues to be a good friend, even after 3 years. He tutored myself, my brother, and a hefty collection of close friends. Even after all this time has passed and I have moved on to the next stage of my life, our relationship has persisted such that I still stop by when I'm home to say hi with my friends. Being tutored by Michael was not purely about higher scores on standardized test (although my 34 on the ACT test might argue differently). Its also about having a personal relationship with your tutor such that even years later you stay in contact. This isn't some large company where you get a new tutor each time; this is an experience with one of the most friendly, social, professional and helpful SAT tutors in the business. "
Sacred Heart '08, Palo Alto
"Michael did a great job helping me prepare for the SAT. His experience preparing students for the SAT test helped me fine-tune my approach to the SAT and improve my score."
Palo Alto High School 2005
Pomona College 2009
"Michael Romano was a much-needed help during the years before I took the SAT. The combination of family expectation of a high minimum test score with the concurrent necessity of maintaining a GPA & extracurricular schedule conducive to elite college admission was tremendously stressful for me. I didn't just need a great SAT tutor...I also needed someone to help put the stress into perspective for me. Mike served that important dual-role for me. He was a focused mentor whose consistency and teaching style made learning the material easier & more enjoyable than learning typically was for me in high school, and my test results eventually reflected this. Beyond that, however, his easygoing & friendly personality made the weekly trips fun...we became real-life friends outside of SAT test preparation. My experience with him actually instilled in me a calm & confidence that I have carried since, and that truly has helped me become successful in whatever I have done. He's worth it."
Menlo Atherton '00
Santa Clara University '04
"Michael was an amazing help to my SAT scores and me. Not only did he help me reach my potential, he was fun and made the process enjoyable at each turn. Michael gave me an unparalleled work ethic and sense of confidence that has affected me far beyond my test prep, and I am truly lucky to have worked with him."
Palo Alto High School '09
Williams College '13
"After going through several different SAT prep courses and instructors, it was pretty clear that Michael was a notch above. With the personal attention and instruction at his house, I was able to get a lot more comfortable with the test and it paid off in the end. The experiences that I had working with Michael were not limited to improving my test taking abilities and discussing everything from sports to politics made the experience a lot more enjoyable. I don't think my experiences with Michael are typical of any other SAT tutor but I do think they can be expected for anyone who decides to work with the great Michael Romano."
Menlo School 2008, Atherton
Princeton University 2012
"Michael Romano is a living legend. The man was not just an SAT tutor. He was a father, brother, friend, psychologist, music instructor, and life mentor. Michael taught me things about life that no high school or college education could teach me. He taught me how to be a good person. How to respect others and how to grab the attention of a girl I would like to date. My parents spent a lot of money on all the "tutor sessions" we had together, but I am absolutely positive that all that money was well spent. He would say to me things that would only come to light years down the road.
The most important thing... he gave me a disc with love songs he recorded back in the late 90's. I still play that CD. Thanks for everything."
Henry M. Gunn '01, Palo Alto
Lt. in the Air Force 2003-2009
"Michael Romano made preparing for the SAT an enjoyable and satisfying experience. He was able to effectively transfer his wealth of knowledge to me in a way that no other teacher could have done. I would recommend his test prep course to anyone."
"Michael helped me improve my standardized test scores by... (a) dramatically strengthening my vocabulary (b) guiding me through the bests approach for every type of problem (c) helping me perform at maximum efficiency to achieve my highest potential (d) increasing my confidence (e) all of the above. While that definitely flirts with the line between cute and incredibly annoying, in all honesty, Michael helped me by supporting me through the college application process that has increasingly become one of the greatest source of stress in the lives of high school kids. Michael is a great friend, hilarious, and undoubtedly an extremely valuable source for testing taking knowledge and counseling."
Menlo School, Atherton ’09
"I feared the SAT like the plague. I was naturally intuitive, but was not a particularly gifted test taker. I had tried multiple SAT tutors and practice tests, and was seriously concerned for how college admissions offices were going to react to my score. A family friend recommended Michael to me, and it was the greatest route I could have taken to prepare for the test. He was clearly in high demand considering that every time I went to study with him I saw multiple peers I recognized. Despite being busy managing the constant array of students, Michael still took the time to reach out. We were both musicians and he consistently encouraged pursuing that passion. He even let me come over and use his recording equipment to lay down some songs on one occasion. That was significant to me because despite the fact that all his students were coming to study for an exam that demanded conformity, Michael persistently encouraged creativity and dreaming far beyond just academics."
Menlo Atherton '04
Gordon College '08
"Michael was the best tutor I have ever had. I went from a very average score to a perfect score on verbal thanks to him! I wouldn't hesitate to recommend him to anyone who wants to see just how well they can really do on the SAT."
Mtn View HS, '98
Duke Univ, '02
"I started driving down to Palo Alto to see Michael my senior year of high school. Usually on the weekends, Michael would tutor groups of students prepare for all sorts of college preparatory exams. Specifically, I wanted to improve all the scores in my previous attempts at taking the SAT. Michael's technique and approach is very unique. After taking a series of practice tests, each student meets with Michael one-on-one to go over the answers. His positive feedback helps the students learn from their mistakes, but his personality motivates the students to perform well and come back for more help. After working with Michael for a few months, I increased my reading score by over 100 points. It was my weakest score on the SAT, but my progress didn't stop there. The time I spent with Michael paid off, and I saw a dramatic increase in my writing score and my math score as well. He also helped me prepare for my SATII test in math. I scored a perfect 800. I don't think I could have done this without Michael's help. His method is proven to work well, and his students, much like myself, look back on the whole experience with fond memories. I would recommend Michael Romano to any high school student who wants to do well on their college placement exams."
Menlo School, Atherton 2007
United States Military Academy 2011
"Michael prepared me for the SAT and SAT IIs for roughly a year. He approached the difficult task of tutoring me with both focus and energy making the experience effective and enjoyable. My SAT improved 300 points and my SAT II tests went from lackluster to near perfect. Despite the dreary subject matter (standardized testing is never fun), Michael motivated me to work as hard as I could in order to achieve. While no teenager would like to spend their free time preparing for the SATs, Michael certainly made the task more fun than I could have ever imagined."
Woodside High 2008
"Michael Romano is more than just a tutor. He is a coach. Like any good coach, he adapts his process to fit the needs of each student he works with. He is able to detect areas that need work for a student early on, and then create a program that will be most beneficial for that specific individual. I have seen first hand how much his help can make a difference!"
Palo Alto High School , 1999
Vanderbilt University, 2005
Cornell Law School, 2010
Mike, I know it has been a while, but I wanted to touch base and thank you for your tutoring help on the SA testT. There is no way in a million years my score could have improved that much without your help. Thanks a bunch for helping me get into an awesome school.
Gunn High School 2005, Palo Alto
University of Florida 2009