FAQS UPC

 

What does UPC stand for?

UPC stands for “University Preparatory Course”.


 

What do you do?

We engage bright capable high school students and prepare them for the new SAT, and other entrance exams. We also offer them career, major, and college counseling. Those are fundamentals that high schools, both Lebanese public schools and UNRWA schools, do not provide for.

At the end of this course, we help participants take their SAT exam and apply to universities in Lebanon and abroad. This course usually focuses on entrance exams and the English language.

UPC takes place over the course of two years of one-on-one and group counseling, divided into two modules.


 

What does your course include?

Our course is divided into two modules, which include, but is not limited to:

1. Instruction and structured study

2. Real practice questions from the Official SAT Study Guide

3. Test taking strategies

4. Regular, scored testing

5. Homework given and checked

6. Essay practice

7. Grammar notes for Writing and Language Section

8. A full length proctored test, three and a half hours in length at end of course

9. Weekly study hall

10. Support with submitting your test application


 

Who prepares the students during this program and where?

UPC takes place over the course of two years of one-on-one counseling and group counseling, divided into two modules.

The first module is mostly volunteer-based where teachers put their efforts on a 3-week to 4-week program that takes place in our Debbiyyeh campus and different other locations.

The second SAT module of the UPC is done by professional teachers in different locations in Lebanon.


 

Which age group do you target?

This course is intended for students successfully finishing grade 10th and progressing into grade 11th with high academic standing.


 

Can I apply to this program?

No, students cannot apply on their own to be part of this program. Each year students are being selected to be participants in the course.


 

How do you select students?

Each year we contact UNRWA high schools and some public and private schools to get the list of names of the top students based on their Brevet and grade 10 scores.

Those students are invited to be interviewed by the selection committee. Students are then selected based on their English language proficiency and financial background status.


 

Does being selected for the program mean that I will be getting a scholarship?

No, being selected to be part in the program does not mean a student will be getting a scholarship. Being part of the program does mean, however, that you are a candidate for a scholarship.


 

Does being rejected mean that I am not eligible to apply for the scholarship?

No, if you were not selected to participate in UPC after the interviews, or you were not called in for an interview in the first place, it does not mean you are not eligible to apply for the scholarship program.


 

What do I have to do if I got rejected and I want to apply for the scholarship?

If you did get rejected you can still study SAT on your own, do the exam, apply to universities, and come back to our office when you start grade 12.

You should have acceptances to universities we provide scholarships for, in order to be able to apply for the scholarship program.


 

What documents should I submit?

When you are first invited for an interview, you are required to bring the following documents with you:

1. 2 passport size pictures

2. Copy of your ID

3. Copy of your UNRWA registration card (Palestinian students only)

4. Copy of your grade 9 school transcripts

5. Copy of your grade 10 school transcripts

6. Copy of your official Brevet transcripts

7. Copy of bank account statement (If available)

8. Copy of parents salary pay slip

Students selected for the program should then always keep us updated by sending us any new relevant document they get. Some of these documents are:

1. Copy of your SAT scores (for each exam you take)

2. Copy of your grade 11 school transcripts

3. Copy of your grade 12 school transcripts

4. Copy of your official Bacc II  transcripts

5. Copy of university acceptance letters

6. Copy of university financial aid decision letters

If any missing documents are requested, all students must send them within the deadlines mentioned by us. If more time is needed, students can always ask for an extension. 


 

How do I know if I have any missing documents in my file?

You can either call us or send us an email asking us in case you think there are some documents that you did not submit.

Keep in mind that we do not process students’ applications that have missing documents. Handing in incomplete applications will only jeopardize your chances.


 

If I was rejected, how can I study for the exam?

There are a lot of resources you can use to prepare for the exam. The first thing you have to do is buy the SAT book in order to get acknowledged with the exam, the topics covered, and the different techniques you can use to excel.

You can also visit the official College Board website where you can practice multiple quizzes and try a sample SAT test.

In addition, you can check the Khan Academy website, which will also help you prepare for the exam using its free online practice material.

This website will allow you to practice different exams and quizzes, and analyze your performance, after you create your free account. Moreover, it has useful video explanations to go along with the official questions.


 

Which SAT book do you use? Why?

We have developed our own curriculum to prepare students for the SAT exam. BRIDGE formulated multiple manuals, designed to review and introduce topics in English and Mathematics, in order to guide students and familiarize them with the test.

In addition, we use the College Board official SAT book to prepare the students for the exam. The College Board book is the number one, critical book that any student preparing for the SAT should have in their study arsenal. The book not only provides you with practice tests, but it also explains the test structure, basic strategies, and answer explanation.


 

Do I have to buy the SAT book?

If you got selected to participate in the UPC, we will be handing you a book to study for your first SAT exam.

Students are usually required to pay only a deposit for the book, which they get back when they return the book in perfect condition directly after they do their first SAT.


 

What is the new SAT (started in 2016)?

The redesigned SAT is a paper based exam that tests the knowledge and skills students acquire throughout their years of study at school. The exam is composed of four sections that tests Mathematics, evidence based reading and writing skills. 

Students are given three hours to finish two Mathematics section, one with a calculator and the other without one, one reading section, and one writing and language section. Each of the four sections is graded over 400 points, for a total of 1600 points.

In addition to the four sections, there is a bonus – optional – essay section, for which students are given an extra 50 minutes if they decide to take it. Despite the fact that the essay section is optional, most universities do ask what score students got. The American University of Beirut (AUB) and the Lebanese American University (LAU) are two of those universities, and that is why our students should take the essay section if they are applying to those universities.

The SAT is considered more of a reasoning exam. It tests skills and reasoning abilities, rather than actual knowledge of the topics and the subject matter introduced.


 

Why is it important to take the SAT exam?

The SAT exam is a globally recognized exam that universities use when looking for qualified applicants to admit into their programs.

In Lebanon, the SAT exam encompasses 50% of the candidate’s application. The other 50% of the candidate’s application is their grades from 10th, and 11th grade.


 

What is the difference between the old and the new SAT?

  • Structure and Scoring

The main difference between the old and the new version of the exam is the weight given to the different sections.

The old SAT was composed of 3 main sections, Mathematics, critical reading and writing. Each section was scored over 800, giving the Mathematics section one-third the weight of the total score, which was then 2400, and the English sections – critical reading and writing – two-thirds the weight of the total score.

On the other hand, the new SAT is composed of 4 sections, two Mathematics, evidence based reading, and writing. The two Mathematics sections are scored over 800, giving the Mathematics sections half the weight of the total score, which is now 1600, and the English sections – evidence based reading and writing – half the weight of the total score.

  • Essay Section

In the essay section of the old SAT – which was mandatory - students were introduced with a prompt, and they had to write an argumentative essay handling its main claim. The grade they had got on the essay was then included in the total score of the writing section.

On the other hand, in the essay section of the new SAT – which is now optional - students have to read a passage written by an author who is taking a position on an issue, and they must then analyze how the author has built the argument. Although the grade they get on the essay is not included in the total score of the exam, it is required by some universities, including the American University of Beirut (AUB) and the Lebanese American University (LAU).

  • Mathematics Section

In the new SAT exam there is more emphasis on real situations and word problems with straightforward questions, and fewer questions on geometry and shapes and abstract logic. In addition, basic trigonometry is now on the test, but there are only one or two questions.


 

When can I take the SAT exam?

A test is held on the first Saturday of the months of October, November, December, May and June. An additional test will also be held in August as of 2017.


 

How can I register for the exam?

The easiest way to register for a test is by creating an account online at www.collegeboard.org. This way students reserve their seat and receive their scores online as soon as they are available. Payment is made online by credit card. The registration fee is around a $100 currently.

For students who cannot pay by credit card, they can register for the exam at AMIDEAST. They can still create College Board accounts for other purposes, like viewing their grades, sending their scores online, practicing exams… Find AMIDEAST google maps location.


 

Do I have to send you my SAT scores after I do the exam?

Yes, you have to send us your SAT scores the moment you do the first exam and get your results. Kindly, do not wait for us to ask you for them. You are expected to do your first SAT exam in spring of your grade 11th year.

In case you did the exam more than once, you also have to send us your scores. 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Our Address:

 

Beirut Office

Beirut Building Company

Bldg Makdessi Street - Hamra Beirut

Dibbiyeh Campus

Dibbiyeh main road,

Facing the Chehab Gas Company

 

 

Contact Us

Beirut Office

Phone: +961 1 346 422 | +961 1 745 887

Fax: + 961 1 745 657

Dibbiyeh Campus

Phone: + 961 7 985210 | + 961 7 985 906

Mobile: +961 3 042200

S5 Box

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