While Barron’s shine in SAT prep, Princeton books are better for GMAT, AP tests and ACTs because of better practice tests where you learn by doing.
When prepping for the most crucial tests of your life, such as the GMAT, GRE, ACT, SAT, or even the high school exams, it is vital to be cautious and pick the right test prep course material.
Every student hopes to clear the test with the maximum possible grade to acquire a career accentuating certificate or get into one of the top schools of their choice.
While searching for schools, you might wish to make the best of all the plausible help accessible. So, that is when you start digging for the best study materials and books for assistance.
It is likely that during your search for a top test prep company, Princeton and Barron’s usually will rank at the top.
But you may often wonder, is Barron’s or Princeton review better? It is because they both present you with some of the top-rated books full of practice questions, test-taking strategies, and content reviews.
But, the question comes to where you must put your money. Which of the two will give you value for money? Considering the broader factors, Princeton does have an edge over Barrons.
Our team of prolific experts has reviewed the test prep offerings by both of these prestigious companies for every significant higher education exam. Based on their opinion on the two, we present a detailed Barrons vs Princeton Review.
Barron’s Vs. Princeton – Who Scores Where?
|Broad and detailed with special emphasis on memorizing and understanding the study material.
|Crisp with more emphasis on practicing.
|An all-in-one package for SAT, ACT, and PSAT
|Tailored study plan
|Access to a live instructor
Difference Between Barron and Princeton Books – Is Barron’s or Princeton Review Better?
In all honesty, there is no clear answer on what is better because people usually have different preferences for study materials, and it also holds for the books involved in the preparation. For instance, the book you receive from Barron’s and Princeton.
Princeton has multiple good features, such as explanations and practice tests. It can be beneficial when preparing to dive into the study material, ensuring that you have retained all the content.
However, amongst Princeton vs Barrons, the former might not be an ideal pick if you aspire to learn in-depth information because some review sections are not as intensive and do not offer the complete information you seek because you are merely starting.
So, now the question is, what must you look for when selecting the ideal guidebook? Naturally, for making an informed choice, you should consider the features that it is best at.
From Barrons vs Princeton review, the latter shines in the practice paper section. Princeton will provide you with top-notch practice tests that match the test level you are preparing for. It implies that you can shop for the AP, ACT, or SAT prep book, and when you go through the listed test material, you will feel like you are taking it.
Moreover, anytime you pick the wrong answer, you will also get an explanation for where you went wrong. Thus, the Princeton Review will prepare you well and ensure that you retain the information you study. It also proves instrumental in learning why you get the wrong answers, the correct answer, and how you can remember it in the future.
As a student, if you think you can succeed in a test by taking different practice tests, absorbing all the information, and repeating it over, then Princeton Review shall be a better pick. They will provide you with ample related information ensuring you get better with every practice test.
But does that mean that between Princeton vs Barrons, the latter does not have any strengths? That is not true. Barron’s is still a top-notch test prep book as it will provide different benefits. It offers detailed study material that prepares you for the exams.
So, the content in Barron’s is a lot more intensive. Thus, it will make things relatively clearer and easier for you to understand, a vital consideration while in the study phase of the exam preparation. Hence, whether you are prepping for the AP, ACT, or SAT, you will appreciate Barron’s review material.
It is not all. Barron’s also stands out for students seeking a step-by-step approach to answering the questions in the test, regardless of the test you take. So, is Barrons better than Princeton review?
Barron’s can be a superior pick for students getting started with their test preparation. You will feel more confident and comfortable with their study material because their review problems and questions are targeted to specific areas.
However, that does not mean that Barron’s practice tests are no good. They will offer you the needed information and prove helpful but are not as detailed as Princeton.
What is more? Amidst the Barrons vs Princeton review, the former can help you save a little money. We would say that if you seek the areas where Barrons excels, you should opt for them, but if you want intensive test papers, Princeton can be your consideration. It is despite the price difference because that is very nominal.
Comparing Barron’s and Princeton’s books and test prep materials
Barron’s Vs Princeton Review AP Test
Princeton Review and Barron’s cover various AP subjects like Calculus, Chemistry, US History, English Language and Composition, Physics, Biology, etc. We will compare the differences between the books of the two test prep companies for the category.
In both companies, you will find test-taking strategies to approach the MCQs, essay-based and short answer questions. They will also have a detailed content review, full-length practice papers, and bonus content. Thus, on the surface, you may feel as if the two are identical.
Barron’s books are typically superior at content review. They will dive right into the content you seek, keep it straightforward, and list all the vital information and details for memorization. Hence, it is a superior pick for people who learn by reading material and then memorizing it.
Even though Princeton’s AP content is good, it cannot match Barron’s level. But Princeton supersedes in the practice test department. They have some top-notch practice tests, and the variety is appreciable.
Further, Princeton ensures an adequate explanation in the practice tests for an easier understanding. Moreover, the fact that it resembles the actual tests makes it stand out.
In addition, Princeton also offers some extra features with their AP prep books. But it will all come at a price. Hence, Princeton will be relatively more expensive.
However, if you have already purchased the Barron’s, you do not have to be disappointed. If it matches your learning style, you can go ahead with it.
ACT: Barron’s ACT Vs Princeton Review ACT
Upon comparing the Princeton vs Barrons ACT prep, we preferred the latter over the former. Again, both Princeton and Barron have similar coverage and features in their preparatory books, including writing, science, English, reading, and math, and the practice materials and the exam strategies.
However, if we compare the two, strictly based on quantity, Princeton supersedes because their books have two more full-length practice tests. Moreover, they have relatively more online extras, such as drills, flashcards, and exercises.
But quantity is only one part of the evaluation review, and if it is on us alone, we will rank quality over quantity. So, there we find Barron’s material a little more superior. They offer detailed content reviews, which are more comprehensible, and the explanations for the practice problems are also appreciable.
Having said that, we like the Princeton practice tests not for their quantity but for their realism. The content difficulty, length, and explanations in the Princeton questions are better for the ACT exam preparation.
Overall, there is not much difference between the two, but if you like to learn by doing, the Princeton books and practice copies will be better.
Barron’s Vs Princeton Review SAT
After you have decided on taking the SAT exam over ACT (or as students usually do), the next question is which prep company to go with for the books you use for preparation. It is not an easy decision for students, and it was not either for us.
Once we deeply tested and reviewed their seminal SAT prep book, comprising the working practice problems, subject reviews, and their online extras, we decided that Barron’s is a better pick for SAT prep.
Princeton Review and Barron offer good quality and comprehensive content for every SAT subject. So, you will not go wrong with either. Both offer SAT test-taking strategies, several online resources, such as drills and flashcards, several full-length practice tests, and comprehensive subject reviews. But some features place one a little above the other.
Barron typically outshines Princeton in their practice problem explanations and test-taking abilities. SAT is a hard exam with complicated questions and tricky content. However, Barron’s actionable techniques can simplify the whole thing.
The company offers tried and tested strategies that you may have never experienced or heard of before, but they work exceedingly well.
Moreover, their explanations are also superb. You will almost always review missed problems in drills and on practice papers, and Barron’s explanations are unprecedented. Stated clearly, they are easily understandable, analytical, and in-depth.
However, that does not mean that Princeton Review’s SAT books are not a good pick. They are also good, especially in practice test realism and content review quality. Princeton is outstanding in the practice exams and provides top practice opportunities. But we still think Barron holds the upper hand in SAT prep.
Related: SAT Online Preparation Courses
GMAT: Barron’s GMAT Vs Princeton Review GMAT
In GMAT prep, our answer to ‘Is Princeton Review or Barron’s better’ depends on the kind of learner you are. Upon detailed analysis, we discovered that in GMAT prep, Princeton is superior in their practice material, while Barron’s has the upper hand in their test-taking abilities.
It implies that Barron’s is a better pick for students who like to learn by reading and seek solid strategies to attack the different question types. On the contrary, for students who are experimental learners and learn by doing, Princeton will be a superior option.
Let us break it down a little for you.
We love Princeton’s practice papers and their approach to every solution. All of their tests are realism-intensive and resemble the actual GMAT questions you will see in the exam.
In addition, they have more practice papers than Barron’s and the text explanation quality is top-notch. There is a detailed solution, covering the answer choice intensively and discussing why the particular option is correct/incorrect for every problem. This in-depth explanation offers the best learning opportunities for learners.
For Barron, the highlight is the series of step-by-step approaches that they offer for every question. Hence, for every problem type, you will see a detailed roadmap to attack any problem and solve it well. They also give crisp guidance on comprehending the underlying concept in question and the answers that can fetch you top marks.
Moreover, Barron’s targeted review problems are also appreciable. They have also identified eight of the most challenging obstacles students experience and devised a way to tackle these concerns head-on, offering added explanation and practice. It provides a focused repetition and breaks down complex information.
Overall, if you are a student who likes to memorize the practice work and see improvements with every practice test and review section, Princeton can be a superior pick.
Final Verdict – Which Is Better Barron’s or Princeton Review?
We like to conclude that both Princeton and Barron’s Review have their share of pros and cons. So, you must assess your expectations from the book to see the one can best meet your needs.
Investing in both books will not be a bad idea if you have the time and the resources. It can help you extract the best from both these prep books. However, that might not be possible for every student.
So, if you are a student who learns by memorizing and reading the content, Barron’s can be your pick. It offers extensive information that is broad but straightforward.
However, if you are someone who learns by doing, then Princeton Review can be a good pick. Their book is also well-written, but their focus is on maintaining realism across the practice tests.