Alex Smith

Cambridge, MA


  • Harvard (Ph.D. student)

Alex distinctly remembers the palpable excitement he felt as he drove to take the SAT on a sunny Saturday morning during high school. At the time, he didn’t fully grasp exactly how uncommon his affection for the SAT—and standardized tests in general—was. Not surprisingly, it was easy for him to fall head over heels for the GRE.

Prior to returning to graduate school, Alex built his pedagogical prowess for five years, teaching 1st, 4th, 5th, and 6th grade in Houston, Texas. In the process, he learned the obvious, that students cannot excel on standardized tests without true mastery of the content. Tricks and techniques only get you so far.

Since leaving his own classroom, Alex spent two years coaching rookie teachers and one year developing performance management systems for a national education non-profit. He completed a doctorate at Harvard and has been working in international education since.

When not teaching or studying, Alex loves to spend time with his lovely wife and adorable son and daughter. He has spoken to his children only in Spanish since birth so that they will grow up bilingual. Alex is also a fanatical pumpkin-carver and an aspiring cyclist. (He biked across the state of Oklahoma last summer.)

There are few things Alex likes more than helping a student realize his/her full potential on a high-stakes standardized exam.

What students are saying

“Alex is kind and seems to genuinely care about the success of students.”

What students are saying

“Knows the material well, and works to instill better strategies for all test takers. He is very friendly and knowledgeable.”

What students are saying

“Very approachable. Very strong at taking convoluted material and simplifying it.”