10/18/2011 11:27 am ET | Updated Dec 18, 2011

'Tutoring-Industrial Complex' Pushes Student High-Achievement (AUDIO)

As students settle in to the new school year and as mid-semester grades start trickling in, students who are looking for another boost in their academics are foraying into hiring from the booming tutoring industry.

With heightened competition of college admissions among America's high schoolers, the pressure to ace their four years and aim for high marks on the SATs and standardized tests has become an even greater incentive to seek help from professionals. Tutors could sometimes cost up to $800 hourly, according to American Public Media's Marketplace Morning Report.

Marketplace Morning Report chatted with Missy Sullivan, senior editor for Smart Money magazine, about America's "tutoring-industrial complex."

Whereas the U.S. Department of Education has an estimated 600,000 students across the country who are receiving free tutoring for attending schools that haven't reached academic goals, Sullivan notes that tutoring for others isn't just about having kids catch up with the rest of the class, but to be at the top and make sure they're strong across the board.