What is the PSAT?
The Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) is a standardized test managed by the College Board and cosponsored by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) in the United States. It is a precursor to the SAT. Roughly 3.5 million students take the PSAT/NMSQT each year. In 2013, 1.59 million high school sophomores and 1.55 million high school juniors undertook the PSAT. Younger pupils are also entitled to take the test. The scores from the PSAT/NMSQT are used to govern fitness and qualification for the National Merit Scholarship Program.
Many students find that using test preparations books help to improve their scores.
|Reading||47||60 minutes||Reading and vocabulary in context|
|Writing||44||35 minutes||Grammar and usage|
|Math - Calculator||31||45 minutes||Heart of algebra, problem solving & data analysis, passport to advanced math, additional topics|
|Math - No Calculator||17||25 minutes||Heart of algebra, problem solving & data analysis, passport to advanced math, additional topics|
PSAT Scoring Structure
Pupils register for the exam through high schools which are members of the College Board. The exam is comprised of four segments: two Math Sections, Critical Reading, and Writing Skills, and takes 2 hours and 45 minutes to complete.
The PSAT altered its setup and content in Fall 2015, to imitate the new SAT. The Reading and Writing Sections are combined into one section score, and the Math portion now comprises a section in which usage of calculators is not allowed. The scores for each segment range from 160- 760, adding up to a maximum score of 1520. Yet the National Merit Scholarship Corporation takes each segment score, scored on a scale of 8-38, sums it and then doubles that sum to devise the Selection Index, ranging from 48-228.
The PSAT is offered one time a year in the United States; usually in October. The next testing date for the PSAT/NMSQT is Oct. 11, 2017. Other options are Saturday, Oct.14 and Wednesday, Oct. 25. Testing is to be completed at your local high school.
If you have a recognized disability, you may be qualified for accommodations when you take the PSAT/NMSQT. Some obtainable accommodations are extended time, extra and extended breaks, and reading and seeing adjustments (for example, large-type or Braille test books).
Accommodations must be agreed by the College Board’s Services for Students with Disabilities for pupils taking the PSAT/NMSQT.