The primary purpose of the PSAT is for 11th grade students to have the opportunity to qualify for the NMSQT (www.nationalmerit.org). The National Merit Scholarship is a prestigious award only eligible for current 11th grade students. Please make sure to follow the hyperlink to get more information. 10th grade students are also encouraged to take the PSAT exam to increase familiarity with the content as well as to assess strength and weakness. The PSAT is offered October of every year as stipulated by Collegeboard. Utilizing SNN and email to the student body, the counseling department will announce the date of the PSAT exam and the process to pay for a seat. Seats are limited and offered on a “first come, first served” basis, so please plan accordingly to reserve your student a seat.
Admission committees use either your SAT or ACT scores in conjunction with other college admission factors to determine whether you’re a good fit for their campus. Just how much your scores matter to admissions officers depends on the school but you can be sure that even if your scores aren’t the deciding factor, they are an important piece of the college admission process.
Differences between: SAT vs. ACT
Counselors advise students to take AT LEAST one of the two standardized tests in the spring of 11th grade. It is ideal to complete all of your standardized tests by September of 12th grade to focus on the application process for college. Specific to each college, some choose scores from a specific test date or could opt to SUPERSCORE. Superscoring is the process by which colleges consider your highest section scores across all the dates you took the SAT. Rather than confining your scores to one particular date, these schools will take your highest section scores, forming the highest possible composite score.
Counselors encourage students to take each exam (SAT and ACT) at least one time, and then retake the exam with the higher percentile rank as a way to maximize their chance for admission.
When researching colleges, make sure that you review admission criteria for standardized test requirements and deadlines.
Find out about SAT testing dates, registration, photo ID requirements, SAT essay requirements, how to send scores and more online at www.collegeboard.com
Find out about the ACT testing dates, registration, photo ID requirements, how to send scores and more at www.act.org