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The Importance of the PSAT

The PSAT is a standardized test that is very similar to the SAT. Considering it tests the same

skills as the SAT, it serves as practice for the actual exam. This standardized test consists of a

sit down for three hours with short breaks in between sections of the exam. The SAT differs in

time as it is 90 minutes longer than the PSAT. The scores from the PSAT will show what

sections of the SAT the student may need extra help on. Khan Academy gives students the opportunity to get help in the areas they need for free. These scores could also give parents clarity as to what the student may need help on and if outside tutoring may be needed. Realizing a student may need extra help is not a sign of weakness, but should be looked at as a chance for improvement.

The PSAT not only serves as practice for the SAT, but can determine if a student is eligible to be a National Merit Scholar. In order to be considered for this scholarship, the student must take the PSAT during their junior year of high school and score above a certain percentile. While pre-registering for the PSAT, if the student were to agree to “let colleges, universities, scholarship programs, and educational opportunity organizations know that you are interested in receiving information about the educational and financial aid opportunities they offer”, some colleges would reach out by sending brochures of their schools, allowing the student to see different options and opportunities each school offers; getting a taste of what they might be looking for in a college.

All things considered, the PSAT should be taken seriously as it can open doors to scholarship

opportunities and serve as a realization for what a student may need assistance in with time to

do well in following exams.

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