Understanding the PSAT

Spencer Hancock, Sports Section Editor

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The PSAT is an important test for high schoolers to take and one that can be crucial for college admittance. Many kids don’t quite understand the importance of the PSAT, but doing well on the PSAT could save you lots of work in the future.

The PSAT is similar to the SAT but it has a few key differences. First of all, the PSAT is only for 10th and 11th graders to take and it is supposed to be the first exposure of SAT-style testing for the students. The PSAT questions are made to be very similar to the SAT questions but slightly less advanced. It also contains the same three sections as the SAT: Math, Reading, and Writing and Language.

One big difference between the tests is the overall score range between them. The PSAT is out of a less total amount of points because it is supposed to be easier. It ranges from 320 to 1520 while the actual SAT ranges from 400 to 1600.

Preparing for the PSAT can often be stressful to the students involved because it can have such a big impact on their future. One student Aine Fitzgerald said, “the PSAT is so hard to comprehend. So many kids take it.”  The competition and comparison with other students also leads to disappointment and stress in students.

In the end PSAT still reaps grand benefits for those who do well on it. For those who do well they will become National Merit Scholars and could potentially receive very prestigious scholarships and acceptance to prestigious universities. 

If you are thinking about taking the PSAT make sure you get studying. It’s a hard test but it will be worth it for you to take. It may be stressful but the benefits outweigh the costs; it may be worth it.