Words: Laila Abu-Ghaida
According to College Board, every year approximately 3.5 million students take the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). The PSAT is mainly targeted for sophomores and juniors due to the fact most students begin to prepare for and take the actual SATs in these years of high school. However, recently at Centennial, freshmen have been added to the list of students required to take the exam.
Many students believe that these tests do not matter, since the scores will not be on their college applications nor will they be reflected on their report cards; while it is true that preparation for PSATs is not as stressed as SATs, doing well does have its benefits.
When juniors take the PSAT/NMSQT, they are automatically screened for the National Merit Scholarship Program, an academic competition for recognition and scholarships. Out of the many juniors who take the PSATs about 16,000 receive scores that qualify them as semifinalists. After being narrowed down, about 8,000 are awarded scholarships.
It is encouraged for students to do their best on these exams and take full advantage of them since they will be getting a preview of skills that are necessary on the SAT. This year, the exam falls on Wednesday, October 19.
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