PSAT administered on Oct. 17


Freshmen, sophomores and juniors prepare to take the PSATs on Wednesday Oct.17. For juniors, their PSAT scores could aid in qualifying them for the National Merit Scholarship, which is partnered with College Board.

To qualify for a National Merit Scholarship a student must be a junior with the qualifying scores in reading, writing, and math. If a junior qualifies for a National Merit Scholarship they have the opportunity to apply for multiple scholarships.

“The PSATs are more important than the SATs, so having these National Merit competitions helps students take it more seriously,” junior Kat Mendoza said.

The PSATs consist of three parts. Two 25 minute critical reading sections, two 25 minute math sections, and one 30 minute writing skill section. The English section consists of sentence completion questions and critical reading questions. The math section consists of multiple choice and grid-in questions. The questions are made up of numbers, operations, algebra, functions, geometry, measurement, data analysis, and statistics. The writing section consists of identifying syntax errors, improving sentences, and improving paragraphs.

“English is going to be the hardest subject because the reading material is difficult to understand,” sophomore Shawn Diggs said.

There are multiple scholarships that students can compete in that require PSAT scores rather than SAT scores. The National Hispanic Recognition Program was established to aid outstanding Hispanic/Latino students with college and maintaining their GPA. The National Scholarship Service was established to identify African American students with outstanding PSAT scores and help them enter two or four year universities and maintain their GPA.

“PSATs are just for the experience and practice for the SATs,” counselor Marcelo Valencia said.