Scott Arens for the Pioneer Review
My oldest just recently took the PSAT test. I couldn’t image her being too excited taking a morning out of her life and answering a lot of questions assessing her smarts, but at least I’m going to have an idea as to where we stand at getting her admitted into a college of her choice. This is a fee based ($15 for 2017), Standardized Test from the College Board; the CB would be a great topic for a future discussion. The PSAT is short for Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test. Its purpose is twofold, it gives the student a preview and practice for the SAT and although it isn’t going to be used for college admissions, it is used for scoring the NMSQT (acronym for National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test), the second purpose. Institutions will use these scores as a means of recruitment and target potential students with mailings.
The SAT has long been a standard for admissions into college. It was first administered in 1926 and has roots going back to 1899 when it was known as the College Entrance Examination Board (CEEB). In 1993, it morphed into SAT Reasoning Test (or SAT I) from the SAT Subjects Tests (or SAT II). It includes two sections, the Verbal and the Math. The student will be doing a lot of reading to answer 78 questions for the Verbal section. It has three parts and an allotted 75 minutes to complete. The Math portion also has three parts with an allotted time of 75 minutes, but has only 60 questions. Each section is graded from 200 to 800 points. The sum from both parts is the SAT score, 800-1600. The higher the score the better. The test taker can elect to add an essay with the SAT. This can be compared to a usual college writing assignment; the writer composing thoughts from a provided text. With the essay, the institution has the means to determine if the author is ready for tertiary education. Expect to have another 50 minutes to complete the essay. Registration for the SAT is $46 and increases to $60 with the essay (2017-2018).
If you have comments, suggestions, and/or questions please email me at Scott@ArensCP.com. ■