If you are a high school student with Ivy League aspirations, there are several steps you’ll need to take to qualify for your dream schools. In fact, some of these steps can start as early as late middle school and continue throughout your high school years until it’s time to apply for college.
One of the most well-known college preparation exams is the SAT, but the most Ivy League–prepared students will take many similar tests before they reach this one. One of the tests designed to prepare students for the best possible score on their SAT is the PSAT, or practice SAT.
The PSAT can be an important indicator of how a student will do on their SAT, as it’s structured very similarly and features many of the same types of questions. Additionally, many college applications will consider PSAT scores along with SAT scores, and the PSAT/NMSQT allows students to qualify for a National Merit Scholarship.
Before you can determine what a good PSAT score would be for an Ivy League application, however, it’s important to understand the different types of PSAT tests.
Different PSAT Levels
The various PSAT tests are designed for different settings. For the best possible results on your PSAT/NMSQT and your SAT, each of these tests should be taken in order with plenty of studying.
The PSAT 8/9 is the shortest, easiest version of the PSAT. This test is designed for 8th and 9th graders who want to begin their SAT prep early.
The PSAT 10 is a slightly more advanced version of the PSAT 8/9 and is meant for 10th graders. This test is more similar in content and test-taking time to the PSAT/NMSQT, allowing students to understand what to expect the following year.
The PSAT/NMSQT is the last step before the SAT and is usually taken in the fall of a student’s 11th-grade year. This test is most similar in structure and difficulty to the SAT, though it still takes about 15 minutes less to complete. Additionally, it allows students to achieve a National Merit Scholarship if they score within a certain percentile nationally.
The PSAT 8/9 and PSAT 10 can be essential tools for students to get accustomed to the SAT format and prepare themselves for academic success. However, most college applications will not consider scores from any test before the PSAT/NMSQT.
The highest possible score a student can achieve on the PSAT/NMSQT is 1520. If you score between 1500 and 1520, you will be considered a part of the 1st percentile nationally, which makes you a strong candidate for Ivy League universities. A score of 1450–1500 is still a very impressive score and could lead to a great college acceptance.
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A great PSAT score starts with great test prep. Contact us at Jantzi Test Prep today to get started.