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Tips to do well on the PSAT?

Last year I took the PSAT during my sophomore year and got a 50 on critical reading, 47 on math, and 42 on writing. I would like to qualify for the NMSQT scholarship next and get about a composite score of about 210. Also i have read the princeton review PSAT prep book and that seems to help alot but i would like some more tips i could use. Do you have some tips that could help me do well on the PSAT and maybe qualify for the NMSQT scholarship?

3 Answers

  • F811
    Lv 4
    10 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    I really hate to say this but judging by your scores from sophomore year there is a very slim chance you will qualify for NMS. However if you work extremely hard and are an intelligent person, you could still qualify.

    My biggest advice is to take Advanced Placement/Honors courses at your school if you are not already. Especially in Math and English. These types of classes will teach you study habits, discipline, prepare you for more workload, and help you learn more. They are more difficult classes which will help you with critical thinking, which is what the PSAT and SAT tests.

    Another major thing to do is study. STUDY, STUDY, STUDY! Right now you would make approximately a 1,390 on the real SAT/ 139 on the PSAT. The national average is a 1,500 on the SAT/ 150 on the PSAT (PSAT just omits a zero.) National Merit qualifying scores vary by state, however they are ALWAYS above a 200 on PSAT. Some states require above a 220. I know Texas, for example, had a cut off score of 210 in 2010. They vary each year, but are usually about the same. So, you have some work to do. (Here is a link about the scores:

    It is great that you read Princeton Review, however, that is probably the least helpful of the prep books. I HIGHLY recommend to buy the official CollegeBoard SAT Study Guide. It is a big blue book that comes with 10 practice tests and lots of advice and sample problems. It is $20 and you can usually find it at any store that sells test prep books, and I have even seen it at Target. It is made by the makers of the SAT and has old real SAT tests. This will give you the most accurate material for the real test. Do ALL of the practice tests. I guarentee you will improve at least 50 points in each section (or 5 in PSAT score terms). The most important thing is to do practice tests. I started off with a 1680 on my 1st practice SAT test. I did every practice test in that book (as well as other books and online CD'S) and recieved a 2020 on my SAT last month. So studying is how you will improve the most.

    Lastly, take an SAT course. I took 2 courses and they really help if you need some motivation. The instructors will assign you practice problems, give you tests, and will be there to answer any questions.

    Also, in case you didn't know when you study for the SAT, you are studying for the PSAT as well. They are the same test, except PSAT does not require you to write an essay and does not include Alegra 2. So studying for the SAT will help you on both.

    And.... if you are a minority, there are other types of National Merit Scholarships you can get with slightly lower scores. There is the National Acheivment Scholar for African Americans and the National HIspanics Scholar for Hispanics.I would look into those if you qualify.

    I hope this helped, if you have any other questions check out: . They have forums discussing this.

    Source(s): I am a National Hispanic Scholar.
  • 10 years ago

    Take the AP classes. Also, I would recommend that you go to SAT websites like collegeboard for their practice questions and word lists.

  • 10 years ago

    who cares man just become a mailman you dont need to go to college for that... but if you really want some tips here

    1. Go to bed really late youll need to cram

    2. Dont eat anything beforehand

    3. Dont trust yourself cheat off your neighbor

    4. Stop studying sooo much be chill

    5.follow my advice

    Source(s): a master test taker
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