What Score Do You Need on the PSAT?

Some scholarships are available that use PSAT/NMSQT scores as the main application criteria:


National Merit Scholarship Program

The National Merit Scholarship Program is an academic competition for recognition

and college scholarships. United States high school students enter the National Merit Scholarship Program by taking PSAT/NMSQT, which serves as an initial screen of over 1.5 million entrants each year.


-Members have an average of 221 Selection Index for California

-The selection index is double the sum of your Reading, Writing and Language, and Math Test Scores

-To get a Selection Index of 220 or higher, a 37 is needed on each of the three sections


A list of more scholarships and recognition opportunities can be found here.


Other than scholarships

Other than being an opportunity for scholarships, the PSAT is a preliminary test of the actual SAT, which is an application requirement for certain universities. In fact, before 2021, both the UCs and CSUs had it as a requirement. While the SAT and PSAT are scored on different levels of content, the PSAT is still a good indicator of possible SAT scores. So, the PSAT is not used directly for college admissions, but being part of the National Merit Scholarship program will help with admissions, and also practice for the real SAT may help you get a higher score on the SAT, which does matter for some colleges.

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