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PSAT is the way to go to familiarize yourself with SAT

If you are planning to appear in SAT and other similar multiple-choice standardized tests for admission into Indian or overseas universities, then the Preliminary SAT, PSAT , is one exam that you could hugely benefit from. The PSAT is basically an exam roughly based on problem solving skills and subject matter taught in high school in the following three subjects: Math, Writing, and Critical Reading.

The exam is conducted by the College Board, the same entity responsible for conducting the SAT.

The PSAT is basically a college readiness test that students can appear in their own school. To appear in the test, a student should first contact his school’s principal, administrator or college guidance counselor’s office. In case the school does not administer PSAT, then he can appear in the exam through any nearby USIEF (United States – India Education Foundation) center. For further information, students are encouraged to visit the website.

Schools are required paying $17 per student for the exam. However, several schools charge a small additional amount to incur the internal costs of administering exam. Please note that the exam fee includes the cost of the test booklets to be sent all the way from the U.S.

Also See: What is the Eligibility for SAT Exam?

Experts suggest that students should see PSAT as a stress free exam as it has no effect in their future academic prospects. It should be rather used to evaluate one’s own ability and level of preparedness to take an exam similar to SAT.

“The biggest benefit of taking the PSAT early, in Grade 9 or 10, is that the PSAT Score Report provides very detailed and meaningful feedback about a student’s strengths and weaknesses in the skills tested on the PSAT. Students can not only see how they performed compared to other students who took the test, but also assess their performance on each question based on difficulty level (easy, medium, or hard),” said Lisa Jain, India Representative, College Board, in an interview with the Hindu.

“The PSAT is held only once a year, in October. Many students take the PSAT in Grade 9, and then again in Grade 10, to measure improvement in skills. Several students also take the PSAT in Grade 11, if they aren’t already planning to take the SAT at the same time. For the SAT — at least half of all students take the SAT twice — in Grade 11 and/or in Grade 12. Most students do see an improvement in scores the second time they take the test. However, it is not advisable to take the test too many times” Jain added.

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