While the SAT and PSAT tests have a lot in common, they have differences in how and where you take the tests, what your scores mean, and more.
With that in-depth look, let's start by comparing things like test names, their purposes, content, score, and cost.
What is the SAT Test Suite?
The SAT Test Suite is comprised ofSAT DOWN,PSAT/NMSQT,PSAT 10, youPSAT 8/9. College Board assessments examine the same skills and information at an acceptable level for different grades taking the tests.
All assessments in the suite assess reading, writing, language, and math skills. The test usually starts with 8th and 9th graders taking the PSAT 8/9. Then, in grade 10, students take PSAT 10 or PSAT/NMSQT. Once in Grade 11, students can take the PSAT/NMSQT, the SAT, or both. Finally, most students take the SAT for the first time in the spring of freshman year and again at the beginning of senior year. The SAT is the only test in the SAT Assessment Suite available to seniors.
The overall goal of the SAT assessment suite is to make it easier for students, parents, and teachers to understand and track student progress toward college.
The Difference Between the SAT and PSAT: Names
What does "SAT" mean?
Today, "SAT" has no meaning as an acronym. The acronym SAT originally stood for "School Aptitude Test", but as the test evolved, the meaning of the acronym was abandoned.
What does "PSAT" mean?
"PSAT" stands for "Preliminary SAT" but has no meaning on its own as there is not a single test but rather three assessments related to the PSAT: PSAT 8/9, PSAT 10 and PSAT/NMSQT (Preliminary SAT/National Merit) . Scholarship Eligibility Test).
The Difference Between SAT and PSAT Related Assessments: Purpose
Why take the SAT?
The SAT is a widely accepted admission test for US universities and many international universities and colleges. SAT scores help colleges compare students from different high schools. Your scores show your strengths and readiness for college work. But remember, scores are just one part of your college application, along with grades, course rigor, and recommendations.
Why take the PSAT/NMSQT?
The PSAT/NMSQT is a practice for the SAT. Its sections and questions follow the same format. As with the SAT, those who take the PSAT/NMSQT have the opportunity to chooseStudent search service® and receive communications directly from universities. What makes the PSAT/NMSQT different from other tests in the SAT Suite of Assessments is that it is the qualifying test for theNational Merit® Scholarship Program. Top performing students on the PSAT/NMSQT may qualify for scholarships and recognition from this prestigious awards program.
Why take the PSAT 10?
PSAT 10 paves the way to college readiness by giving 10th graders the opportunity to opt into the Student Search Service, access Roadtrip Nation's career roadmap, and identify potential AP course recommendations. In PSAT 10, students become familiar with the types of questions they will see on the SAT and receive an indication of how well they will do on the PSAT/NMSQT. Although the PSAT 10 does not qualify students for the National Merit Scholarship Program, the score report provides useful information about academic strengths and weaknesses.
Why take the PSAT 8/9?
The PSAT 8/9 is often a student's first experience with the SAT assessment suite and includes the same types of questions that students will see on the other tests. It's a low-risk test, which means colleges and scholarship programs will never see your score. It is used as an initial barometer to identify areas of study that may need work.
The Difference Between SAT and PSAT-Related Assessments: Who Takes Them and When
Who can take the SAT?
While anyone can take the SAT, most students take it in grade 11 or 12 to prepare for college applications. If you are 12 or younger or 21 or older, read aboutSAT Record for Younger StudentsoSAT Record for Examinees Over 21 Years of Age.
Who can take the PSAT/NMSQT?
PSAT/NMSQT is usually taken by students in grade 10 or 11.
Who can take the PSAT 10?
The PSAT 10 is intended for tenth graders.
Who can take the PSAT 8/9?
The PSAT 8/9 is for 8th and 9th grade students.
When is the SAT administered?
The SAT is administered nationwide seven times a year in August, October, November, December, March, May and June. There are also fall and spring school day administrations for participating schools.
see nextSAT test dates, which include scheduled test dates and SAT application deadlines.
When is the PSAT/NMSQT administered?
Unlike other PSAT-related tests, the PSAT/NMSQT is administered nationally on the same dates.
The main test day for the PSAT/NMSQT is in mid-October, with an additional Saturday date and an alternate test date slightly later.
Learn more about upcomingPSAT/NMSQT test dates.
When is PSAT 10 administered?
PSAT 10 is only offered in the spring. However, schools may administer the PSAT 10 at any time during two windows of approximately four weeks.
When is the PSAT 8/9 given?
It is up to the schools that administer the PSAT 8/9 to choose when students will take the test. This can range from late September to April, with certain dates unavailable.
The Difference Between SAT and PSAT Related Tests: How Many Times You Can Take Them
How many times can you take the SAT?
Unlike PSAT-related assessments, which you typically only take if your school administers them, you can take the SAT multiple times, selecting the dates that best suit your needs. In addition, many schools, districts, and states participate in SAT Day of School, which is held on select dates in the fall and spring, providing students with additional dates and testing opportunities.
How often can you take PSAT related tests?
Schools purchase and administer PSAT-related assessments, so students do not register directly for these tests. This means that the PSAT 8/9 or PSAT 10 are usually taken when the school decides to administer them, while the PSAT/NMSQT is administered nationally on designated dates. In theory, students could take the PSAT 8/9 up to two times (once in 8th grade and once in 9th grade). Depending on the school, a Grade 10 student may take the PSAT/NMSQT in the fall or the PSAT 10 in the spring. The PSAT/NMSQT can only be taken once per school year and schools may offer it to students in grades 10 or 11. In fact, many schools offer it for both grades.
The Difference Between SAT and PSAT Related Assessments: Apply
How to Register for the SAT
Students can independentlyregister to take the SATthrough your College Board account, selecting the test date and center that best suits your needs.
A growing number of students also participate in SAT school administrations, which are held on weekdays instead of the traditional Saturday. For these SAT administrations, the school selects the test date and electronically registers students or asks them to complete registration information on their SAT answer sheet.
How to Register for PSAT Related Tests
Unlike the SAT, which you can independently apply for, schools purchase and administer PSAT-related assessments. If your school administers PSAT 8/9, PSAT 10P or SAT/NMSQT, you can apply to participate at your school. Some schools may require their students to take the test.
If you are homeschooled, you will need to register to take the PSAT-related assessments at a local school that administers them.
The Difference Between Tests Related to the PSAT and the: SAT: Test Sites
Where do you take the SAT?
If you are not taking the SAT at school with your class (on a weekday), you can sign up to take it on Saturday at a testing center. Many public schools and larger private schools serve as test centers for Sabbath administration.
find yournearest SAT test center.
Where are PSAT-related assessments conducted?
Since you can only take PSAT-related assessments if your school decides to administer the tests, you will take them in elementary or high school.
The Difference Between PSAT and SAT Related Assessments: Cost
How much does it cost to take the SAT?
Currently, the SAT costs $60. These costs are usually adjusted annually.
Other fees may apply for special registration and additional scoring services.Learn more about these SAT service fees.
Fee waivers are available for low-income students who wish to take the SAT. Find out if you are entitled to onefee exemptionfor the SAT.
International fees apply if you are taking the SAT outside the United States and its territories. learn more aboutinternational fares for the SAT.
How much does it cost to take the PSAT-related assessments?
The PSAT 8/9, PSAT 10 and PSAT/NMSQT tests are charged to the school at a flat fee per student. Many schools cover all or part of the cost for their students. If you have not received details from your school, please ask the school counselor for clarification.
The Difference Between PSAT and SAT Related Assessments: Duration
How long is or sat?
The SAT takes just over 3 hours.It consists of a 65-minute reading test, a 35-minute writing and language test, a 25-minute no-calculator math test, and a 55-minute math test where you can use a calculator. If your school offers an option to take the SAT with an essay, you will have 50 minutes to complete it. With breaks, the entire SAT without an essay takes 3 hours and 15 minutes to complete. The SAT with essay and breaks lasts 4 hours and 7 minutes.
What is the duration of PSAT 10 and PSAT/NMSQT?
PSAT 10 and PSAT/NMSQT take just under 3 hours. They consist of a 60-minute reading test, a 35-minute writing and language test, a 25-minute no-calculator math test, and a 45-minute math test where you can use a calculator. With breaks, the entire PSAT 10 and PSAT/NMSQT are 2 hours and 55 minutes each.
What is the duration of the PSAT 8/9?
PSAT 8/9 is approximately 2.5 hours. It consists of a 55-minute reading test, a 30-minute writing and language test, a 20-minute math test without a calculator, and a 40-minute math test where you can use a calculator. With intervals, the entire PSAT 8/9 takes 2 hours and 35 minutes.
The Difference Between SAT and PSAT Related Assessments: Content
The SAT assessment suite assesses reading, writing, language, and math skills at an appropriate level for students taking the test. For example, PSAT 8/9 will test skills at level 8 or 9, while PSAT 10, PSAT/NMSQT and SAT will test skills at a more advanced level.
The Difference Between SAT and PSAT Related Assessments: Scores and Scoring
Assessment Scores Related to the SAT and PSAT
While maximum section and total scores vary between tests in the SAT Suite of Assessments, one thing they all share is that there is no penalty for guessing.
How is the SAT scored?
The maximum total score you can earn on the SAT is 1,600 points, calculated by combining scores from two sections: Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and Math, each with a maximum possible 800 points. Section scores (also called subscores) are graded from a raw score of 40 points on three tests: Reading, Writing, and Language and Mathematics.
How are PSAT 10 and PSAT/NMSQT scored?
The highest total score you can achieve on the PSAT 10 or PSAT/NMSQT is 1520. This is calculated by combining two section scores: Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and Mathematics, each of a maximum of 760 possible points. Section scores are calculated from your raw score of 38 points on three tests: Reading, Writing, and Language and Math.
How is the PSAT 8/9 scored?
The maximum total score you can earn on the PSAT 8/9 is 1440. It consists of two section scores: Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and Mathematics, each with a maximum possible 720 points. Section scores are calculated from your raw score of 36 points on three tests: Reading, Writing, and Language and Math.
Who sees your SAT scores?
Colleges and scholarship programs only see a student's SAT scores when the student specifically designates the student as a beneficiary. Students can select these recipients either before taking the test or later. learn more abouthow to send sat scores.
Who sees your PSAT/NMSQT scores?
College Board sends your PSAT/NMSQT scoresto your school, and in most cases, your school district and state as well. Schools can also send your report card to your parents. Students can view their PSAT/NMSQT scores online atStudent Score Portal.
the college boardit is notsubmit PSAT/NMSQT scores to colleges. However, as the PSAT/NMSQT is the official qualifying test for the National Merit Scholarship Program,National Merit Scholarship Corporation, as co-sponsor of the test, receives all scores. For students who meet the eligibility requirements, scores are also automatically sent to these scholarship programs:
- National Hispanic Recognition Program
- National Scholarship Service
- Telluride Seminary Scholarships
If you do not wish your scores to be released to the organizations listed above, please write to the PSAT/NMSQT Program by October 31st of the year you take the test at this address:
CORRESPONDENCE. box 6720
Princeton, NJ 08541-6720
Information is also shared with other scholarship partners when you accept the Student Finder Service during or after the exam.big future. This helps fellows connect with you and communicate about college opportunities and money. These scholarship programs include:
- American Indian Graduate Center
- American Asian and Pacific Islander Scholarship Fund
- cobell bag
- Fund Daniels
- George Snow Scholarship Fund
- Hispanic Scholarship Fund
- Horatio Alger Association
- Jack Kent Cooke Foundation
- Jackie Robinson Foundation
- Ron Brown Scholarship Program
- FOR US
- Fundo United Black College
- Washington State Opportunity Association
Who sees your PSAT 10 scores?
As with the PSAT/NMSQT, the College Board submits your PSAT 10 scores to your school and, in most cases, to the school district and state. Schools can also send their PSAT 10 score report to their parents. Students can view their PSAT 10 scores online atStudent Score Portal.
facultiesnoreceive your PSAT 10 scores. Your PSAT 10 scores are not part of the college admissions process. PSAT 10 scores are not automatically sent to partner scholarship organizations like PSAT/NMSQT.
If you opt in on your answer sheet, some of your information (but not your individual score) will be sent to the Student Search Service® to help you find colleges and scholarship opportunities. Both PSAT 10 and PSAT/NMSQT connect you to additional scholarship opportunities with the providers listed above.
Learn more about who sees yourPSAT/NMSQT and PSAT 10 scores.
Who sees your PSAT 8/9 scores?
The College Board sends your PSAT 8/9 scores to your school and, in many cases, to your school district and state. Schools can send score reports to their parents. Students can also view their scores online atStudent Score Portal.
facultiesnothey receive your PSAT 8/9 scores and play no role in the college admissions process.
learn more aboutwho sees your PSAT score 8/9.