The PSAT is up in the air. In this blog, we’re talking about how to find out if your PSAT was cancelled, and what the repercussions are if it is.
COVID-19 has caused a lot of tests around the country to be cancelled, rescheduled, and cancelled again. Additionally, there are some regions in the U.S that have stricter social distancing regulations than others. So while one school may be open in one city, another school in a neighboring city may be closed.
Ask Your School
The PSAT is administered by your high school. So the only way to know if you PSAT is cancelled or not is to ask your school.
If local ordinances are strict about social gatherings inside, that may be a sign that your school won’t administer the test. Additionally, if you’re school is closed and you are doing online Zoom learning, that is another sign that the PSAT is unlikely to occur.
Is the PSAT Important for College Admission?
Yes and no. The PSAT is simply a practice SAT for most students. It is almost identical to the real SAT, except it is scored out of 1520, there is no essay section, and the math section is slightly easier. No college will ever see your PSAT score.
The PSAT only matters if you are trying to qualify as a National Merit Scholar. This applies to the top half of the top 1% of scorers. Being a National Merit Scholar is something you can put on your college application, and you may even qualify for a scholarship.
What if the PSAT is Cancelled Near Me?
The PSAT will occur on October 14th, October 17th, and October 29th of 2020. This allows for flexibility for schools to administer the test. The test can be administered at different times of the day and allow of COVID-19 considerations.
But if you’re school is closed, what does that mean for you?
If you want to try to be a National Merit Scholar, in the past years when a school couldn’t administer a PSAT, the College Board allowed students to use an SAT test date as a replacement test to qualify for the competition. It’s unclear if that will apply for this year.
The College Board has also released a 2021 PSAT test date for January 26th. This may allow students to take the PSAT when (and if) restrictions ease in the new year.
Ultimately, don’t despair if you are unable to take the PSAT. For 99% of you, the PSAT is just a practice test. And there’s many practice tests you can print out at home and do to study for the real SAT.
And for those who want to be National Merit Finalists, hopefully over time you’ll get your opportunity to shine.