PSAT National Merit Scholarship

January 25, 2023
By AdmissionSight

PSAT National Merit Scholarship

The PSAT, or Preliminary SAT, is a standardized test that is typically taken by high school students in their junior year. This test is used to determine eligibility for the National Merit Scholarship Program, which is a highly prestigious scholarship program that awards scholarships to students based on their scores on the PSAT. Here, we talk about all the need-to-knows about the PSAT National Merit Scholarship.

What is the PSAT National Merit Scholarship?

What is the PSAT National Merit Scholarship? The PSAT National Merit Scholarship is a scholarship program run by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) that recognizes and rewards academically talented high school students in the United States. The program is based on students’ scores on the PSAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (NMSQT), which is typically taken by juniors in high school.

Students who achieve a high score on the PSAT, typically within the top percentile of test takers, are recognized as National Merit Scholars and are eligible for various scholarship opportunities, including the National Merit Scholarship, corporate-sponsored scholarships, and college-sponsored scholarships.

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The National Merit Scholarship, the most prestigious of the awards, is a one-time award of $2,500 given to a select group of students. Corporate-sponsored scholarships, which are funded by over 200 corporations and business organizations, can provide between $500 and $10,000 per year. College-sponsored scholarships are provided by over 180 colleges and universities and can provide full or partial tuition coverage.

How to qualify for PSAT National Merit Scholarship?

How to qualify for PSAT National Merit Scholarship? To qualify for the said scholarship, students must meet the following requirements:

Take the PSAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (NMSQT) during their junior year of high school: The PSAT/NMSQT is the qualifying test for the National Merit Scholarship Program. It is typically taken in October and is offered to all high school juniors.

Achieve a high score on the PSAT: The National Merit Scholarship Program recognizes students who score in the top percentile of test takers. The exact cut-off scores vary from year to year and are determined by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

Meet academic requirements: Students must maintain a high grade point average, typically at least a “B” average or equivalent, throughout high school.

Be involved in extracurricular activities: Students should be involved in extracurricular activities such as clubs, sports, music, and volunteer work to demonstrate their leadership and community involvement.

Be endorsed and recommended by their school: Students must get an endorsement from their high school principal or guidance counselor, who can verify their grades and character.

Comply with the program’s entry requirements: Students must submit an official entry form, complete an online application, and provide an official transcript and a copy of their SAT or ACT scores to the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

It’s important to note that meeting these requirements does not guarantee a student will win a scholarship, as the selection process is highly competitive. Furthermore, the National Merit Scholarship Corporation periodically adjusts the requirements and the selection process, so it’s important to check the official website for the latest information.

What are the benefits of the PSAT National Merit Scholarship?

What are the benefits of the PSAT National Merit Scholarship? The said scholarship provides a number of benefits to academically talented high school students in the United States, including:

Financial assistance for college: The PSAT National Merit Scholarship Program awards scholarships to students who score in the top percentiles on the PSAT. These scholarships can be used to pay for college expenses such as tuition, fees, and books.

Recognition of academic achievement: Being recognized as a National Merit Scholar is a significant achievement that can be included in college applications and resumes.

Access to exclusive scholarship opportunities: Scholars have access to a variety of exclusive scholarship opportunities, including the National Merit Scholarship, corporate-sponsored scholarships, and college-sponsored scholarships.

Networking opportunities: Scholars have the opportunity to connect with other academically talented students through the National Merit Scholarship Program.

Opportunities to pursue academic interests: Some college-sponsored scholarships offer opportunities for National Merit Scholars to pursue specific academic interests, such as research or internships.

Increased college admissions chances: National Merit Scholars often receive priority consideration for college admissions, and some colleges offer scholarships or other incentives for National Merit Scholars to attend their institution.

How to prepare for the PSAT National Merit Scholarship?

How to prepare for the PSAT National Merit Scholarship? This quick guide can help you:

Take practice tests: One of the best ways to prepare for the PSAT is to take practice tests. This will help you become familiar with the format of the test and the types of questions that will be asked. You can find practice tests online or in test-prep books.

Understand the test format and timing: The PSAT is divided into two sections: math and evidence-based reading and writing. It is important to understand the format and timing of each section so you can manage your time effectively during the test.

Study math and English grammar: The PSAT tests your knowledge of math and English grammar, so it’s important to review these subjects before taking the test. Make sure you understand basic mathematical concepts, such as algebra and geometry, and refresh your knowledge of grammar rules and sentence structure.

Improve your vocabulary: The PSAT includes a vocabulary section, so it’s essential to build your vocabulary before taking the test. You can do this by reading extensively, learning new words, and practicing vocabulary exercises.

Get organized: Create a study schedule and stick to it. Make sure you have all the study materials you need, such as test-prep books, flashcards, and practice tests.

a smiling male student carrying his school stuff on this arms

Take care of yourself: Get enough sleep, eat well, and exercise regularly. Taking care of your physical and mental health will help you perform better on the test.

Seek help if needed: If you’re having trouble understanding certain concepts or you’re struggling to keep up with your studies, don’t hesitate to seek help. Talk to your teachers, or consider hiring a tutor or enrolling in a test-prep class.

It’s important to note that the scholarship qualifications and the selection process may change over time, so it’s important to check the official website of the National Merit Scholarship Corporation for the most up-to-date information.

The PSAT National Merit Scholarship is a great opportunity for academically talented high school students to earn scholarships to help pay for college and to be recognized for their academic achievements. It is a highly competitive program, but for those who are selected, it can make a significant difference in their college experience.

There will be a lot of challenges on your academic journey, but help is always here. At AdmissionSight, we have over 10 years of experience guiding students through the competitive admissions process to get accepted to the top universities in the world. Feel free to set up an appointment today to book your initial consultation.

 

 

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