What is a Good PSAT Score?

A Good PSAT Score can be hard to score, but not impossible, Learn more about PSAT Scores, Percentiles, tips to prepare and more

Updated by Selva Kumar on 9th January 2020

Most of the high school students take the PSAT in 10th or 11th grade and sometimes both. So you might face a question that what exactly is the PSAT, and what is considered to be a Good PSAT score, and many more

Well in this article we will explore the answers for most of the questions you have in mind regarding “ what is a good PSAT score?”


What is the PSAT?

The PSAT stands for Preliminary Scholastic Assessment Test or Preliminary SAT, it is an institutionalized test conducted by the CollegeBoard every October, this is a multiple-choice test consisting of four sections: Two math sections, the Reading and writing test, and the language test with a total time limit of two hours and ten minutes.

This test is administered in order to give the students a taste of what the SAT will be like.it also has other benefits like it determines the eligibility for the National Merit Scholarship Program(NMSC).


Also read: What is a Good SAT Score?


What is a Good PSAT Score?

In general, a “good score” differs based on the average, acceptance rate and competition. So a good PSAT can be defined as the score that’s higher than the 75th percentile. This means if a student has scored higher than 75% of other PSAT test-takers, then it is considered to be a good score. and score above 90 percentile can be said as an outstanding number.

For juniors, the 75th percentile may range from 580-590 on each section or a composite score of 1150-1160. For sophomores, the 75th percentile may range from 520-540 on each section or a composite score of 1060.

The following table shows the PSAT scores and percentile for juniors and sophomore.

PSAT Scores for Juniors.

Percentile

Math Score

Reading and Writing Score

Composite Score

99th

750

730

1480

96th

710

700

1410

75th

570

580-590

1150-1160

50th

490-500

510-520

1010-1020

25th

420-430

400-410

820-840


PSAT Scores for Sophomores(2018)

percentile

Math Score

Reading and Writing Score

Composite Score

99th

710

700

1370

96th

640

650

1290

75th

520-530

540

1050-1060

50th

450-460

460-470

910-920

25th

390-400

390

780-790


How is the PSAT Scored?

The PSAT ranges on a scale from 320-1520, This scoring scale and SAT scoring scale differ slightly as SAT ranges from 400-1600.

The scoring method of this exam is so similar to that of the SAT. Here, the scores of Evidence-based reading and writing (EBRW) and Math scores are added together in order to arrive at the composite score.

For Example -  A student scores 580 in the Maths and 500 in the EBRW section, which would equate to a total composite score of 1080.

The reason for the PSAT scoring scale being set out for 1520 is because all of them are scaled scores for maintaining the standard of the test across different dates. These scaled scores are derived from the raw scores.

These Raw scores are calculated by the number of questions answered correctly from each section (Math, Language, and EBRW; Evidence-Based Reading and Writing)

Just like the SAT, there is no negative marking, which means you won’t lose marks for wrong answers or skipping the question.


Subscores and Cross-Test Scores

You’ll be given subscores and cross-test scores in addition to the already existing Math and EBRW section scores. These Subscores breakdown the three-section(Math, Language, and EBRW) area into further smaller sections.


PSAT Subscores

These subscores help you show the level of performance on the specific subject areas

The following table shows the subscores for the respective section area.

For EBRW

  • Command of Evidence

  • Words in Context

  • Expression of Ideas

  • Standard English Conventions

For Math

  • Heart of Algebra

  • Problem Solving and Data Analysis

  • Passport to Advanced Math


PSAT Cross-Test Scores

The Cross-test scores show your level of performance in the area of history, social studies, and science, these Cross-test scores are section based, and they range in a scoring scale of 8-38

The Cross-test scores are classified into two types, that are as follows:

  • Analysis in Historical/Social Studies

  • Analysis in Science.


How to Get a Good PSAT Score?

Fix a goal

It is good to have a goal, which helps you focus on your PSAT preparation without much stress and distraction. Knowing your end result and working would definitely make you understand where you went wrong if you are stuck and the reason if you succeed.

Just Practice

Be aware of your weaknesses and strengths and start working on them. Take a practice test and review, if you can’t your goal, practice until you reach them from the current score.

Keep Guessing

Guessing might sometimes work. As there are no negative marks for wrong ones just try to attend each and every question. You might get it right.

Create a schedule

To keep your mind focused and to keep track of time, you should create a study plan, “Plan your study, study by your Plan”