PSAT Practice Test
The Preliminary SAT (PSAT) is a standardized test conducted by the National Merit Scholarship and the College Board to test the preparedness of students for the SAT. The PSAT practice test is typically advised for students who intend to appear for the PSAT/NMSQT and is helpful in measuring the college readiness of students.
What the PSAT Practice Test Measures
The PSAT Practice test measures a student’s skills in the following three academic areas:
- Critical reading skills: The critical skills sections comprises sentence completion and passage reading sections. There are two 25-minute critical reading sections comprising 48 questions. There are 13 questions for sentence completion and 35 questions for passage-based reading. The sentence completion section tests the student’s knowledge of vocabulary and their ability to understand the logical relationship between the different parts of a sentence. The passage reading section measures the student’s ability to read and think carefully about a passage or a pair of related passages.
- Writing skills: The writing skills section is designed to test the student’s skills in expressing ideas effectively in written English. This section comprises of one 30-minute section with 39 questions. The writing skills section comprises sub-sections on identifying sentence errors (14 questions), improving sentences (20 questions), and improving paragraphs (5 questions). While identifying sentence errors, students are tested for their skills in grammar, usage, word choice, and idioms. In the improving sentences sub-section, the students are required to fix an awkward and grammatically incorrect sentence. The paragraph improvement sub-section tests the students understanding of logic, coherence, and organization of ideas in a poorly-written passage.
- Math problem-solving skills: there are two 25-minute math sections comprising 38 questions. This section comprises 28 multiple choice questions with five options. The students are required to select the best option. There are 10 student produced responses or grid-ins. This section comprises questions based on basic knowledge of number, operations, algebra, and functions. It also includes questions based on geometry, measurement, data analysis, statistics, and probability. Students are allowed to use calculators for this section.
The PSAT/NMSQT needs to be completed within 2 hours and 10 minutes.
Why Take the PSAT Practice Test?
The PSAT practice test is a valuable tool to critically analyze their preparedness for the PSAT. It provides a valuable opportunity for students to become familiar with the PSAT/NMSQT. The PSAT practice tests are useful in building the confidence of students before the actual exam. They can identify their strong areas as well as the areas that they need to focus on before taking the exam. The PSAT practice tests provide students instant feedback and offer explanations for incorrect as well as correct answers.
Taking the PSAT practice tests prepares the students to time their practice for the exam. The instant scores highlight the strong and weak areas of the student so they know exactly which areas to study more while preparing for the PSAT. The PSAT practice tests are very useful in reinforcing their learning and building their morale for the exam.
The scores of PSAT practice tests are also helpful for educators as based on these scores, they are able to pinpoint skills gaps in students and improve and customize their instruction so as to make up for the weak areas.
The common features of PSAT practice test are:
- They provide an in-depth feedback about the strengths and weaknesses in the skills that are necessary for college study. Students can customize their preparation on skills that will benefit the most by additional study.
- The PSAT practice tests are valuable for students for assessing their performance in comparison to the others taking the exam.
- The PSAT practice tests are useful in preparing students for the SAT and they gain familiarity with the questions asked in the SAT.