college

Will you take the PSATS/ SATS next year?

By Mazzy Ricklefs       

The PSATS were Wednesday, October 13th for all junior CVU students. The weekend before that, Saturday, October 9th, seniors had their first round of SATS, which will continue through October and can be taken in the winter as well. Many juniors take the SATS, too, which will become available this winter/ spring, although most retake it senior year. “I’m taking the SATS later this year, that way I can retake them next year in case I don’t do too well.” says Lucas, an 11th grader at CVU.

Lucas wasn’t really nervous or worried about taking the PSATS and planned to take advantage of the practice it will give him for SATS. The PSAT is just a practice test for the actual SAT. Though it doesn’t count for anything, sometimes people submit the scores received on it to colleges, to see. The SAT is the test that actually matters to most people and can be taken up to 2 times. The SAT is a standardized test for getting into college but not every school requires you to submit your score.

There are 3 parts to the PSAT test: Reading ( 47 multiple choice questions), Writing and Language (44 multiple choice questions), and math ( 40 multiple choice questions and 8 student produced response questions).

As far as the SATS, they are just a more complicated and longer version of the PSATS. Gabby, a senior who took the PSATS last year, states that she, “Didn’t want to go because it seemed slightly stressful but it ended up being pretty easy, just very long.” Megan, a junior that took the practice test this past Wednesday, seems to have a similar thought. “It was very consuming and I couldn’t get through all the questions in the amount of time required, so that was a little disappointing.” As far as what the process of taking the test was like, she says that ” The PSATS were very formal and we only got 5 minute breaks… weren’t allowed to leave the classroom.”

So are taking the PSATS or SATS worth it? This year 10 students opted out of taking the PSATS and it is unclear if they opted out due to the fact that both formal tests are optional this year because many colleges are not requiring them. “By going test-optional, institutions are making a definitive statement that they will not need test scores to make admission decisions this year,” the National Association for College Admission Counseling said earlier this year. For students with low-income families, however, opting out of testing is not an option because scholarships tied to test scores are only more in demand due to the pandemic effect on our economy.