The purpose of taking the PSAT/NMSQT in 10th is only to get a bit of practice about how to take a bubble test in a public school setting. Even in 11th grade, the purpose is still "just for practice" unless your child scores in the 95th percentile or above. So when you miss the PSAT/NMSQT, don't sweat the small stuff.
Here are two simple tips if you have missed the PSAT/NMSQT in 10th grade.
1. Take the sample SAT and ACT at home with cookies.
The SAT score is similar to the score on the PSAT/NMSQT, so this can help you guide the process. That will tell you if the PSAT/NMSQT is even important at all. If your child scores VERY high on the SAT test, then it WILL be important to take the PSAT/NMSQT in 11th grade to get the chance at the National Merit Scholarship. On the other hand, if your child does NOT do well on the SAT test, then the PSAT/NMSQT in 11th grade is only being used for a second practice situation. And if that sample ACT at home is much higher than the sample SAT at home, you know to study for that test instead.
2. Find a group test experience.
You can find another "fill in the bubble with groups of teens" options that would be good for practice. Call your public library, and see if they offer SAT or ACT tests? Often the Kaplan and Peterson's companies will go to public libraries and other locations for publicity purposes. They will provide a timed test without any explanation, and then hope that when you return to receive your score, they will talk you into buying their test prep programs. You can use that environment as a practice for the test environment for free, if you can find this option.
Remember, don't sweat the small stuff. Move forward in faith believing in ultimate success. Lots of kids get into college and get great scholarships, even when their parent forgot the PSAT/NMSQT. It's not the end of the world.
Taking the PSAT/NMSQT, SAT, and ACT during 10th and 11th grade is a small step along the path of finding a college. For more assistance getting into college, finding scholarships, and avoiding debt, read about the College Launch Solution
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