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  1. What do you all do for photo identification for your pre-learner's permit aged children for these tests? My oldest had a passport already. 2nd didn't take any of these tests. When 3rd went to the local hs for the PSAT they started to give us a hard time because all she had was her paper "learner's permit" which she had gotten the day before... until one of the girls who knew her said "Janie!! What are you doing here? Are you taking the PSAT?" Problem solved (we live in a small town). :) But #4 may not be so fortunate, and I'm trying to think ahead. Thanks a bunch!
  2. Let's see if I have this straight. The prep recommendations for the PSAT that have been floated previously include SAT prep books, the College Board question of the day and online free programs like number2.com (SAT prep). For those who are wondering, the PSAT is always administered in October. One does not register through the College Board but at a local school (public or private). The PSAT can be taken before 11th grade, but it only counts for National Merit Scholarships in 11th. Regarding National Merit Scholarships: Could we flesh out this subject? If a student taking the PSAT in 11th has a sufficiently high score in his state, he is recognized by the National Merit people. The student could be "commended" or a "semifinalist". Question: when a student is recognized by the National Merit program, does he know immediately whether he is commended or a semi-finalist? The move from semi-finalist to finalist relies on an SAT score and an application. What is on the application? Are students writing essays for the National Merit? Students specify a single college (say College A) on their National Merit applications. If they change their mind about College A, would any National Merit funds be transferable? Even if your student did not specify College A on his application, did his college recognize and reward his National Merit status? Now that my son is taking the PSAT "for real" in October, I am trying to see how National Merit could fit into the picture. It just seems to me, though, that students who are torn between a couple of schools (because of their programs or financial aid packages) may not be able to capitalize on National Merit--or do I have this wrong? As always, I thank you for sharing your wisdom. Jane P.S. Please correct any misconceptions that I may have!
  3. I found out last spring that there is no age requirement for these test so I had DD 12 take the SAT this past June. I told her it was just to see what it's like. She's good at test taking and didn't mind. She did well enough to qualify for John's Hopkins CTY Center for talented Youth (at least in the reading and writing portions). I told her she could skip the math sections as we still have work to do in math. So now she's in 8th grade and I just registered her for the PSAT next month. When she took the SAT last year she was a little nervous but this time when I asked about the PSAT she said 'COOL' I think she met a girl at the test that was her age and also a little book worm (They put all the 7th and 8th graders together). We did a mini practice test from a web site but haven't done any real test prep. I wanted to know if anyone else had their kids start on these test early? How many points do kids usually increase from year to year?
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