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National merit cut points are finally here and our year of speculation is behind us. Thousands of students who were hoping that their PSAT score of “1%” would qualify them for State Merit are sure to be disappointed by the recently released score thresholds.
For reference, let’s take a look at the PSAT cutoff scores that existed before the test was redesigned. Scores on this test ranged from 60 to 240, with a “Recommended” score (which qualifies for specific scholarships) of 202 and an average national merit score (which qualifies students for a scholarship). Merit and varies by country) from 212.7 points.
National Merit Qualifying Scores 2017
The redesigned PSAT changed the potential score (called the “Selection Index Score”) from 60-240 to 48-228. So everything seemed to go down by about 12 points. The math seemed simple enough that people thought the 2017 national merit numbers might look like this:
National Merit Psat Cutoff Scores: Class Of 2022
When PSAT scores came out in January, some schools expected national merit to turn in favor of kids, assuming the scholarship ceiling would follow the same decline. But recently released national merit-score cutoffs have shattered that illusion. The actual numbers look very different from the first estimates:
Forget the 12 point drop. Instead, we see a net increase of nearly 4 points for National Merit and 7 points for Special Reference! Of the 50 states and Washington, DC, only six regions saw border reductions, three saw no change, and the remaining 41 regions saw a net increase. Our friends in California at Compass Prep compiled the results into a nice table available here.
Those five states and DC had rates that were already through the roof. NJ and DC posted a score of 225, down 15 points from the perfect 240 in the previous test. It would have been an incredible feat for any state to score 225 this year, just 3 points from perfection on the new scale!
We created a heat map to show the most competitive states with the highest cutoff scores (deep red) and the least competitive states with the lowest cutoff scores (light peach).
Psat National Merit Faq
The East and West coasts have always been home to high national merit scores, but things are clearly heating up in Texas, which had an impressively high cutoff of 220.
Additionally, it is worth noting that the distribution of cut scores across states is more compressed with the new PSAT compared to the discontinued PSAT. The old PSAT cutoff range varied by state from 202 to 225, a difference of 23 points. Now, from least competitive to most competitive, the range is 209 to 222, a difference of 13 points. The new PSAT adjusts the cutoffs across states, with lower cutoffs between, for example, D.C. and Mississippi.
How did the score drop from 60-240 to 48-228 while the average national earnings cutoff went up? In short, they are completely different tests, on completely different curves. Compare the score distribution of the final “old” PSAT with the first redesigned PSAT:
Notice how the entire curve appears to have shifted to the right: the new PSAT curve has a large “tail” to the left, and the mean is shifted to the right of the midpoint of the scale, squeezing the points at the top. scale. distribution. . Behind these changes lies the elimination of the guessing penalty and the reduction of possible answer options from five to four. Basically, students who guess blind will score slightly higher than before and still be at the bottom of the distribution. This has long been the case for the ACT, which has a similar “tail” in its score distribution.
Wednesday Psat With Answers 10_11_17.pdf
Will there be a National Merit Award across the country? No, there won’t be. The number of places remains around 16,000, distributed proportionally to the number of the country’s population. More populous states have proportionately more National Merit points, while specific cutoff points will depend on student achievement in each state. Anecdotally, some school counselors I’ve talked to have found that their schools actually have little national merit. However, it does indicate that their students are better prepared for the format and content of the redesigned PSAT, with tighter Common Core alignment and less emphasis on geometry and advanced vocabulary.
As students become more familiar with the redesigned PSAT, we anticipate increased competition in many states in the coming years. That means it’s a reasonable conclusion that October’s PSAT scores will be within a few points of the current 2015 PSAT cutoffs.
Students with sophomore PSAT scores within 10-15 points of published national merit for 2017 should consider doing some homework to see if they can meet the threshold and qualify for a National Merit Scholarship. This one-time $2,500 award can be used for outstanding merit at colleges across the country. We’ve seen hundreds of students use their National Merit Awards to receive deep discounts and even free tuition, making college much more affordable for their families. If you’re close to one of these cutoff points, a little extra preparation can help you land a scholarship.
Is a trusted resource for training and test preparation. We combine the science of learning with a thoughtful, student-centered approach to help our clients succeed. Call or text us today at 866-789-PREP (7737) or [email protected] Compass has learned that this year’s National Merit Citation cap will remain at 207, an all-time low set by the Class of 2022. What are the reasons. the low cut and what is the impact on semi finalist cuts to be announced in september? [
Twelve Lamp Students Are 2022 National Merit Semifinalists
For an overview of the National Merit process, including the selection of finalists, please see our FAQ. An archive of our post on preparing for the Class of 2022 cut can be found here. For trends going back to the Class of 2008, see Historical State Merit Limits.
The recommended cap was at the lower end of the expected range, despite PSAT enrollment rising from 982,000 in October 2020 (and recovering in January 2021) to nearly 1.5 million in October 2020. seen in 2021 record low AP ratings. The commendation cut-off is set nationally, so 50,000 National Merit-eligible students with a score of 207 or higher will achieve at least commendation status. On the other hand, the 16,000 semi-final seats are spread across states, with maximum seats for semi-finalists likely to range from 207 to 222.
It is tempting to assume that the semi-finalist caps will remain the same given the unchanged recommended cap. It turns out that this assumption is no better than flipping a coin (although it is also the most accurate assumption). There has never been a year in the Compass’s historical archives where more than 25 semi-finalist cuts were consistent.
While we provide a “most likely” estimate of each state semifinalist’s graduation rate in the table below, Compass encourages students to think in ranges instead. Even in years when the overall figures are stable, individual country restrictions rise and fall. These changes are, on average, lower in states with higher margins and higher in states with smaller populations. The historical standard deviation of Alaska’s boundaries is 3 times that of Connecticut, for example, and more than twice that of New York.
California National Merit Scholarship Winners
While we shouldn’t expect more than 24 or 25 cuts to remain consistent, the combination of increases and decreases is generally well distributed in stable years. We may only see 10-12 semifinalist cuts in the 2023 class; that’s still 10-12 too many surprises for the graduating class of 2022. The period between now and Labor Day is always stressful for students in the “bubble.”
In December, Compass reported a low top score for the October 2021 PSAT. Only 3% of test takers scored 1400 or higher. Three things could account for such a low number: (1) the October 2021 test was challenging at scale (what we saw on the October 2019 test), (2) student learning has been affected during the pandemic and test performance reflects that (what we saw the 2021 AP), or (3) a disproportionate number of top scorers could not (or chose not to) take the test. The first two cases, if true, could affect all states evenly. The third scenario is a wild card.
Lockdown restrictions were not exactly the same in the first year of Covid-19. California had just 13% of its regular PSAT takers in 2019, while Florida hit 82% of the previous year’s numbers. Fewer students taking the PSAT usually correlates with lower semifinalists. So a return to normal could indicate higher limits. The College Board doesn’t release national scores until the fall, but that’s the most we know
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