What do I take to the real test?

Being prepared will help lessen the overall stress of test-taking, so gather these items the night before: several sharpened pencils (#2), calculator with new batteries, 2 picture I.D’s, registration ticket (from College Board web site), driving directions, sweater (buildings are usually kept cold), water and a snack. 

How do I set up my profile with the College Board?

To get an account at College Board go to: https://ecl.collegeboard.com/account/AccountProfile.jsp 

What kind of calculator do I need for the SAT and PSAT?

First of all, all math questions on these tests CAN be answered correctly and quickly without a calculator. On one section of math, a calculator is not permitted.

It is recommended that all students take a calculator to the test. You are only allowed to use it during one of the math sections, and sharing one will be cause for dismissal from the test. Here are the acceptable calculators:

Graphing calculators

Scientific calculators

Four-function calculators (not recommended option).

BE WARNED – students may be seated away from other students (at the discretion of the test proctor) if their calculator has characters that are one inch or bigger or if it has a raised display where others may see it.

THESE are unacceptable calculators:

Laptop or a portable/handheld computer

Any calculator that has (typewriter-like) keypad, uses an electrical outlet, makes noise, or has a paper tape

Electronic writing pad or pen-input/stylus-driven device

Pocket organizer

Cell phone calculators

Can you give me some good tips on using a calculator?

It is always good to use the same calculator that you have been practicing with at home or at school. Always bring one to the test just in case, and make sure it has fresh batteries. Simple functions are all that are needed, so don’t waste your money on expensive calculators.

Can I write in my actual test booklet?

Yes, you can! The official College Board test rules in the “Getting Ready for the SAT” states clearly that students can use their test booklet for scratch work. One of these guides can also be picked up at a guidance counselor’s office. Here’s also a direct link: http://www.collegeboard.com/prod_downloads/sat/getting-ready-for-the-sat.pdf 

When and how often should students take the SAT?

Many students start taking the SAT as early as seventh grade for talent search purposes, and there is no age limit so take the SAT many times to get the desired score. Students should start working on the PSAT/NMSQT in eighth grade. By taking the PSAT in eighth, ninth and tenth grade, students can become familiar with the test and can learn to identify their weaknesses and strengths. Sophomores should take at least 2-3 SATs and use the summer before the junior year to prepare for the PSAT. Juniors should take the October SAT right before the PSAT/NMSQT which will qualify them for the National Merit Scholarship competition.

How many times can I take the PSAT/NMSQT?

Students can take the PSAT “multiple” times so start with the PSAT 8/9 in eighth grade. It is only offered once per year, but it only counts for scholarships during the junior year.

How do I get my PSAT test booklet back?

If a student goes to a public or private school, the booklets are sent back to the school in November. Homeschoolers can use the homeschool code for their state and receive the test booklet in the mail.