When you think about the PSAT, you probably think of it as a pre-SAT. It has actually become much more than that. The Fairfield Public School System has adopted the PSAT as our new district assessment and the State of Connecticut has chosen the SAT as our new state assessment in place of SBAC.
While the PSAT is a great primer for the SAT (and even the ACT), it is more than just a trial run for the real thing. The PSAT/NMSQT is an important step in your journey beyond high school. The test offers you the opportunity to connect with colleges and universities, enter scholarship competitions, get ready for the new SAT and college, sharpen your skills with free practice on Khan Academy and learn what AP classes might coincide with your strengthens. It is a wonderful chance for you to be recognized and rewarded for the skills and knowledge you’ve earned.
Additionally, the PSAT is a tool many colleges and universities use to identify students they think may make a good addition to their student body and who may be deserving of scholarships. These scores are a way for colleges to be more selective in their recruitment process, and having schools express interest in you and recruit you to apply can also increase confidence.
The PSAT won’t count towards your college admissions applications, but it is the qualifying test for the National Merit Scholarship. This means that some of the highest scoring students may win scholarship money, so while you shouldn’t stress out about the PSAT, you certainly shouldn’t ignore it either. Instead, use the PSAT as both practice for the SAT and ACT and one of the starting points on your college admissions journey.
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Mustangs, Welcome to Junior Year!
Junior Year is an exciting time. You will have the opportunity to explore your interest and potential career options through programs such as “Do What You Are” and “Job Shadowing.” In addition to being a very important year academically, this is also an important time to strengthen your involvement in school clubs and activities. Below is an outline of things to think about this year.
- Attend meetings with college representatives in the College and Career Center
- Continue to work hard in your classes.
- Register for the SAT, SAT SUBJECT TEST(S) (March, May or June Administration) and/or the ACT . www.collegeboard.org or www.act.org
- FWHS CODE IS 070186 (indicating this code will ensure FWHS receives a copy of your scores).
- Participate in an individual post high school planning meeting with your school counselor
- Visit the College Career Center to gather information on colleges and careers.
- Sign up to see college representatives in the College Career Center. A schedule of visiting college representatives can be accessed through Family Connection or posted in your homeroom, college career center and guidance offices.
- Use the “College Search” on Family Connection to get an initial list of colleges.
- Attend local college fairs and make appointments to visit colleges during April vacation and summer months.
- Check credits and develop a senior schedule that is relevant to your post high school plans.
- Register for the SAT SUBJECT TEST(S) in June if you are considering early decision or are completing courses for which SAT SUBJECT TEST(S) are available; for example, chemistry, math and U.S. History. www.collegeboard.org Take advantage of the four free score reports sent to colleges when registering.
- Sign up for Advanced Placement (AP) tests, if appropriate.
- Attend all School Counseling Post High School Planning Workshops
- Attend Essay Writing Workshop presented by English and School Counseling Department
- Take SAT or ACT. Please note you will be offered four free score reports when registering.
- Take AP Exams
- Take SAT SUBJECT TEST(S) in June if you are considering early decision or are considering applying to schools requiring the SAT SUBJECT TEST(S).
Please view this video regarding college planning
- Continue to work with your counselor refining your list of schools.
- Review your SAT scores with your counselor. Review your senior schedule to be sure it includes all courses necessary to accommodate your future plans.
- Ask two teachers for a letter of recommendation.
- Make appointments to visit schools in the summer.
- Establish your Common Application account at www.commonapp.org
- Continue drafting college essay (see PowerPoint below) and activity sheet
- In Family Connection, click the ABOUT ME tab and complete “Recommendation Questionnaire”. Please update your Resume.