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PSAT: About the exam and test dates 2023

Updated: Mar 31, 2023

PSAT (Preliminary Scholastic Admission Test), also known as NMSQT (National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test), is an exam co-sponsored by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) and the College Board.



Many questions come with this test. What’s the difference between both exams? Why should one appear for PSAT? When should they give PSAT? Is it necessary?


To understand the basis of the PSAT, one should know that PSAT is considered a precursor for the SAT. As SAT is a common requirement for college admissions, PSAT is considered SAT practice run and acts as a qualifying test for the National Merit Scholarship Program.


PSAT determines the students who will be selected for the National Merit Scholarships, and the top scorers are awarded Scholarship money. This Scholarship will later help with a student’s college tuition.


The 11th and some 10th graders can take PSAT as a practice test to prepare for SAT in their Senior year and qualify for a Scholarship.


The content and structure of the PSAT are pretty similar to SAT, but some differences set it apart from SAT.

  1. The exams have different scoring ranges. PSAT scoring ranges from 320 to 1520 compared to SAT, which is 400 to 1600. However, the score scale remains the same for both exams.

  2. The difficulty level of the PSAT is considered slightly lower than the SAT.

  3. The number of questions asked in the PSAT is lesser than SAT. The exam is divided into 3 sections: Reading, Writing and Language, and Math test. Also, there is no essay section in PSAT.

  4. The duration for PSAT is 2hrs 45 minutes without any breaks in between.

  5. PSAT is conducted annually in October; the scores are available for students to access by December.


Although the PSAT 2023 dates aren’t released yet, it can be predicted around the middle of the month October, i.e., between 11 October 2023 and 16 October 2023.


PSAT scores aren’t sent to colleges, so it is considered a no-stress practice for SAT.


One should get familiar with the structure of the PSAT and start preparing for the test beforehand if one wishes to achieve good results.




Have some questions about the SAT? Check out our latest blog on SAT Exam 2023


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