By Dante Yasui,
Some Davis High students will be taking the PSAT on Oct. 18. Although many will be be juniors, a few sophomores will be taking the test as well.
Juniors who score well enough to win the National Merit award can be offered college scholarships. Students do not have this opportunity as sophomores, but some still take it before junior year as a way to prepare.
“I think that the PSAT is a necessary source of stress,” said senior Matthew Lara, a National Merit finalist. “It helps prepare for the academic gauntlet that junior year–with all its standardized tests–really is.”
Lara used the PSAT as a tool to learn about the standardized testing process.
However, with the new changes to the SAT scheduled for spring of 2016, the questions sophomores experience this weekend may not fully prepare them for the new material.
According to collegeboard.org, the changes will include optional completion of the essay and scoring based only on the amount of right answers, as opposed to deductions for wrong answers.
DHS head counselor Courtenay Tessler doesn’t advise sophomores to take the PSAT. “There is enough stress placed on students without us adding to their stress level.” Tessler said. “Taking the PSAT as a junior is age-appropriate.”
Sophomore Eliot Williams said that his parents want him to answer review questions beforehand. “This is the practice test for the practice test.” Williams said. “I don’t think I should have to study for a practice.”