College madness is in the air. Seniors are frantically deciding on universities while juniors are stressing about important meetings with their counselors. Along with this time of year comes the PSAT. This week on Oct.17, students will be setting their alarm clocks to get to school on time…on a Saturday. 

     “I’m taking the PSAT because I think it’s good to be able to see what I need to study for next year. I can see how I’m doing. Believe me, I’m not taking it just so I can wake up early on a Saturday morning,” Amanda Cruz said.
     The PSAT is a Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test. Statistics show that students who take the PSAT twice are more likely to score better on their SAT. Results like these are probably the driving force that motivates students to sign up for the PSAT.
     “It helped me in the actual SAT test because it showed me the format and structure of the SAT,” CJ Calabrese said.
      Head counselor Mrs. Julie Poe agrees that the PSAT is a great option for sophomores and juniors who are looking for some additional experience before taking the SAT.
     “It allows the student to see the types of questions that will be on the SAT. It gives them a feel for what the test will be like. You can see what your strengths and weaknesses are. It really is a big advantage to those who take the PSAT. I would strongly recommend signing up for it, especially if you are interested in going to a 4 year university,” Poe said.
     The PSAT measures critical writing, reading and math skills. Colleges will not see the results of the PSAT, but the student will be able to see what he/she missed on the test. Students will need to bring an ID card, a calculator and two No. 2 pencils. Students need to be at school by 7:30 a.m. and the test should be over at 11:30 a.m. Also, there is no food or drink allowed, including water.
     “I will be calling students down individually this week to remind them of what they need to bring for the PSAT and give any other information concerning the test. Remember that it is important to get to school early. If you are late, you can only take it if the actual testing has not started yet,” Mrs. Bert Bryant, college and career center advisor, said. 

          Sign ups for the PSAT have already taken place. However, there will be other opportunities to take it. The next PSAT will be given October 2010.