28 Aug 2019

US Higher Education – PSAT/NMSQT Registration

Dear Year 10 – 12 Students, Parents and Guardians,

US Higher Education – PSAT/NMSQT Registration

Wednesday 16th October 2:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

I am writing this letter to invite students to our PSAT/NMSQT test administration, which will take place on Wednesday 16th October from 2.30 p.m. through to approx. 5:30 p.m.

Background Information

For many students, the PSAT represents the first chance to take a test similar to the SAT or ACT under official, timed conditions. As a result, PSAT scores can give students a good indication of how they might score on the SAT if they were to take the test with no additional practice or preparation. It is important to keep in mind that the PSAT has no official role in college admissions. However, it is worth taking seriously because it offers a first glimpse at “official” scores — and is a National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (NMSQT).

The SAT test scores are one of the factors colleges and universities consider in gauging students’ abilities and in selecting students for admission. For American citizens who are in their second to last year of high school, it is also the first step in being considered for a National Merit Scholarship.

The results of this test will be posted to the school and should arrive near the end of term. When these do arrive, I will have a meeting with students to pass back their test booklet and explain to them what their results mean to them if they are applying to universities in the United States.

The test fee is HK$250.00. This is collected by the school and then paid to the test administering company (ETS). In return, ETS will provide data on how individual students have performed in relation to the entire test-taking population. We can then use the results report to provide useful feedback to the students.

I would like to emphasise that this test is optional. If you wish to participate in this test, please fill in the reply slip below with payment on or before Tuesday 10th September. Additionally, it is very similar to the new SAT format and is made up of multiple-choice questions in four main sections – Reading / Writing & Language / Maths (without calculator) / Maths (with calculator).

On the day, please ensure that students are ready for the test by bringing at least 3 sharpened 2B pencils and a calculator, with fresh or backup batteries (which will need to be set to ‘press to test’ mode).

There will also be an informal information meeting at the end of the test where parents and students will be introduced to the U.S. Higher Education preparation programme at the school and where you will have a chance to ask questions. This will take place from approx. 5.30 p.m. – 6.00 p.m. If you are interested in attending, please indicate this on the registration form.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the test or any other related matter, please feel free to contact me by email or by visiting the Careers/HE office.

Kind regards,

Mr. David Stott
Head of Careers & Higher Education
Sha Tin College