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PSAT score-199 (ANY chance of making commeded scholar?

chachaseedschachaseeds Registered User Posts: 311 Junior Member
edited December 2013 in SAT Preparation
Did sooo bad :((((
Got a 208 on the practice PSAT
Heard the cutoff was usually around 200-202.
Live in Ohio, scored 96 percentile
When do you find out whether you got commendation or not? I know chances are pretty slim, but is winging it with a 199 still possible? /sadface
Post edited by chachaseeds on
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Replies to: PSAT score-199 (ANY chance of making commeded scholar?

  • IndigoPlateauIndigoPlateau Registered User Posts: 224 Junior Member
    On your paper there should be a box that has your total score, yours would say 199. If there is an asterisk next to your total score, then you qualified. If not then you didn't.
  • chachaseedschachaseeds Registered User Posts: 311 Junior Member
    Really? It said ont he back that if you had an asterisk, then you couldn't/didn't qualify for recognition...
  • IndigoPlateauIndigoPlateau Registered User Posts: 224 Junior Member
    Yeah that's what I meant, sorry :O got that totally backwards.
  • chachaseedschachaseeds Registered User Posts: 311 Junior Member
    Wait.... so if there no asterisk, then I qualified for Commended Scholar? Sounds wayy too good to bee true, since last year the cutoff was 201.
  • 1995Andrew1995Andrew Registered User Posts: 126 Junior Member
    No Sorry. No asterisk just means that you are eligible to gain national merit recognition, but doesn't necessarily mean you scored high enough. It just verifies you are a junior, are a citizen of the U.S., etc. And sorry to say chachaseeds, but it seems like you have a very slim chance of being commended. Here's a link of the past years for commended. National Merit Scholarships

    And it looks like it ranged from 201-202 the last few years. So you'll have to pray.
  • MaterMiaMaterMia Registered User Posts: 1,155 Senior Member
    To be honest, commended is a nice line for your resume, but that is about it. Really. Not the end of the world - just move on and focus on the SAT and/or ACT.
  • SuperCuberSuperCuber Registered User Posts: 243 Junior Member
    Yeah I can second that - unless you're worried about the money (and only some finalists get it anyways) - National Merit Scholar, even Finalist, doesn't do much at all for your application. Don't worry about it.
  • MaterMiaMaterMia Registered User Posts: 1,155 Senior Member
    Well - there are still lots of great scholarships for Finalists (some for semi) so that is worthwhile - if you want to attend one of those schools. Commended - again - a line on a resume - nothing more.
  • clapumaclapuma Registered User Posts: 102 Junior Member
    My prediction is that commended scholar cutoff for the 2011 test will be 200.

    I was able to find the selection index percentile ranges for 6 previous years (2003-2006, 2008, & 2010). In each case but one, the commended cutoff was at the highest selection index number for the 96th percentile range. For example, with the 2008 test (2010 graduates), scores between 198 and 201 fell within the 96th percentile nationally and the commended cutoff was 201. The only exception I saw in the years I pulled was for the 2003 test. That year the 96th percentile range was 200-203 and it appears the commended cutoff was 202.

    The 96th percentile range for 2011 is 197-200. So a commended cut off of 200 seems probable. However, since the 96th percentile this year covers a range of 4 different scores, instead of the more typical 3, there is at least a slight chance that the commended cutoff could be one point lower (as in 2003), making the cutoff 199.

    By the way, based on the percentage ranges for the 2011 test, I also predict most state cutoffs will drop. The 99% range for the 2010 test was 214-223 (224 and above was 99+%). This year the 99% range is 211-221, a noticeable drop.
  • biochemtxbiochemtx Registered User Posts: 78 Junior Member
    Commended is absolutely worthless. The PSAT is only valuable if you reach NMS and get some scholarship $$$$ out of it. Trust me, I had a 200 PSAT last year and missed commended, but ended up with a 2250 SAT so even if I had made commended it would have meant nothing. Just do well on the SAT
  • clapumaclapuma Registered User Posts: 102 Junior Member
    I should clarify that by "state cutoff" I mean state cutoff for National Merit. Using California as an example, in the 6 years I reviewed, the CA cutoff was anywhere between 2-5 points below the top of the 99% range each year. Since the very top of the 99% range this year is 221 (which was last year's cutoff for CA), it seems unlikely that CA's cutoff would go up as it would put CA into the 99+ percentile range. Possible, but not very probable.
  • IncorrigibleIncorrigible - Posts: 91 Junior Member
    Oh wait, the cutoffs are supposed to go DOWN this year???

    YAY! :D

    I'm in a state whose most recent cutoff was 211; my current score is 213 (higher than the highest cutoff score in state history, which was 212 in ~2006, i.e a million years ago). My score is close enough to the cutoff, however, to make me and my parents VERY nervous. For us, NMF would mean RIDICULOUS CA$H for College, so this matters a lot to us!

    But I guess now I can worry less...? Maybe? I hope?

    Also, let me get this straight . . . Commended is top 96% to high 98%? I.e 200-210-ish? Anything above that should be safe for NMSF, right?
  • clapumaclapuma Registered User Posts: 102 Junior Member
    Incorrigible: Don’t cash in your college fund or anything, but I would say you have reason to be cautiously optimistic.

    No one can know for sure yet how any given state’s student population performed this year. But looking at the national percentiles you can tell how good a given selection index score is compared to prior years. Had you scored a 213 last year you would have been in the 98th percentile nationally. See:

    http://professionals.collegeboard.com/profdownload/understanding-psat-nmsqt-scores.pdf

    But this year your 213 puts you a full 3 points into the 99th percentile range nationally. See:

    http://www.bernardsboe.com/Guidance/CMFiles/Docs/PSAT%20Percentiles%20&%20Mean%20Scores%202011.pdf

    Similarly, a 211 last year would have been the 3rd highest score in the 98th percentile, while this year the 3rd highest score in the 98th percentile is a mere 208.

    Thus, your state would need a dramatic increase in performance relative to the nation for you not to make National Merit with a score of 213. I supposed that could happen if your state invested substantial new resources in the last year to help its students prepare for the PSAT or something like that. But a change of that magnitude would have to be something beyond the normal year-to-year fluctuation in results.
  • MaterMiaMaterMia Registered User Posts: 1,155 Senior Member
    The state scores vary pretty widely ... our state held flat at 211 for several years, and jumped to 213 last year. This year's test sounds like the curve was pretty harsh- especially writing, so based on what I've read, I don't think scores will be going up - holding flat or going down would be a good guess, but it's just a guess.
  • MaterMiaMaterMia Registered User Posts: 1,155 Senior Member
    BTW - my son missed NMF by one point - and he ended up with several merit scholarship choices - so don't despair if you don't make it.
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