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National Merit COMMENDED :(

InvisibleMan023InvisibleMan023 Registered User Posts: 268 Junior Member
edited May 2009 in College Admissions
So we got our National Merit College Plans Reporting Service letter from high school. And this week i was reminded of my poor performance on the PSAT. It was just one of those "off" days, and I actually cried during the test because I knew this was a disaster. PSAT was probably one of the biggest failures in my high school career since there was a lot of preparation (and subsequent expectation).
So how much will not being a Semifinalist affect my college app?
And what does being a Semifinalist really do?
Post edited by InvisibleMan023 on

Replies to: National Merit COMMENDED :(

  • RobDRobD Registered User Posts: 5,061 Senior Member
    You won't find out if you're a NMSF until August/September. Everyone who scores over the national cutline (roughly 200-202) gets the commended letter now even those who will be named NMSF in the Fall.
  • yummymangoyummymango Registered User Posts: 490 Member
    It will not affect your college app much. I think it really depends on your grades, SAT, and essays. Every year, our school has 6-10 semifinalists, and last year (the Class of 2008), most of the semifinalists did not get into their top choices. I feel that their essays weren't as strong as those of other applicants. On the other hands, the semifinalists from the year before that and this year got into caliber colleges (Top 20). Personally, I don't think their being semifinalists helped them at all. Haha. What I'm trying to say is, though, that your not being one will not prevent you from being accepted by Cornell, let's say. The Val in 2007, at my school, did not take the PSAT but got into Harvard. Haha, so don't sweat about it.
  • username17username17 Registered User Posts: 91 Junior Member
    it's the results of a test you only take once... nmsf is a nice thing to have, but i think colleges realize your APPLICATION is a better indicator of who you are rather than the results of one test. at least, i was commended, and i don't think being a sf would have changed my college admissions results at all.
  • bclintonkbclintonk Registered User Posts: 7,337 Senior Member
    Being a Semifinalist doesn't do anything except qualify you to compete for Finalist. If you're a Finalist some colleges will give you automatic merit awards, but generally not the top schools. Semifinalist or Finalist doesn't mean squat on your college applications at the top schools. Generally your SAT and ACT scores count for a lot more as they're typically more recent and more comprehensive. They're the "for real" tests whereas the PSAT is just what it says it is, a "preliminary" test to help you get ready for the SAT. It's just that it's also used by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation to determine who qualifies for National Merit Scholarships. But since you're not going to get a National Merit Scholarship, it doesn't amount to a hill of beans. And you know what? Most of the kids who get into HYPSM etc. aren't National Merit Finalists either.
  • NorthstarmomNorthstarmom Registered User Posts: 24,853 Senior Member
    Being finalist doesn't matter when it comes to top schools, which get so many applicants who are NMS finalist that one doesn't stand out in the pool for having that. The top schools also know that finalist depends only on one test, so it's very easy to have had an off day.

    Finalist matters for lower ranked schools that may give merit awards based on it.

    And making NM Commended isn't considered having a poor score. Sheesh....
  • Gryffon5147Gryffon5147 Registered User Posts: 3,765 Senior Member
    You gotta be frakking kidding me... grow a spine for your own sake...

    I also got "merely" commended, was the only person in my school even to get that, and wiped gum off my shoe with the little scrap of paper notifying me of my status... then I got into a pretty good school.

    Please tell me you actually didn't cry during the test at least...
  • xStevenxSteven Registered User Posts: 1,400 Senior Member
    What a pathetic baby. If you call the PSAT your biggest failure, that's kind of sad.
  • InvisibleMan023InvisibleMan023 Registered User Posts: 268 Junior Member
    lol, damn, hostile crowd. No problem tho. First of all, I KNOW i am commended, because i am in Texas and i know the usual cutoff and im not even close. 2nd, I didnt technically CRY but i definitely teared up, and i became really frustrated because i had put soo much work into it. I also scored in the 99 percentile on the SAT, so why shouldnt i PSAT be the same? its the expectation of doing well and i didnt do well. and third to xSteven, what other failures would i have in high school? not gettin laid? lol. PSAT is definitely my biggest failure in high school. I choked on a test that i shouldve aced.
  • xStevenxSteven Registered User Posts: 1,400 Senior Member
    It's just sad that you're beating yourself up over it to that extent. <_< It's the PSAT.. not even the SAT that schools use for admissions..
  • 4th house4th house Registered User Posts: 380 Member
    S1 got finalist, was rejected by 8 schools and is at Trinity now (a school we can't say enough good things about).

    S2 "only" got commended, applied to 16 schools, was rejected nowhere, and will be attending Princeton in the fall.

    Does this tell you how much National Merit matters for admissions?
  • powerbombpowerbomb Registered User Posts: 3,364 Senior Member
    For WHATEVER reason, why would you cry over PSATs? especially during the middle of it...
  • PoseurPoseur Registered User Posts: 3,331 Senior Member
    ahahhahaha you prepared and didn't do well?

    have fun living a life of effort followed by mediocrity
    and crying
  • NotToo_CrazyNotToo_Crazy Registered User Posts: 324 Junior Member
    seriously, getting commended is better than getting nothing at all. like me.

    But in the long run, your PSAT score will mean absolutely nothing - I promise you.
  • BigGBigG Registered User Posts: 3,885 Senior Member
    I hope that PSAT is your biggest failure in life.
  • stephennnstephennn Registered User Posts: 2,103 Senior Member
    lol are you serious? i didn't get anything for my PSAT when i was a junior (178)

    no one cares if you don't have it, but if you have it it's a plus.
This discussion has been closed.