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October 14 PSAT Curve!

Dis3456Dis3456 35 replies7 threads Junior Member
When will the curve for the October 14 (2020) PSAT be released? I am assuming that we have to wait until scores are released in December, but I am hoping that the curve will be available at an earlier time. My daughter, a junior, felt good about today's test, but there were a few questions on the verbal section where she felt uncertain.
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Replies to: October 14 PSAT Curve!

  • Happytimes2001Happytimes2001 2496 replies21 threads Senior Member
    Yep, I think you can't talk specifics but my kiddo felt the verbal section was suprisingly odd as well. Usually not an issue. Last year, the October test had a math curve thing where the section was off. The scores were adjusted accordingly.
    We're in a high baseline score state so either way you can only get a few wrong to qualify.
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  • Dis3456Dis3456 35 replies7 threads Junior Member
    edited October 16
    Yep, I think you can't talk specifics but my kiddo felt the verbal section was suprisingly odd as well. Usually not an issue. Last year, the October test had a math curve thing where the section was off. The scores were adjusted accordingly.
    We're in a high baseline score state so either way you can only get a few wrong to qualify.

    I am really curious how they are going to handle the issue of testing availability and the effect that will have on the typical baselines. From what I have heard in our area, only students who are in the running for NMF are sitting for the exam, and that will skew the cutoff. Normally, the SSI is a good indicator or whether or not a student in a particular state will be a NMF, but I think all bets are off this year.
    edited October 16
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  • Happytimes2001Happytimes2001 2496 replies21 threads Senior Member
    I read somewhere that it's based on the last three years so the number of test takers this year ( which will probably be low) will be averaged out. Google PSAT % and it came up under that ( or something similar).

    Yes, agreed that many schools this year are only allowing their highest scorers to take the test, But, there are states and areas which will have all take it due to low Covid numbers, like during a normal year. Depending on the cycles of Covid and population density, some schools will have no issues with all students taking the test.

    Any of the factors can skew the cutoff in a particular state. But if you factor in that there is a huge difference between lowest and highest states, you have to think that kids need to be stellar in any case to get it.
    You also have to factor in that tests are not all the same. So you can take a test with a huge curve or one that is flatter. Still, can be a factor of "luck" if it comes down to a handful of questions or less.
    I'm glad my kid has already taken the PSAT ( last year as a Sophomore and this year as a Junior) In this Covid year, anything checked off is a good thing. Our neighbor, who is a Senior has been trying to take the SAT since last March. Has signed up every month. Talk about stress.
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  • RichInPittRichInPitt 3214 replies53 threads Senior Member
    Dis3456 wrote: »
    I am hoping that the curve will be available at an earlier time.

    From the wayback machine, last year’s report had the score conversion tables as of December 11. I suspect that’s when it was released, along with the test scores.

    Versions from late October don’t have them, but there are no versions captured between those dates, so it may be earlier. But if WM is triggered by content change, 12/11 was the date last year.

    I’m curious - why the desire to have them?
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  • RichInPittRichInPitt 3214 replies53 threads Senior Member
    edited October 17
    CB has always had an alternate way to qualify, if you had to miss the PSAT. They haven’t published it yet for this year, but it will likely be more widely used.
    Dis3456 wrote: »
    From what I have heard in our area, only students who are in the running for NMF are sitting for the exam, and that will skew the cutoff. .

    My understanding is that cutoffs are based on quantities, not percentiles, so a skew to higher-scoring students taking the test shouldn’t have an impact on selecting the top X scores.

    Dis3456 wrote: »
    Normally, the SSI is a good indicator or whether or not a student in a particular state will be a NMF, but I think all bets are off this year.

    AFAIK, SSI is precisely how you qualify to be a semi-finalist. (Finalist requires a few other non-PSAT factors.) Why do you believe it’s only a “good indicator”?
    edited October 17
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  • Dis3456Dis3456 35 replies7 threads Junior Member
    edited October 19
    I read somewhere that it's based on the last three years so the number of test takers this year ( which will probably be low) will be averaged out. Google PSAT % and it came up under that ( or something similar).

    I found that information that after I posted my original question, and that is definitely extremely helpful to know. I wonder how many alternate entries there will be this year, and if there is a large percentage, I am curious how National Merit will handle those. I have not seen that addressed anywhere.
    RichInPitt wrote: »
    Dis3456 wrote: »
    I am hoping that the curve will be available at an earlier time.

    From the wayback machine, last year’s report had the score conversion tables as of December 11. I suspect that’s when it was released, along with the test scores.

    Versions from late October don’t have them, but there are no versions captured between those dates, so it may be earlier. But if WM is triggered by content change, 12/11 was the date last year.

    I’m curious - why the desire to have them?

    Thank you. I am curious because I have a student who will be in the running for NMF. She has taken the SAT twice since August, and she missed fewer than 4 questions on each test. She feels as if the PSAT went very well, and without a harsh curve (or anything else that drastically changes the cutoff this year), I think that her chances are excellent. There was one question in the writing section where she felt uncertain, but other than that, she thinks that she could have gotten everything correct.
    RichInPitt wrote: »
    AFAIK, SSI is precisely how you qualify to be a semi-finalist. (Finalist requires a few other non-PSAT factors.) Why do you believe it’s only a “good indicator”?

    I said that the SI would be a "good indicator" because when the SIs are released in December, the cutoffs for NMSF are not known. With more PSAT test dates, a different number of testers than normal, and the possibility of a much larger percentage of alternate entries, the SI will be a good indicator of whether or not your student will qualify. Once the official cutoffs are announced, you are right - they are more than just a good indicator. I have not seen anyone (even in the blogoshpere) comment on what they think will happen to the qualifying cutoff scores this year, and this year will be extra tricky because an entire test administration will occur after the December scores release. We are eager to start putting together a list of colleges!

    edited October 19
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  • FrozenMaineMomFrozenMaineMom 106 replies22 threads Junior Member
    Now that there is a Jan. 26th date being offered for the PSAT, I assume the SI will be announced later than normal? My daughter was quarantined (along with many of her classmates)and therefore not allowed to take the one that her school offered yesterday and so we are waiting to learn if the school is going to be able to get signed up for the January one.
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  • Dis3456Dis3456 35 replies7 threads Junior Member
    Now that there is a Jan. 26th date being offered for the PSAT, I assume the SI will be announced later than normal? My daughter was quarantined (along with many of her classmates)and therefore not allowed to take the one that her school offered yesterday and so we are waiting to learn if the school is going to be able to get signed up for the January one.

    For students who took the test in October, scores (SI) will be released on December 7/8. I am not sure when the release date will be for the January test admission. I also am not sure how this will affect the timing of the release of the qualifying scores by state.
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