Advice needed!

<p>I'm a rising Junior and am preparing to take the PSAT this October. I really want to make the cut-off for National Merit (which is 214 in Illinois). I've been studying for a couple of months now and have noticed that I usually encounter the following problems:</p>

<ol>
<li><p>I panic. Funny that this is one of my greatest worries, but it is. On the math section, especially the multiple choice part, I start panicking when I don't know how to do something. Of course, I skip it--but this not only lowers my confidence, it also makes me lose focus. As a result, I find myself getting problems wrong that I know I'm capable of doing. </p></li>
<li><p>This is related to 1: so basically, time is an issue on the math section. For some reason, I find myself barely having time to finish everything and I rarely have time to check on the multiple choice section. It's not that I haven't practiced; I've done the entire math practice parts in both Barrons as well as McGraw Hill. </p></li>
<li><p>On the critical reading section, I usually do pretty well, but I'm pretty inconsistent. Sometimes I'll get only 3 wrong overall and sometimes I'll get 6 or more. Although getting 6 wrong is still not too bad, I would really like to achieve a level where I am consistently getting fewer than 3-4 wrong.</p></li>
</ol>

<p>So far, I've been doing the practice tests in McGraw Hill's textbook and I got a 221 on the Diagnostic test (which I think may have been intentionally easy) and a 210 (CR 68, M 64, W 78) on the practice test I took today (mostly due to silly errors on math). I don't know what to make of these scores, to be honest. (How accurate are McGraw Hill's tests anyway?)</p>

<p>Any advice would be greatly appreciated!</p>

<p>Get Gruber's Math Workbook for Math and the BB.</p>

<p>After you're done with the entire Gruber's book, you should be able to answer all questions and the time will come with that.</p>

<p>What about critical reading? And does anyone know how accurate McGraw Hill's PSAT practice tests are? For example, if I can get over 214 on one of those, is it likely that I will do the same on the actual PSAT?</p>

<p>I'd suggest to do as many practice tests as you can. I'm also taking the PSAT in october. </p>

<p>Amazon.com:</a> The Official SAT Study Guide, 2nd edition (9780874478525): The College Board: Books</p>