What’s a Good PSAT Score For a Sophomore?

While it might seem a bit early to start thinking about the SAT your sophomore year, you’ll earn better results if you start to prepare for your test sooner rather than later.

Signing up for the PSAT when you’re in 10th grade is a critical step you can take to help make sure you are ready for the SAT. Even though they are different tests, the PSAT and the SAT are very similar, and your scores on the PSAT will give you an estimate of how well you will do on the SAT.

When you take the PSAT as a sophomore, you will be able to see your weaknesses and strengths and have a year to prepare for your second PSAT and your first SAT.

Because your PSAT score indicates the score you are likely to receive on the SAT, you might be wondering what makes a “good” PSAT score.

The truth is that there is no specific answer. It will all depend on your own SAT and scholarship goals as well as how well you do in comparison to other sophomores taking the test. As such, there is no one size fits all score that you will want to earn.

However, while there is not an exact score that you need to reach in order to have a “good” PSAT score, a good rule of thumb is to earn a score within or above the 75th percentile.

What are PSAT percentiles?

A percentile score shows where your score falls in comparison to others. For instance, if an infant’s weight is in the 50th percentile, it means that they weigh more than 50% of other babies their age. This lets parents know whether or not they need to adjust their feeding schedules so that their babies are at a normal weight. In the same way, comparing your score with others lets you know how much work you’ll need to do to prepare for your SAT.

The reason percentile scores are used for the PSAT is to show you just how well you are doing based on your age group. If your PSAT score falls within the 25th percentile, it means that you are not doing quite as well as your peers, so you will have to put in a lot of work before it is time for you to take the SAT. If your PSAT score is in the 99th percentile or above, it means that you outscored almost every other sophomore who took the PSAT, which is a good sign that you are on the right track for scoring highly on the SAT.

In general, an okay score is one that falls in the 50th percentile, a good score is one that is in the 75th percentile, and an excellent score is one that is in the 90th percentile or above.

For sophomores, the composite score breakdown for 2020 looked like this:

Sophomore Percentile ScoresComposite Score
90%1180-1520
75%1060
50%910-920

The PSAT has a score range of 160- 760 for the Reading and Writing and the Math sections Here are the estimated scores you will need to reach the 75th percentile for each section of the PSAT according to the College Board:

Composite ScoreReading and Writing PercentileMath Percentile
750-76099+99+
720-74099+99
700-7109998
680-6909898
6709797
6609697
6509597
6409496
6309396
6209295
6109094
6008892
5908791
5808489
5708287
5608085
5507783

Based on this information, in order to reach the 75th percentile, you will need to earn at least a 550 on the math and reading sections or a composite score of 1060.

Earning a score that is within or above the 75th percentile will show you that you’re heading in the right direction when it comes to preparing for the SAT.

Preparing for the PSAT

Reaching the 75th percentile on the PSAT can be a challenge for sophomores across the nation. If your goal is to reach a high percentile so that you can prepare for the SAT and boost your chances of qualifying for the National Merit Scholarship program in the future, you should consider working with a private tutor.

In addition to SAT and ACT prep courses, Prep Expert also offers private tutoring in a variety of areas including the PSAT.

When you enroll in private PSAT tutoring, you will work with an expert instructor on developing your strengths and improving your weaknesses on the PSAT. Your tutor will help you learn all of the strategies and tips you need to earn a good score on the PSAT.

Prep Expert’s private PSAT tutoring can help you prepare for the PSAT and the SAT. Learn more or enroll today when you visit our website.