PSAT Registration: Sign Up in 3 Easy Steps

Many high school students take the PSAT to prepare for the SAT. Learn how to register for the PSAT, where you can take it, and how much it costs.

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by Nancy Parode

Updated September 12, 2022

Edited by Tyler Epps
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PSAT Registration: Sign Up in 3 Easy Steps
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The PSAT/NMSQT serves several purposes. In addition to being a practice SAT, the PSAT is the National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (NMSQT) — the gateway to competing for National Merit Scholarships. You can use your PSAT scores to identify your biggest weaknesses and create an SAT study plan.

The PSAT is offered three days in October. To register, you'll need to find a high school offering the test and sign up there.

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Ready to start your journey?

Do You Register for the PSAT Online or in Person?

Although test-takers sign up for most College Board tests online, you must register for the PSAT through your high school or a local school if your school doesn't administer the exam.

Most students will register for the PSAT at their school. Some high schools require you to register online, while others ask students to sign up in person. Contact your school counselor for PSAT registration deadlines and details.

If you're an international or homeschooled student, you must find a high school that offers the PSAT and register to take the test there. Try to start the registration process at least four months before the mid-October test date.

How to Sign Up for the PSAT: 3-Step Guide

To sign up for the PSAT, you'll need to search for a school that plans to administer the PSAT, note the school's test date, and register and pay for the exam at that school.

1. Use the College Board's School Search Tool

The first step in registering for the PSAT is finding a testing location. The College Board's school search tool can help you determine whether your high school plans to offer the PSAT.

You can search by school name or College Board code and state. You can also narrow down your search results by including a city and ZIP code. International students can search by country for schools offering the PSAT outside the U.S.

Your search results will include schools' information about four different tests. The second column from the left will show you which schools are offering the PSAT/NMSQT this year.

2. Determine the PSAT Test Date and Location

The search results will show you possible test locations and dates. Most schools offer the PSAT on the primary test day. This date is always a weekday in October.

Some schools administer the PSAT on the Saturday test day, which is the Saturday after the primary test day. And a few schools may offer the PSAT on the alternate test day, a weekday later in October.

Check with your high school counselor for more information on available PSAT test dates.

3. Register and Pay for the PSAT

Your school will provide information on PSAT registration, usually through the counseling office. Depending on your school's policy, you can register online or in person.

If you plan to take the PSAT at a school you do not attend, call the school four months before your test date and speak with a counselor about registering for the PSAT.

Some schools cover the cost of taking the PSAT (currently $18 plus school administration fees), while others do not. High school juniors who qualify for free or reduced-cost school lunch or meet similar income criteria may qualify for PSAT fee waivers.

Frequently Asked Questions About PSAT Registration

How do you cancel PSAT registration?

Because your school administers the PSAT, you should contact your school counselor to find out how to cancel your registration.

Some schools allow students to cancel their PSAT registration and get their money back before the mid-September cutoff date for ordering testing materials from the College Board, but others do not. To learn more about PSAT refunds, talk with your school counselor.

Can you register late for the PSAT?

It depends. Some schools offer the PSAT on alternate and primary test days and order testing materials accordingly, while others do not. Schools may not order testing materials from the College Board after the mid-September order cutoff date.

Contact your school counselor to learn more about late registration. If your school does not accept late PSAT signups, use the College Board search tool to find nearby schools offering the PSAT. If you miss all the October test dates, you'll have to wait until the following year to take the PSAT.

What is the PSAT registration deadline?

The PSAT registration deadline varies by school. Schools offering the PSAT set their registration deadlines. Contact your school's counseling office or testing coordinator to find out when you must register and pay for the PSAT.

If you are requesting testing accommodations, such as extra time, reading assistance, or blood sugar testing time, you must contact your school before the third week of August to ask for those accommodations and provide documentation. Your school must meet the College Board's accommodations request deadline to get approval for your testing accommodations.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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