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More than three decades of data are conclusive. Students who achieve National Merit Commended or National Merit Semifinalist status double to triple the gains anticipated by the College Board, makers of the PSAT/NMSQT. Note the following two research studies.

Beginning in 1989 and continuing to the present, in one of our larger Illinois schools we have evaluated sophomore to junior year growth on actual PSAT/NMSQT exams for students enrolled in our PSAT 1520 program. In the early years of our research, the College Board anticipated gains of 8.4 points for students testing in their sophomore year and retesting in their junior year. Since the revision of the PSAT/NMSQT in 2005, the College Board anticipates gains of 10.6 for students testing in their sophomore year and retesting in their junior year. Typical of past years, our most recent gains were 27.3 points for Merit qualifiers and 23.3 points for Commended students.

 

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