About what score do u need to become a national achievement scholar?
Since the National Merit Scholars are determined through the top percentage, the actual score varies from year to year.
Last year ( school year of 05-06) the lowest finalist was i believe 218 out of a max of 240. However, there are also some students who were close to the scores so they receive a "commended" rank.
If you're talking about the national merit scholar, it's like the top .5% or something. Yeah, as in the top 99.5% pretty much.
National Merit status is done on a state level, so what score is required for Scholar status depends on your state. If you are in a state where the schools are good, say, Massachusetts or Jersey, then the score you need is pretty high, but if you are in Louisiana then you dont need as high a score. The exact scores for each state can be found on line if you google for them
About 1.4 million kids are tested for National Merit scores each year (roughly the top 1/3rd of USA HS students). About 17,000 receive National Merit Scholar status. Since there are over 35,000 secondary schools in the USA that means that half the high schools in America do not have even a single NM Scholar in a given year.
In addition to doing well on the PSAT, you must also do well on the SAT and get good recommendations. The average cut-off for semifinalist is around 215. but here's what happened last year, find your state and that'll give you a good indicator of whether or not you have a chance: