PSAT Goes Digital
By Emily Anastacio and Carissa Hazzard
The new online format of the PSAT has proved to be very different from the paper version that we have been familiar with for decades. With the digital PSAT, instead of a proctor telling you when to move on, students are now timed on each section through their individual devices. Additionally, calculators are now allowed on every math section!
Though many students liked that they could keep track of their own time and they could use a calculator for all math problems, there were a few setbacks. For the weeks leading up to the PSAT, many students were struggling to download the BlueBook app, the app to take the PSAT, from Self Service. Students were racing to get new iPads before the test because they were not allowed to use any device other than an iPad provided by WPHS.
On the day of the 2023 PSAT, students arrived at WPHS for the test thinking that it would be just like past years, but they were mistaken. When the test was about to start, an announcement was made, telling everyone who had an iPad with the newest IOS update to go to the College and Career Center to switch out their devices. When a flood of people appeared at the College and Career Center, they were told that there were not enough iPads for the large number of students in need of one.
These students were sent back to their testing rooms and were told that there was a possibility that their tests would not submit, and that they would have to retake it on a different day. This upset many students because nobody wants to take a three-hour test just to see that it won't be scored!
As this was the first year of the digital PSAT exam, mistakes and issues were expected, and students and faculty did their best to resolve the problems. Next year’s test is anticipated to run much smoother since everybody is more experienced with the latest layout and formatting!