Check out, another site I earn revenue from ads on

What is the National Society of Highschool Scholars?

The National Society of High School Scholars (NSHS) is an academic honor society that recognizes, serves, and networks the most outstanding student scholars in over 23,000 high schools across 170 nations.

But did you know many other organizations recognize academic achievement? The National Honor Soceity offerred by high schools is one example.

NSHSS is one such organization—and it offers something unique above and beyond what others can offer: membership as a way of showing your commitment and instilling a lifelong dedication to continuing your education after high school graduation.

When it comes to being a high school scholar, everyone has their definition of what that means. For some, it’s simply getting good grades.  To others, it involves participating in extracurricular activities that enrich one’s life beyond the classroom.

national society of highschool scholars

The NSHSS is an American honor society founded in 1910 to recognize high school students who exemplify excellence in scholarship, leadership, service, and character.

It currently has over 50 chapters nationwide and more than 6300 members from all 50 states plus Washington D.C., Puerto Rico, Guam, and U.S. Virgin Islands, who range from 11th grade through college seniors.

THE BENEFITS OF National Society of Highschool Scholars MEMBERSHIP

When you join the National Society of Highschool Scholars, you’re joining a community of scholars who are all working toward the same goal: to make this world a better place.

You’ll have the opportunity to network with other scholars and share your knowledge with them.

It’s also an opportunity for you to learn from some of these members because they have been through the same things you are going through now.

The National Society of High School Scholars is one of the most prestigious honors organizations in the country; it has been around since 1954 and has grown into something much more than just a simple organization for high school students.


Just what does it mean to be a high school scholar? It’s not just about being able to do the work, although that’s an integral part.

Instead, it’s about excelling in academics and leadership and demonstrating a commitment to community service.

As you can see from this list of criteria, a top scholar must be a leader committed to serving others and improving their school.


Membership is based on academic achievement. Any student who has achieved scholastic distinction is eligible for membership in NSHSS.

NSHSS takes pride in recognizing the achievements of top scholars and providing access to exclusive benefits and experiences throughout students’ high school careers.

Membership provides students with a broader array of resources to help them reach their academic goals, including:

  • A strong network of peers with similar interests, values, and career aspirations
  • Opportunities for service learning through our various community service programs
  • Educational enrichment programs that enhance classroom learning experiences

Is the National Society of High School Scholars a legitimate organization?

Yes, the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS) is a legitimate honor society. It boasts over 7.5 million members from more than 170 nations and provides resources for college-bound students.

The Honor Society has been in existence since 2002. James Lewis and Claes Nobel (a member of Claes Nobel’s Nobel Prize family) founded the society to recognize the bright young minds that will lead the world in future.

Unfortunately, National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS) is quite a fraud. Although it is legitimate, it sends invitations out to thousands of high school students. It uses a generous PSAT/SAT cutoff to do this and attempts to get them to pay money to join. It’s not competitive and is more of a signal that it can be paid money. This won’t increase your chances of getting in and it doesn’t make any difference to your admissions profile.

NHS through your school can be a better honor society because it is more competitive, based upon real merit, doesn’t require payment for anything (which is often a sign that something’s not competitive).




If you’re thinking about joining and are a home-schooled student, or if you attend a private school, there’s no need to worry. You can still join our society.

All our members are very welcoming and will be happy to help guide you through joining.

The only thing required for membership is completing an application form.

When completing the form, please be sure to provide us with some information about yourself and why you wish to join us here at this national-level organization for high school scholars across Canada.

DOES the National Society of Highschool Scholars HAVE ANY RELATIONSHIP WITH NSA?

No, NSHSS is not related to NSA, and NSHSS does not have any relationship with NSA.

NSHA is a national organization, and NSHSS is a local chapter of that organization founded in 1999 by two high school students from my hometown who were interested in starting an annual academic competition for high school students across northern New Jersey.


The National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS) is not a national honor society.

It does not have chapters at individual high schools, and it does not offer members any awards or certificates.

NSHSS also does not award scholarships based on outstanding academic achievement, nor will you receive an invitation to join based on your grades or test scores.

Instead, NSHSS is a group of students who have achieved certain thresholds in their academic careers and would like to gather together as an organization where they can share their achievements with others who have done the same.


Many people ask why the NSHSS charges a fee for membership. Here are some of the reasons:

  • Society must pay for itself. To keep our costs down, we rely on member dues to help pay for our annual awards ceremony, banquet, and other activities.
  • The Society needs funds to give out scholarships and grants to attract members who are not only interested in scholarships but also want to make a difference in their community through volunteerism and service learning projects.
  • We also need money to offer essay contests on topics important to high school students, such as bullying prevention or financial literacy education programs.

To join NSHSS, you must receive an invitation. If you do not receive an invitation, it is impossible to enter.

High school educators (teachers, principals, counselors) can nominate students in grades 9-12 who meet any one of the criteria below. After registering as an NSHSS Educator , educators may nominate students.

  • 3.5 Cumulative Grade Point Average (4.0 Scale) or Higher (or equivalent such like 88 on a 100 point scale).
  • 26 ACT score and higher
  • Score at least 4 on any AP exam
  • Scores of 40 or more on the total IB combined test scores
  • Class’s top 10%
  • 1280 SAT Score or Higher (new exam 2016, 2016)*
  • *1150 PSAT score (or higher) (new exam 2016).
  • *Scores from the older exam (SAT score 1750 and higher; PSAT score 200 and higher) will be accepted

To finalize your membership you must pay the membership fee and submit your application form.

If you are not a member of NSHSS, they can’t accept your payment or fill out the paperwork on your behalf.

If these two conditions are met (being invited by NSHSS and paying the membership fee), then they will process your paperwork and send it up through their system until it reaches someone at the top who can approve applications from prospective members like yourself

—and if this happens before their deadline has expired (which should happen automatically when someone receives an invitation), then congratulations.

You’re now part of one of America’s oldest and most prestigious institutions for high school students everywhere.

Get people inspired to join NSHSS.

You may be wondering what the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS) is and why you should join.

If you are, then this section is for you.

  • Why should I join?

Membership in NSHSS offers many benefits to its members:

Access to a vast network of peers who are passionate about similar goals that you share.

-A chance to showcase your talents within an active community of scholars across the country.

-Opportunities for leadership roles within our organization and your chapter or school.


Other resources:

There are a lot of other programs for high schoolers that I’ve made posts about. If you are interested in medicine there are a lot of other high school programs related to science that I’ve made posts about explaining what they are. You can view my post on the Summer Science ProgramNational Youth Leadership Forum, and the National Academy Of Future Physicians. You can also read my post about medical school student loans.

About me
sarah lim

Check out, another site I earn revenue from ads on

I'm Sarah Lim
My Skills

Web Developer

Social Media + SEO