Average ACT Score: All You Need to Know

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Colleges Accepting Low ACT Scores

In the US, universities and colleges use the ACT multiple-choice exam for graduate admissions. You must take the ACT exam to graduate from an American university. The ACT exam consists of four subjects—Science, Mathematics, English, and Reading—while the fifth subject writing is optional. The ACT exam, comparable to an admissions test, is a way of methodically evaluating a student’s talents. Colleges and universities use the exam to determine a student’s eligibility for enrolment as part of the admissions process. You should also be familiar with the score, the exam syllabus, and the exam format in order to jump-start your preparation. In this blog, we will get to know about the average ACT score required in universities. 

What is the Average ACT Score?

The ACT score is used to evaluate the performance of students who submitted their papers on the same day. The ACT assigns grades between 1 to 36 for each subject area. Students don’t lose points for giving wrong answers; instead, they don’t get credit for them and do get credit for the right answers. The ACT has a 36th-score cutoff. Each section of the ACT exam is given a mark out of 36.

By combining the results from the Science, Mathematics, English, and Reading parts, the ACT composite score is determined. ACT scores are currently 20.6 on average. The ACT score range, based on a percentile system, is 1-36 score points. Percentile scoring describes a test taker’s results relative to all other test takers on that day.

Importance of Average ACT Score

Your ACT score is compared to those of other test-takers in the ACT ranking. The percentage is the proportion of test takers who obtained a score higher or equal to yours. For instance, receiving a 75% on the ACT indicates that you performed better than 75% of other test-takers.  

The percentile evaluations are crucial because they let colleges and universities compare your test results to those of other applicants. On the other hand, the ACT score varies depending on the college to which one desires to apply, making it more significant than the ranking. 

Since the typical ACT score is around 20.8, a score between 21 and 23 places you in the middle percentile. A score of 23 puts you in the running for prestigious colleges because it is higher than the national average. However, a few famous universities and schools might reject you based on your score. You do stand out from other test takers if you receive a 24+ score. However, one might need a much better score to enter colleges like Princeton.

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Section-Wise Breakdown

The maximum ACT score is 36, and this is the scale used to evaluate the ACT exam for each section. The global ACT average is 20.6. Let’s now examine the average ACT test score in relation to the various ACT exam components.

Section AverageAverage Score 
Average English ACT Score19.9
Average Maths ACT Score20.2
Average  Science ACT Score20.6
Average Reading ACT Score21.2

Now that we’ve discussed the subjects that are required for the ACT exam, let’s speak about the fifth, optional subject, writing. Your overall score is unaffected by your writing section score.   

The ACT writing scale has a 2–12 range. The average score on the ACT Writing Exam is 6.5. Extremely selective universities favour a score of 8 or higher. The numbers 10, 11, and 12 stick out and show excellent writing skills.

Universities at both the college and university levels make their own decisions regarding whether or not to require the ACT writing exam results for admission. 

Average ACT Scores for Colleges

Colleges evaluate applicants based on their performance on the ACT exam. Most colleges have a minimum score that applicants must achieve in order to be accepted.

University25th Percentile75th Percentile
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)3335
Stanford University3135
Harvard University3235
University of California, Berkely3034
University of California, Los Angeles2833
Yale University3135
The University of Texas at Austin2632
Cornell University3034
California Institute of Technology3435
Georgia Institute of Technology-Main Campus3033
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign2631
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor2933
University of Southern California3033
Dartmouth College3034
Duke University3134
Johns Hopkins University3234
Princeton University3235
University of Pennsylvania3134
Carnegie Mellon University3134
Ohio State University-Main Campus2731
Northwestern University3134
Williams College3134
University of Chicago3235
University of California-San Diego2833
North Carolina State University at Raleigh2631
Brown University3134

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Is a 24 on ACT good?

You are undoubtedly a competitive applicant if you receive an ACT score of 24! To put it another way, an ACT score of 24 places you at the 73rd percentile, which means you performed better than 73% of test-takers overall.

How hard is it to get a 25 on the ACT?

With an ACT score of 25, you are above average, qualified for admission to many colleges and competitive at some selective ones. To put this achievement into perspective, an ACT score of 25 places you in the 75th percentile, which indicates you performed better than 75% of test-takers overall.

Should I retake the ACT if I got a 33?

With a 33 on the ACT, should I retake it? There is no need to retake the test if you receive a 33 on the ACT. Retaking the ACT is only something you should think about if you want to improve your chances of getting into the best universities. Every additional point on your ACT score and GPA will be helpful because there is tremendous competition for premium colleges.

An essential prerequisite for the college or university you want to attend is a respectable ACT score. You should work at a score of at least 30 in order to be accepted into top universities abroad. For more information, you can connect with our Leverage Edu experts at 1800572000. 

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