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Average ACT Score

Tell Me About The ACT…

The ACT is a national admissions exam that is used by colleges to help determine if you are ready for college level courses. The following 4 subject areas are tested on the ACT exam:





The ACT Plus Writing exam includes the 4 subject areas listed above, plus a 30 minute writing test. As for the format of the exam itself, it includes 215 multiple choice questions and takes approximately 3 hours and 30 minutes to complete (or 4 hours if you are taking the writing portion as well). The highest possible score that you can earn is a 36.

The ACT exam is offered on 6 test dates within the United States. These dates are in the following months: September, October, December, February, April and June.

In order to register for the exam, you must pay a $32 registration fee (or $47 if you plan to take the ACT Plus Writing).* This fee guarantees that you will receive a score report for yourself, your high school, and up to 4 colleges. You may choose to send an additional report to other college for $9 each.

*Keep in mind that these fees are subject to live score change. Visit this website for the most current information: ACT.org

What’s the Average ACT Score?

To determine what score to aim for, a lot of students are curious about the average ACT score. In 2010, the nationwide average ACT score was 21. This score can be broken down into the following categories: English – 20.5; Math – 21; Reading 21.3; and Science 20.9.

Below are some additional stats regarding ACT exam scores:

*Approximately 30 percent of students who take the ACT exam score between 19 and 23.

*Approximately 55 percent of students who take the ACT exam score between 17 and 25.

What’s the Average ACT Score by state?

Average ACT scores by state vary. Below is a list of states that have the highest average ACT scores:

Delaware – 23.0

Maine – 23.2

Massachusetts – 24

New York – 23.3

New Hampshire – 23.7

Washington – 23

What is a Good ACT score?

ACT score requirements vary from college to college. Most schools will post the average ACT scores of admitted students on their website. If you’re interested in a particular school, you should first check their website to see if their ACT scores are posted. If you’re having difficulty finding this information, don’t be afraid to contact their admissions office.

If you score between 34 and 36, you are among the top 1% of students who take the exam. Most Ivy League schools require ACT scores in the 90th percentile, which is generally a score of 28. Most public universities require at least an 18.

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