Score Sending

ACT-tested students often send their scores to a limited number of colleges that they would consider attending. The size of this consideration set and a college’s rank within it are important indicators of the student’s eventual enrollment.

Average Number of Colleges to Which ACT-Tested High School Graduates Send Test Scores by State ACT Participation Rate and Grade Level at First Testing, 2012

  • Within each state ACT participation rate category, students who first test before 12th grade send their ACT scores to a higher average number of colleges than their peers who first test during 12th grade.
  • For students who first test during 12th grade, the average number of colleges to which they send their ACT scores decreases as the state ACT participation rate increases.
Chart showing Average Number of Colleges to Which ACT-Tested High School Graduates Send Test Scores by State ACT Participation Rate and Grade Level at First Testing, 2012

Graph reads: In states administering the ACT statewide, members of the ACT-tested high school graduating class of 2012 who first test before 12th grade send their test scores to an average of 3.7 colleges.

Average Number of Colleges to Which ACT-Tested High School Graduates Send Test Scores
State ACT Participation RateFirst Testing Before Grade 12First Testing at Grade 12
Less than 26%4.03.0
26%–50%3.42.5
51%–75%3.52.1
76%–100%3.51.9
Statewide (100%)3.72.2

Average Number of Colleges to Which ACT-Tested High School Graduates Send Test Scores by ACT Composite Score and Grade Level at First Testing, 2012

  • Within each ACT Composite score range, students who first test before 12th grade send their ACT scores to a higher average number of colleges than students who first test during 12th grade.
  • The average number of colleges to which students send their ACT scores increases with ACT Composite score.
Chart showing Average Number of Colleges to Which ACT-Tested High School Graduates Send Test Scores by ACT Composite Score and Grade Level at First Testing, 2012

Graph reads: Members of the ACT-tested high school graduating class of 2012 who first test before 12th grade with an ACT Composite score in the range of 24–27 send their test scores to an average of 4.1 colleges.

ACT Composite Score RangeFirst Testing Before Grade 12First Testing at Grade 12
1–152.31.6
16–192.92.0
20–233.42.5
24–274.13.1
28–325.34.2
33–367.26.6

Average Number of Colleges to Which ACT-Tested High School Graduates Send Test Scores by Parent Education Level and Grade Level at First Testing, 2012

  • The average number of colleges to which students send their ACT scores increases as parent education level increases.
  • Within each parent education level, students who first test before 12th grade send their ACT scores to a higher average number of colleges than their peers who first test during 12th grade.
Chart showing Average Number of Colleges to Which ACT-Tested High School Graduates Send Test Scores by Parent Education Level and Grade Level at First Testing, 2012

Graph reads: Members of the ACT-tested high school graduating class of 2012 who first test during 12th grade and have at least one parent with some college education send their test scores to an average of 2.2 colleges.

Parent Education LevelFirst Testing Before Grade 12First Testing at Grade 12
No College3.01.9
Some College3.42.2
Bachelor's Degree4.02.7
Graduate Degree4.73.2

Note: Based on 82% of ACT-tested high school graduates for whom parent education level is available.


Average Number of Colleges to Which ACT-Tested High School Graduates Send Test Scores by Degree Plans and Grade Level at First Testing, 2012

  • Regardless of grade level at first testing, as degree aspirations increase, so does the average number of colleges to which students send their ACT scores.
  • Within each degree aspiration category, students who first test before 12th grade send a higher average number of test scores to colleges than their peers who first test during 12th grade.
Chart showing Average Number of Colleges to Which ACT-Tested High School Graduates Send Test Scores by Degree Plans and Grade Level at
First Testing, 2012

Graph reads: Members of the ACT-tested high school graduating class of 2012 who first test during 12th grade and plan to earn a bachelor’s degree send their test scores to an average of 2.2 colleges.

Degree PlansFirst Testing Before Grade 12First Testing at Grade 12
Less Than Bachelor's Degree2.21.3
Bachelor's Degree3.42.2
Graduate Degree4.42.9

Note: Based on 88% of ACT-tested high school graduates for whom degree plans are available.