College Readiness Benchmark Attainment

Percent of ACT-Tested High School Graduates by Number of ACT College Readiness Benchmarks Attained, 2011

Pie chart showing percent of graduates by number of College Readiness benchmarks attained

Graph reads: In 2011, 25% (or 397,712) of ACT-tested high school graduates met all 4 College Readiness Benchmarks.

Number of Benchmarks AttainedNumber of StudentsPercent of Students
No Benchmarks458,39928.00%
1 Benchmark245,60415.00%
2 Benchmarks278,52817.00%
3 Benchmarks242,86915.00%
All 4 Benchmarks397,71225.00%

More than 1.6 million students of the high school graduating class of 2011 took the ACT during high school.

  • Seventy-two percent of these students met at least 1 of the 4 College Readiness Benchmarks.
  • There are far too many students—28%—that meet none of the College Readiness Benchmarks. ACT research shows that these students are less likely to enroll in college, persist over time, and complete a degree program within 6 years.


College Type Attended by Number of College Readiness Benchmarks Attained, 2011

Line graph showing percent of students who attended a 2-year college, a 4-year college, or no college, by number of benchmarks attained

Graph reads: 80% of the ACT-tested high school graduating class of 2011 who met all 4 College Readiness Benchmarks enrolled at a 4-year college.

Number of Benchmarks
Attained
4-Year
College
2-Year
College
Not
Enrolled
No Benchmarks23%26%50%
1 Benchmark45%24%31%
2 Benchmarks56%20%25%
3 Benchmarks69%13%18%
All 4 Benchmarks80%6%14%

Note: Percentages may not sum to 100% due to rounding.

Of the ACT-tested high school graduating class of 2011, 53% enrolled in a 4-year college, 18% enrolled in a 2-year college, and 29% did not enroll in college.

  • A student’s likelihood of enrolling in a 4-year college increased with the number of College Readiness Benchmarks attained.
  • A student’s likelihood of either enrolling in a 2-year college or not enrolling in college decreased as the number of College Readiness Benchmarks attained increased.
  • Of those high school graduates who met either 0 or 1 Benchmark, more than 300,000 did not enroll in college.