A First Look at STEM

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This chart depicts ACT College Readiness Benchmark attainment by student interest in STEM majors/occupations, as defined by the National Science Foundation, from the 2010–2012 national ACT-tested graduating classes (N = 1,167,221). Just over 1 in 10 graduates indicated interest in a STEM major or occupation. In each subject area, greater percentages of STEM-interested graduates met the ACT College Readiness Benchmarks than did their peers. The largest differences in Benchmark attainment rates were in Mathematics (24 percentage points) and Science (20 percentage points).

ACT plans to release a report on the condition of the STEM pipeline in 2013.

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Percent of ACT-Tested High School Graduates Meeting ACT College Readiness Benchmarks by National Science Foundation STEM Interest

Note: STEM majors/occupations classification is from the National Science Foundation’s STEM Classification of Instructional Programs Crosswalk.

SubjectSTEM (11.6%)Non-STEM (88.4%)
English70%59%
Reading57%44%
Mathematics57%33%
Science41%21%