Information Brief 2012-26
How Are College Enrollment and Persistence Related to College Readiness?
The ACT College Readiness Benchmarks indicate readiness for credit-bearing, first-year college coursework in English composition, social sciences courses, algebra, and biology. The Benchmarks also provide insight on the likelihood a student will enroll in college and, once enrolled, the likelihood the student will stay in college.
The chart below shows how college readiness relates to persistence in college for ACT-tested 2003 high school graduates who immediately enrolled in a four-year college (four-year students) or in a two-year college (two-year students) the fall following high school graduation.
- Students who met more of the Benchmarks were more likely to remain continuously enrolled in college than those who met fewer Benchmarks.
- The finding held true for both four-year and two-year students.
Percentage of Students Remaining Continuously Enrolled in College through Year 4, by Number of ACT College Readiness Benchmarks Attained*
|Number of Benchmarks Met||Four-Year Students||Two-Year Students|
* Based on data from a random sample of 24,850 ACT-tested 2003 high school graduates who enrolled in college in fall 2003 (18,860 four-year students and 5,990 two-year students). Enrollment information was obtained from the National Student Clearinghouse. Persistence was based on annual fall re-enrollment in any college; rates were model-based estimates.
† Based on data from approximately 1.1 million ACT-tested 2003 high school graduates who provided a valid high school code from one of the fifty US states or the District of Columbia. Immediate college enrollment rates were model-based estimates.
For a more detailed description of the study, see the full ACT Research Report 2012-2.
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