Keep your best section scores, and use your best overall score.
The ACT Superscore is beneficial because it takes the average of the four best subject scores from each ACT test attempt—and counts it as your official score.
Why Superscoring is Important and How it Promotes Student Success
At ACT, we are grounded in research. We listen and respond when new information comes to light. Over the last two years, we’ve been investigating whether Superscoring is a fair and valid practice. After extensive research, we found that Superscores were more predictive of how students would perform in their college courses than other scoring methods.
A few things to know about Superscoring:
- ACT supports the use of superscoring in making college admissions decisions.
- Colleges set their own policies regarding superscoring. However, ACT will supply them at least one full composite score with each superscore, plus all the scores from the test events that are part of the superscore composite.
- We encourage colleges and universities to consider adding superscoring to their score-use policy because, as our research shows, superscores are just as predictive – if not more predictive – of first-year grades than other scoring methods.
Leaders in Education Discuss New ACT Test Options
Why Superscoring is Important to Students
Watch as Dr. Tony Thacker (Alabama Assistant State Superintendent of Education and head of the Office of Evaluation and Innovation), shares insights on the benefits of Superscoring.
Do You Believe Superscores Are Predictive of College Readiness?
Watch as Phillip Jacobs (from the Tennessee Department of Education), discusses his views on superscores and their ability to predict college readiness.
...not ACT Superscores?
We encourage colleges and universities to consider adding superscoring to their score-use policy. As our research shows, superscores are just as predictive—if not more predictive—of first-year grades as other scoring methods. The Superscore will also include the highest composite score, so even if it’s not accepted there, a score that will be accepted will be sent as well.
At the same time, colleges and universities establish their own policies for admissions and scholarship decisions. See a few perspectives on using multiple score reports at Perspectives on Multiple Scores.
In an ACT study, superscores were more predictive of how students would perform in their college courses than other scoring methods. There’s also an issue of fairness. If a college is superscoring the SAT, that policy should be applied consistently to all applicants. Concerns of fairness arise if one score-use policy (most recent score) is applied to some groups of applicants (e.g., females, ACT test -takers) and a different score use policy (superscore) is applied to other groups of applicants (e.g., males, SAT test -takers).
...to superscores and another doesn’t?
If a college or university applies the same score-use policy for all applicants, no applicants are at an unfair disadvantage. Students are only at an unfair disadvantage if different score policies are used for different groups of students (e.g., ACT test-takers vs. SAT test-takers) within the same institution.
That said, a student may have a higher probability of being accepted at institutions that superscore as compared to institutions that do not.
Yes. Here is language you can use as a starting point.
[College/University Name] superscores the ACT. Superscoring at [College/University Name] means that we consider a student’s highest ACT section (or subtest) scores regardless of test date. The super composite ACT score is calculated as the average of the best ACT English, Reading, Math, and Science subject scores and is used as one of multiple factors in admission and financial aid. Beginning in October 2020, students are encouraged to send [College/University Name] their ACT test scores utilizing the Superscore reporting option. See example from Vanderbilt University.
No. We recommend that students look into the admission policies at the colleges/universities of their choice to understand their policies.
...and if so, to how many schools?
Students will send their ACT Superscore through their online ACT account. Information regarding the number of free reports ACT will offer (and any associated fees for sending reports) will be made available soon.