Readiness Matters: The Impact of College Readiness on College Persistence and Degree Completion


This report is ACT’s most recent research on the importance of college readiness for persisting in college to timely degree completion. This study is based on a nationally representative random sample of ACT-tested high school graduates who immediately enrolled in either a two- or four-year postsecondary institution after high school and were tracked for seven years.

In determining a student’s chances of college success, this report helps answer the following questions:

  • Does the level of academic preparation in high school really matter?
  • Does early monitoring of college readiness make a difference?
  • What impact does college readiness have on reducing gaps in college degree completion among underrepresented populations?
  • What impact would greater college readiness have on the number of high school graduates enrolling in and completing college?

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