For thousands of students across the United States, the ACT is a necessity before they start applying to colleges. From getting into your first choice of college to getting the scholarship you want, the ACT is, for many, the only thing standing between high school students and the freedom of college.
For those who have yet to face the test, the ACT is a standardized assessment comprised of tests in English, reading, science, and mathematics.
The four tests are taken as one exam nationwide at test locations throughout the city, and soon after, each of the tests are sent off to be individually scored on a scale from one to 36.
The overall score is determined by the average of these four tests.
The ACT is taken by more than 1.5 million people across the United States. The national average in 2016 is 20.8. Here in Nebraska, the average is even higher, sitting at a 21.4.
Impressive as that is, here in the Omaha Archdiocese, this year’s scores have broken records with an average of 24.9.
Many students take ACT prep classes in order to achieve a higher score, but what exactly does a higher ACT mean for a student?
According to counselor Mrs. Laura Gelecki, “Many scholarships are tied to a student’s ACT score. The difference between a 28 and a 29 can mean the difference between a couple thousand dollars of scholarships.”
For students who attend parochial schools throughout the archdiocese of Omaha, this heightened average reflects positively on their quality of education and hopefully secures them a better future as they head off to college.
The ACT can be a stressful time for students, but hard work will pay off and make a difference.