Perhaps it’s finally the year you apply to colleges for undergraduate education and are looking to get all your affairs in order. From GPA to extracurriculars, the entire process can be pretty stressful since your portfolio holds power to determine whether you will secure admission into your dream university. One aspect you should focus on is your standardized test scores, and in this article, we’ll address why October ACT scores take longer to come in.
How is the ACT Administered and Scored?
If you’ve started studying for the ACT, you might be wondering how it’s scored. When you understand how the ACT scoring system works, it becomes easier to set goals and develop a study plan. So, how exactly is the ACT administered and scored?
The ACT is designed for the 12th-10th grade levels, providing districts and schools with the necessary data to position students for success in college. It is not an IQ or aptitude test, and the questions asked are based on what you’ve learned in your high school courses. It is held internationally and nationally every year with additional district and state test dates.
It comprises four subject area sections: English, Reading, Science, and Math. Each subject area works on a scaled score between 1 and 36 that is then averaged into a composite score with the same score range.
The 1-36 scaled scores are converted from your raw score, the number of questions you answer correctly in every section. Additionally, no points are deducted if you answer a question wrong on the ACT. The reason for using the scaled score is that they want to ensure that all the scores remain consistent across various test dates. For example, a 28 on the June ACT shouldn’t represent a different skill level than a 28 on the April ACT.
Scaling doesn’t mean that your score is curved relative to other student scores who take the test with you. Its purpose is to analyze average ACT scores for each test version, ensuring that no assigned date administers a more or less challenging test than the others.
When Do ACT Scores Come Out Typically?
Knowing when your ACT scores will come out is helpful because it enables you to get organized when applying to university. It typically takes 10-24 days after you take the exam to receive the results, which can be viewed on your MyACT account. Not only is your score important for admission, but it also gives you an advantage when opting for scholarships and dual enrollment.
Getting your score online ten days after you sit for the test is normal. As for the question of what time ACT scores are released: usually midnight Central Time. Since the ACT is held on a Saturday, you should expect the results to come out on the second Tuesday following your test date. However, sometimes it can take longer, and you might wonder, ‘why my ACT scores are delayed’. Still, there’s no reason to be alarmed.
A range of possible ACT score release dates are offered on the official ACT website for each test, and the latest possible one is seven to six weeks after the test date. If you take the ACT with Writing, you should expect your multiple-choice scores to become available simultaneously as everyone else’s. The essay score will take an additional two weeks, and your complete ACT scores can take a little more than three weeks to come out.
How Do You Get Your ACT Scores?
You can access your scores on your MyACT account when they become available online, as they cannot be provided by chat, email, fax, or phone. In the case that you take the writing test, your reports won’t come in until your writing scores have been added. While you can view your scores online, the reporting process isn’t sped up.
Keep in mind that February and October ACT scores release after 3-8 weeks. This is because ACT executes equating activities during these test dates to ensure that reported scores are fair across all test forms.
The good thing about My ACT is that it’s mobile-friendly, and all results can be viewed from a phone, PC, or tablet, delivering dynamic score reports for National testing events. You can either send your super score or a specific test event score report when selecting score recipients. Use your browser’s print option to obtain an unofficial copy of your ACT score.
7 Possible Reasons Why Your October ACT Scores are Delayed
Let’s take a look at some reasons why your ACT scores might be delayed:
1. Your test date has been rescheduled.
2. ACT, Inc. has considerable tests to process and grade, and they could be running behind.
3. The personal information on your test doesn’t align with the credentials you provided during registration (this occurs more than you’d think).
4. ACT, Inc. randomly picked your test for auditing to determine scoring accuracy.
5. Your documents didn’t reach testing headquarters on time.
6. ACT, Inc. discovered an irregularity at your testing center or with your test scores.
7. You haven’t paid the registration fees.
An irregularity in your test could mean that you improved by a significant amount of points between test administrations, and the ACT, Inc noticed this. They might check whether you cheated, and if they stumble upon something suspicious, they’ll reach out and ask you to send ‘evidence’ of your studying.
It’s possible you didn’t study at all for your first try and did extensive prep for the second one, leading to a big difference between your scores. Although this situation occurs rarely, it can take a long time to clear and you might miss the college application deadlines. In the circumstance that you are contacted by the ACT, Inc, ensure you’ve kept evidence of your test prep and written your answers in the test booklet.
Ask others whether they’ve received their ACT scores on score-release day through discussion forums or word-of-mouth. In the worst-case scenario, your scores might be canceled altogether, and you’ll be forced to retake the test. Additionally, it’s always recommended to keep your username and password in hand.
Don’t hesitate to take action and get in touch with ACT, Inc. if you notice an unusual delay in your score reports. This will help you figure out what’s going on and reduce your stress. Otherwise, check the site weekly instead of every day because scores typically come out on Tuesdays.
What is the Average ACT Score?
For the 2021-2022 cycle, the average national ACT composite score was 20.6. It would be best if you compared your scores to the average scores of the schools you wish to attend rather than the national one, as each college has its own requirements. If you aim to attend and graduate college with minimal debt, check out the scores needed to attain merit scholarships and aim to secure them accordingly.
How to Improve Your ACT Score?
Here are certain strategies you can adopt to improve your ACT score:
Answer All the Questions
Ensure you fill every bubble since there’s no penalty for wrong answers on the ACT, meaning an unanswered question or an incorrect answer impacts your raw score the same way. Go ahead and guess an answer if you have no idea how to attempt a question.
Use the Elimination Process
Use the process of elimination in every ACT section to solve confusing or tough questions. As there is only one correct answer, eliminate the rest by using evidence from the passage and use your reasoning to determine the correct one.
Skip the Hard Questions
Let’s be honest: time pressure is a real problem for most reasons, especially on the ACT and SAT. If it’s taking more than 30 seconds to figure out a question, move on! Skip the questions you’re struggling with and take too much time to avoid losing points.
Wrapping Things Up: Why Do October ACT Scores Take Longer?
When you’re applying to college, it’s helpful to plan beforehand. This includes knowing when your ACT scores will come out since colleges require score submission with your application. While there might be some delay in receiving your score if you take the test in February or October, you can typically expect to get it 10-24 days after the test date.