Every year, the ACT prepares a “College and Career Readiness” report. This report highlights significant performance data points for the given year’s graduates. This information is meant to help track test-prep trends, give clear insight into whether aggregate test scores are meeting college readiness benchmarks, as well as capturing student aspirations. Below we share three critical findings from this years report.
1. The ACT continues to grow in popularity
In 2012, for the first time ever, more students took the ACT than the SAT[i]. The increasing popularity of the ACT continues to be a critical piece of the puzzle for students applying to college. In 2014, 1.8M students took the ACT. This is an 18% increase in the number of ACT tested graduates since 2010.
2. The percentage of students meeting ACT College Readiness Benchmarks remained steady
The Class of 2014 performed similarly to past classes as it relates to the percentage of graduates meeting reading, math, and science benchmarks. In the class of 2014, the percentage of students meeting college readiness benchmarks was as follows:English: 64%
All four subjects: 26%
Interestingly enough the ACT reports that in Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Wyoming, states that focus on college and career readiness in their curriculum, the class of 2014 saw gains of 0.2-0.3 points in their ACT Composite scores. The ACT explains this improvement in the following way; “gains in achievement are common in states that create an educational culture focused on college and career readiness”.
3. Students aspire to college, but many are not enrolling
In 2014, 86% of graduates would like to attend a college or university. 87% of 2013 graduates reported wanting to go to college, but only 69% enrolled.
Within the class of 2014, excluding those who are undecided or did not indicate a major, Nursing and Pre-Med were the two most popular majors. Only 14% of students with an interest in a nursing major met all four college readiness benchmarks. 48% of those who expressed an interest in being pre-med met college readiness benchmarks. The majors with the best fit based on ACT test scores were Biochemistery and Biophysics (51%) and Accounting (53%).
You can read the entire report by clicking here: http://www.act.org/newsroom/data/2014/pdf/CCCR14-NationalReadinessRpt.pdf
Other TestRocker ACT BlogsThe top 4 reasons to take both the SAT and ACT
ACT changes on the horizon in 2015
ACT Trigonometry Tips
The ACT Science Section: It’s not rocket science
Your guide to ACT test day
[i] Lewin, Tamar. NYTimes. “Testing, Testing: More Students Are Taking Both the ACT and SAT”. 2013 Aug 12.