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The ACT Scoring Scale

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An ACT score report includes scores for each of the four subject area tests (English, Mathematics, Reading, and Science) and all associated subscores (which are calculated separately).

The first step in calculating a score for a subject area test is to determine the raw score for that test. The raw score is equal to the number of questions answered correctly on that test (there is no penalty for incorrect answers). Then, the raw score converted to a scaled score between 1 and 36 using a metric that takes into account variations in difficulty among different test administrations.

The Composite Score is the average of the four subject area test scores, rounded to the nearest whole number. Fractions less than one-half are rounded down; fractions one-half or more are rounded up.

Your score report will also contain a percentile ranking that shows the percentage of recent test-takers whose ACT score was at or below your own. The chart below lists the possible scaled scores and their corresponding percentile rankings:

Percentile rankings are based on ACT-tested high school graduates
from 2016 - 2018
Score English Math Reading Science Composite
36 99 99 99 99 99
35 99 99 99 99 99
34 97 99 97 99 99
33 95 98 95 97 98
32 93 97 93 96 97
31 92 96 90 95 95
30 91 95 88 94 93
29 88 93 85 92 91
28 87 91 83 91 89
27 85 88 80 88 86
26 82 83 77 86 82
25 79 79 74 82 78
24 75 74 71 77 74
23 70 68 66 70 69
22 64 64 60 64 63
21 59 60 54 56 58
20 53 56 48 49 51
19 47 52 43 42 45
18 43 47 37 36 39
17 39 40 31 29 32
16 35 30 27 23 26
15 29 18 22 17 20
14 23 9 17 13 14
13 18 3 12 9 8
12 14 1 8 6 4
11 10 1 4 4 1
10 6 1 2 2 1
9 3 1 1 1 1
8 2 1 1 1 1
7 1 1 1 1 1
6 1 1 1 1 1
5 1 1 1 1 1
4 1 1 1 1 1
3 1 1 1 1 1
2 1 1 1 1 1
1 1 1 1 1 1

Writing Test Scores

If you take the ACT Plus Writing you will also receive a writing score, which is reported on a scale of 2 to 12.

Writing Test essays are scored based on your ability to:

Your essay will be scored based on the overall impression it creates. Two trained readers will score your essay on a scale of 1 to 6; the sum of these scores is your Writing subscore, which is reported on a scale of 2 to 12. If the two ratings differ by more than one point, a third reader will read your essay and resolve the discrepancy.

Percentile rankings are based on ACT-tested high school graduates
from 2016 - 2018
Score Writing
12 99
11 99
10 99
9 95
8 88
7 65
6 47
5 24
4 12
3 4
2 2
1 1