Idaho ACT scores drop, but still top national averages

Idaho ACT scores drop, but still top national averages

Idaho ACT scores drop, but still top national averages

Vermont students on average scored better than the national average in each area of the test. The top score is 36, an average of the score on the four subject areas - English, reading, math, and science.

The ACT and the SAT are standardized tests taken as college entrance exams by students in 10th, 11th and 12th grade. Among those states, only Minnesota, South Dakota and IL had equal or higher composite scores.

Some states with the highest average composite scores have limited participation, in part because students opt to take the Saturday. ACT says that because different shares of students take the test in different states, it's hard to meaningfully rank scores by state.

Broken down by subject, 47 percent of MS test-takers were judged college-ready in English, while 29 percent were in reading, and 20 percent were in math and science.

Last year, the state's participation in the test surged and the state's scores tumbled.

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A bright spot in the national data: The number of Hispanic students taking the test has grown, and their average scores and readiness levels also rose slightly.

The top five schools to which South Carolina students sent their scores were: Clemson, University of South Carolina-Columbia, College of Charleston, Coastal Carolina and Winthrop.

After dropping for a year, Minnesota students' scores on the ACT college entrance exam are on the rise, but future access to the test might be limited.

"While we have made progress over the past year, we have significant ground to cover in order to meet our goal that every student graduates prepared for success", she added. Last year, about 60,000 more students-64 percent of the 2016 graduating class-took the exam. The MCAs measure whether students are meeting state benchmarks in English, math and science. The benchmarks are minimum ACT scores that correlate with a good chance of earning B's or C's in entry-level, credit-bearing college courses.

Twenty-eight percent of tested 2017 Nebraska graduates met all four benchmarks, compared with 27 percent for the nation. In recent decades, the test shifted to focus on whether students are ready for careers or college. They reflect specific skills "that can be taught in a relatively short time", not years of study, Chyten said.

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Like all standardized exams, the ACT showcases the differentials in performance between students with key advantages such as family income and education and those without them. Vermont's Pacific Islander students performed worse than other students in the state but above average for their racial group.

The proportion of graduates showing virtually no readiness for college coursework remained sizable.

In STEM, a particularly rigorous benchmark created from students' math and science scores, only 2 percent of the students who met all three underserved criteria reached the college-ready benchmark, but 31 percent of the more-advantaged students met it. Educators and policymakers have been urging students to consider careers that demand science, technology, engineering, and math skills, since those jobs are increasingly in demand and can pay well.

ACT released the findings in its annual score report, based on spring 2017 graduates. Average scores often get lower as more students are tested.

Weeks said the ACT has been trying various strategies to address that problem, such as reminding students of their test dates by phone calls, emails, or texts.

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