This is completely anecdotal and I only have a feeling about this, but i feel like the ACT is not well respected. Caltech used to not accept these, which makes me think other schools aren't too interested in them. I'd like to see all kinds of stats on ACTs and SATs factors in getting admitted as well as stats on who is taking the ACT and the SAT. Because th ACT is known to be prominent in the midwest where people, I don't think, are as intelligent as on the coasts where SAT scores are the norm.
And don't try to go off on me for proposing this, all I want to see is some stats. At least I state when something is very anecdotal.
The 25/75 percentile for admitted students' ACTs is 31-34, which translates to SATs of 1360/1400-1510/1550. This is roughly similar to the 25/75 for the SAT.
The admissions officers say the ACT and the SAT are treated completely equally, and I see no reason not to believe them.
I also take strong exception to the idea that people in the Midwest are not as intelligent as people on the coasts. It's just ridiculous to suggest that people on the coasts are smarter just because they preferentially take the SAT. People on the coasts preferentially take the SAT because schools on the coasts have historically preferred it; schools in the Midwest have historically preferred the ACT, so kids in the Midwest take the ACT. No mystery there.
I'm not saying people on the coasts are smarter than people in the midwest because they take the SAT. I am saying that it could be possible that there are more intelligent people taking the SAT, so being in a certain percentile on the SAT might be actually better than the same percentile on the ACT.
Eh, it really depends on what type of test you like; they're both formatted differently. I took both, and scored considerably lower on the ACT than on the SAT's. The only thing I have against the ACT is that their scoring system is out of 36, which gives you a wide range of comparable SAT scores.
I thought the college bound people on the coasts are generally smarter than in the middle of the country. I looked at some stats and it looks like that is not really true, although I have not done extensive research.
Being on a coast has little to do with intelligence. The state of IL consistently has more USAMO qualifiers than most coast states per capita. There is a stronger correlation between intelligence and income level, which tends to be a bit more concentrated on some of the nicer coast schools. Smart people get good jobs, makes lots of money, make smart kids, that sort of thing. I'm not sure as a whole people on the coast are smarter, but there are likely more wealthy families in these area, who are more likely to produce smarter children.
Actually the upper Midwest states are the champion states in several kinds of GENERAL measures of educational level. The presence of certain kinds of national champions in coastal areas has more to do with self-selection of a small number of highly competitive students than with the general level of intelligence in each region. The TIMSS study of international math achievement will compare Minnesota to the rest of the world as it were a separate country the next time the TIMSS tests are given, because Minnesota did reasonably well internationally (much better than the United States national average) during the last round of TIMSS testing that included Minnesota students.
Yeah from what I have seen the upper midwest seems to be pretty smart looking at their SAT scores and stuff like that. I didn't necessarily expect that. However, again, I do not have conclusive evidence to say either way.