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Question about ACT superscoring

ponyboatponyboat Registered User Posts: 65 Junior Member
edited April 2012 in ACT Preparation
Hi, I found this excellent up-to-date chart regarding superscoring on another CC thread. All of my son's top choices appear on this list as superscoring the "ACT Composite." Can someone explain that to me? I understand what ACT superscoring is, taking the best sub-section from all of the test dates and coming up with a new composite. But if you are just superscoring the composites, doesn't that simply mean they are taking the best score? If so how is that different from simply submitting your best score (all of these schools allow score choice which I know is an SAT thing but I assume means you can choose which ACT score to send).

Am I missing something?

Compilation of the latest admissions requirements for top 100 schools | PrepMatters
Post edited by ponyboat on

Replies to: Question about ACT superscoring

  • student2407student2407 Registered User Posts: 177 Junior Member
    It is only the same thing as taking as the best score, if the best scores were all in one test.

    Let's say you took two test and got e:30 m:36 on the first (i'm leaving out the other sub scores for simplicity) and e:36 m:30 on the second. The super score of these two would be a 36, while the best score would be a 33.

    The ACT automatically allows you to choose your scores as it makes you pay separately for each test you send. To cut down on costs most colleges let you only send in your best ACT and write down the others. Then you only have to send the others in if you actually are accepted.

    Lastly, both SAT score choice and which ACT tests you can send in cannot be checked by colleges. There is no indication that you used. It's based on the honor system.
  • mokarneymokarney Registered User Posts: 67 Junior Member
    sorry to hijack your thread here but I want to get something straight. I took 2 ACTs:

    C- 32
    E- 27
    S- 35
    M- 35
    R- 30


    C- 33
    E- 33 (luck was on my side. :)
    S- 32 (again, ran out of time because I was so focused on answering all questions right, did not fill in for 3 bubbles. :P)
    M- 31 (did not watch the time and just guessed on the last 5-8 problems)
    R- 33 (meh, aimed for a 34 but good nonetheless)

    So does my super score for University of Pennsylvania just the ACT Composite? How would that work?
  • snowbeltmomsnowbeltmom Registered User Posts: 104 Junior Member
    I have a question regarding the link posted by Ponyboat (thanks for the link). Under the Superscore header on the chart, there is a category "SAT and ACT" and also the option "SAT and ACT composite".

    What is the difference in how the ACT superscoring is handled in these two cases? Does the category "SAT and ACT composite" mean that the college will take a student's highest subscore in each of the 4 areas on the ACT and then calculate a new composite?

    Also, as a general rule, do colleges not disclose that they superscore the ACT on their websites. I noticed that according to the posted link, most of the schools on ds's list do superscore the ACT, but I could not find that information on the schools' websites.
  • Canefreak2001Canefreak2001 Registered User Posts: 152 Junior Member
    Thanks for the great chart? On the chart, what do they mean by Score Choice? I don't understand that. How is that different from superscore?
  • snowbeltmomsnowbeltmom Registered User Posts: 104 Junior Member
    It is my understanding that with Score Choice, the student has the option of whether or not to report his scores from a particular test date. Schools that don't permit Score Choice require the student to submit all scores from all test dates.

    Superscore is when the college takes the highest score from each section from multiple test days to arrive at a new composite.

    I am still confused about the categories for the ACT superscoring. What is the difference between "SAT and ACT Composite" and simply "SAT and ACT?"
  • ponyboatponyboat Registered User Posts: 65 Junior Member
    I have gotten further clarification on this from admissions at a couple of the schools. Where it says ACT - composite - under the Superscoring column, that means they are only taking the highest composite from multiple test dates. They are NOT superscoring the subtests if the word "Composite" appears in that column. So basically, it means nothing. Submitting just your highest ACT score accomplishes the same thing. I was happy to see that Tufts superscores the subtests, but among the better schools, that and MIT are virtually alone.
  • ponyboatponyboat Registered User Posts: 65 Junior Member
    Also Chicago, Cornell and Dartmouth superscore ACT subtests
  • Canefreak2001Canefreak2001 Registered User Posts: 152 Junior Member
    @ponyboat Dang, well that stinks. But I went to info session at UNC - CH and they said they superscore ACT.
  • snowbeltmomsnowbeltmom Registered User Posts: 104 Junior Member
    Thanks for the additional info, ponyboat. You're right that superscoring the composite score means nothing. I would not call that practice "superscoring".

    Hopefully more schools in the next couple of years will begin to superscore the ACT. I don't get why these schools would superscore the SAT and not the ACT. I realize that a student has to pay to send each individual ACT score, but the potential increase in scholarship money would more than pay for the additional cost of sending the scores.
This discussion has been closed.