To retake or not? - opinions welcomed!

I took the April 2015 ACT and received these scores last night:

34 Composite
35 English
33 Math
36 Reading
30 Science

I’d taken the ACT previously twice and both times I’d gotten 31 composite scores. I really pushed for a 32 and was extremely happy to jump to a 34! My question is, should I retake for a 35 or 36? I am looking primarily at larger Big Ten schools like Purdue, Indiana University, Ohio State, etc. I’m a Michigan resident but I am not looking at Ivy League Schools for the time being. Is my 34 sufficient for merit-based financial aid at these schools, or would you guys recommend retaking? I would appreciate anyone’s thoughts! Thank you!

Just a side note, it is clear that my science section could use improvement, but I’ve prepped for the science test with very little movement so I am satisfied with remaining at a 30 for that section.

Don’t retake it.

Don’t retake it. A 34 is good for the schools you listed.

Don’t retake, it looks really bad to take it more than 3 times

Good job! If I were you I wouldn’t retake it. Your score is very competitive and I’m sure you would get merit based scholarships with it.

On another note, do you have any tips on bringing your score up from a 31 to 34?

@ALananhR I took it twice and got 31’s both times. I also took two full-length practice tests under standard testing conditions at my school and also got 31’s both times. I think what really did it for me was practice tests. I used the ACT Red Book, people say it’s too easy and there’s some validity to that but it helped with timing and working through different types of problems. If you ask me, practice tests are more effective than studying English rules or math formulas. But find the strategy that works best for you! My jump from a 31 to a 34 came when I finally stopped memorizing comma rules and the distance formula and instead took practice tests that prepared me for the real thing. Good luck to you and thank you everyone for your responses!

I have a similar situation. In October, my scores were Composite-34, English-35, Math-34, Reading-34, and Science-34. In April, my scores were Composite-34, English-35, Math-34, Reading-35, and Science-31. I was crushed to see the drop in my science subscore. I felt 10 times better about the April science than the October science. My goal for the future would be to get my science score back where it should be.

My prospective college choices include large state schools with great financial aid but also Notre Dame, MIT, and other highly selective universities.

I would like to try for a 35 or 36 again, mainly for personal reasons. I believe that I can make the jump from 34 to 35/36. Would such a change mean anything to the colleges I am looking at?

I took the April 2015 ACT and got a 34 too! I think I will retake it because I was only 0.25 away from a composite of 35.

@elphiew I definitely understand wanting to retake it if you were so close to a 35 (even though I’m sure you’d be fine if you didn’t!)