EDUCATION + SCHOOLS

Post-pandemic ACT scores: Utah’s numbers higher than national average

Dec 13, 2023, 10:58 AM | Updated: 10:59 am

ACT scores post covid-19....

Cara Luna teaches fourth grade at Tse’Bii’Nidzisgai Elementary School in Oljato-Monument Valley, San Juan County, on Thursday, Sept. 30, 2021. Last year Luna rode the school bus to hand out homework and lunches to students learning remotely. (Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)

(Kristin Murphy, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — ACT scores have been dropping around the county, however, Utah’s numbers are still higher than the national average. 

Scores have been declining over the last six years. The global shutdown throughout the pandemic seemingly accelerated the drop. 

Utah’s average ACT score for the class of 2023 was 19.9, which is slightly above the national average of 19.5. Until 2021, Utah student’s scores were consistently below the national average. 

According to an article published by the Associated Press, 1.4 million students took the ACT this year in the U.S. Of those students, 21% met the benchmarks measuring success in college courses in all subjects. 

Many universities are making standardized admissions tests optional, according to the AP article.

The change in requirements is due to criticism of universities. Critics have alleged that university admissions departments favor those from a wealthy background and that low-income students don’t get a fair chance at admission. 

The Quad Education webpage reports that top colleges like Princeton, Harvard, and Yale University do not require SAT or ACT scores for admission. 

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Post-pandemic ACT scores: Utah’s numbers higher than national average