Superscoring is simply combining the the highest scores from each section taken from each test date of either the SAT or ACT. This means that if you scored higher in Math and Reading on one SAT and higher in Writing and Language on the other SAT, a composite score is created from the Math and Reading on the first exam and the Writing and Language on the other exam. This works the same way for the ACT. However, the ACT composite is an average of scores rather than a sum.
It is important to understand that the SAT and the ACT do not provide the superscores for you. You may not pick and choose which section scores to send to colleges. The SAT and ACT will provide the scores you choose to send to colleges. If the colleges participate in superscoring, they will consider your highest sections scores and create your superscore, so they will need access to all the scores from each exam date.
Schools that Participate
The SAT provides a comprehensive list of schools that participate in superscoring and score choice. You can access a PDF of schools and their requirements. The ACT is a bit more ambiguous about which schools participate in superscoring. You will need to contact admissions offices to see if you should send all of your ACT scores or only your highest composite score.
Your Best Work
Superscoring only considers your best work, so it can relieve some of the pressure that comes with taking the exam. If you bombed the math section, you have another opportunity to get a higher score, without having to worry about repeating your performance or getting higher scores in the other sections.
Remember you are responsible for understanding admissions requirements at the institutions you are applying to. You are also responsible for requesting score reports. The bottom line is if an admissions office uses superscores, send all of your scores from all of your exam dates. Send only your highest exam date score, when only one score will be considered for admissions.
Your high school counselors are available to provide resources and answer questions regarding submitting exam scores for admissions. Don’t be afraid to get help when it is unclear which exam score you should submit.
Mr. Test Prep gives his students the deep learning skills they need to perform well on a lifetime worth of tests. At his Santa Clara SAT Prep center, he helps his students overcome years worth of bad mental habits and poor confidence so they’re ready to take on the test and reach their maximum score potential. With a combination of one-on-one tutoring and group testing, Mr. Test Prep offers the best of both worlds: experience with the conditions of the test and focused, student-specific instruction.