When you register for the ACT, the forms will ask you to choose four colleges. The ACT will send your score report to these four colleges for free. This sounds like a good deal, but is it the right choice?
4 Free Reports
The ACT will send these four colleges a score report before you have seen your results. That means if you don’t perform well, these colleges will know. It is convenient to have your scores sent automatically because it is free. It is also faster. If you are taking the ACT close to an application deadline, the free reporting may be the only choice you have. The ACT offers a table outlining when you can expect your results according to test date so that you can determine whether or not you have the luxury of waiting to report your scores.
When you choose not to have your score sent to the four colleges, you can wait until you have seen your score. You can decide whether or not you are satisfied with the score and if you will take the exam again. Should you decide to take the exam again, you can choose to have your score reported from either date.
If you did choose four schools to send your score to, but you have changed your mind or are interested in a new school, you can send additional reports.
Opting to send your score report after you have received your score will cost $12.00 per report. You can send a priority report for $16.50. You can request reports online, by telephone or by mail after you receive your scores. You cannot combine scores from different test dates to create a different composite score. You also may not choose a writing score from one date and a composite score from another date. All scores from a single testing date will be reported together.
Before you choose whether or not to have your scores reported, check admissions requirements for the colleges you are interested in. Some colleges require that you report all of your scores from each test date taken. If this is the case, you should take advantage of the free score reporting because you will have to share your score no matter how you perform. Many admissions offices will only consider your highest score, so it may not cause any problems to go ahead and send the free score report.
Don’t Overthink It
Don’t stress too much about sending or not sending your scores. If you are prepared for the ACT and feel confident, you are not likely to get a score that will prevent you from being admitted. Most colleges will take into account your highest score and some even like to see students who demonstrate improvements on their score. If you feel unsure or uneasy, paying $12.00 for the score report may be worth the peace of mind knowing that colleges are only seeing your best work.