ReACTing to the ACT

 

Beechwood juniors recently completed one of the most important academic events of their high school careers. Margy Groshong report.

March fifth was a monumental day for Beechwood’s juniors. This was the day juniors had been preparing for the past year. Yes, this day was the hallowed day of the ACT. Students bedecked in neon green t-shirts walked through Beechwood’s doors, already prepared for whatever this test might throw at them. Placed in the high school’s gym, juniors took the ACT in a little over three hours. Now, fast-forward eight days. This day has already happened. Juniors are, maybe, stress free and waiting for their results. But what did they think? What was the hardest section–English, reading, science, or math? It’s time to figure out what happened on March fifth, in the gym, on the ACT.

Casey Nalley wasn’t nervous at all for the test and says she does not want to see her score. As for the ACT related t-shirts, “the neon wasn’t distracting but it was really bright.” Elizabeth Gieske had a much different take on the shirts saying, “The neon gave me headache.” She also said that overall, the practice ACT tests were much different than the actual test, “the third passage of reading took me almost 15 minutes!” Elizabeth also said that the fateful day of receiving ACT scores is drawing nearer, “I’m definitely more nervous to see my score than I was taking it. I’ll definitely take it again.” But when asked how difficult the ACT was, they all had the same response–difficult. Science was impossible, math seemingly doable, reading hard, and English alright. Junior Alison Crutchfield had an interesting thought on this, “The ACT may be getting harder due to the fact that students are becoming better prepared.” But Micah Burkhardt had the most interesting response overall, “It was easy! I’m excited to see my score.” The ACT was definitely no sweat for Mr. Micah Burkhardt.

Now that the juniors have taken the ACT, how do they compare to the rest of the nation? Where do they fit in? The average national composite score for the class of 2012 equaled a 21.1, remaining unchanged from the class of 2011. Maybe this year’s 2013 class will raise the score a little bit. Other stats include science and math scores. These scores have actually risen dramatically in the U.S. Scores indicating college readiness in science have increased from 28% to 31%, in math 42% to 46%. Now that’s something to be proud of. Nationally, just 46% of 1.66 million students who took the exam met the national benchmark in math, 31% met the benchmark in science, compared to the 67% in English and 52% in reading who met the benchmark. Overall, English and reading scores remain much higher.

With opinions ranging from difficult to easy, this year’s junior class is definitely widespread with their thoughts of the college-readiness test. Most seem excited to see their score. With scores coming soon, they won’t have long to wait to see. And maybe March fifth will go down as a monumental day in Beechwood’s history; the day 2013’s juniors scored the highest composite ACT score ever at Beechwood high school.

 

 

 

This graph represents which states take which college-readiness test. 

Blue states represent ACT takers. Orange states represent SAT takers.

 

margy

 

 

 

 

Margy Groshong

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