ACT-SAT...Retest or Not?

If you were told you have a 57% chance of winning

the lottery tonight, would you purchase a ticket?

Of course!

That same percentage of students will increase their ACT or SAT scores on a second attempt.  Often this can lead to what feels like winning the college lottery. Increasing scores opens doors to college admission and may save your family thousands in future tuition. 

Many juniors taking their first round of ACT and SAT tests want to be finished with testing. Regardless of the first set of scores, I always encourage students to take a second shot. All colleges accept either test (unlike the days of today's parents).  Choose your test of strength and get back in the testing ring. If both ACT and SAT appear to be fairly even, students may want to give both a second shot.

Tracy's Improvement Story

I recall Tracy, a junior at the top of her class with a 4.3 weighted GPA who scored a 32 on her first ACT putting her above the average at her target college.  She gleefully announced her scores and that she was "finished testing". 

After congratulating her on her fantastic scores, I dashed her hopes of putting testing behind her only to explain her parents’ wallet was the main reason to test again.  The difference between the 32 she was satisfied with and the 34 she eventually earned amounted to thousands of dollars in scholarships at a state flagship. She, and her parents, later thanked me for the push.

SAT and ACT have a Score Choice policy meaning students can take each test multiple times and choose to ultimately submit only the very best, single test date score to the colleges where they apply.  However, some schools will Super Score the tests by taking the best score from each section across multiple test dates to boost the student’s chance at acceptance.  Regardless of the policy at any school, an improved score can make a difference.

While both ACT and SAT report the same 57% improvement statistic, keep in mind a percentage will drop and for some others scores remain the same.  However, in my experience, students who put a little effort into prepping before a retest, have higher odds than 57%.

With LEAP prep, your odds are 96% chance you will improve! AND we guarantee improvement. 

Ultimately test scores are a snapshot of who you were on a single test day and thankfully colleges will look at the whole picture.  Whether testing is your strength as was Tracy’s or it’s the thorn in your side, with a little effort you may just win the lottery!