The ACT: to take or not to take


Kennedy Gottschalk, Feature Editor

When I nervously arrived to take the ACT, I realized that this single score was going to determine my future and the colleges I could get into. This was a lot of pressure to put on a single test, but there are many reasons why there’s so much stress when it comes to taking the ACT.

The ACT is one of the largest tests that students take in their high school career, and a high score on the ACT means large scholarships and acceptance into even the most prestigious schools. Although I see this test as a defining moment for my future, there are some students who feel the opposite. Some students disapprove of the ACT because they believe standardized tests don’t necessarily show overall intelligence.

“I understand that it’s needed to see if everyone is meeting the standards, but I definitely think that it shouldn’t be based on how smart you are. Other people can be tested in different ways. I feel like how it’s being tested right now isn’t the most effective or efficient, and it discourages students to be better,” Senior Luisa Ortega said.

I believe that the ACT is a necessary evil. It is one of the longest and hardest tests I have had to take, but it has been able to open up multiple opportunities for me. Some of those opportunities include access to highly sought after scholarships and more options when it comes to applying to colleges.

Another factor that I think the ACT provides is showing where students are on an academic level. By being tested on multiple subjects, students are able to see what they struggle the most with and what they can do to fix it. I’ve been able to learn through my old tests by going over answers that I got wrong. By learning from these mistakes, I was able to increase my score and my knowledge in these subjects. 

Due to COVID-19 cutting into the 2019-2020 school year, a majority of colleges across the country are no longer requiring an ACT score. This has brought relief to many students who dread taking the test. For me, it provides an opportunity to stand out with high scores and more scholarship options, compared to those who are not taking the test. I encourage students to take the test, regardless of whether or not their future college requires it. Studying for the ACT has not only increased my score, but has also helped me with school itself. I think that students should consider striving for a high score, and consider all the amazing opportunities and scholarships it can bring.