ACT Scores: How Long Does It Take To Get Results

ACT scores
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The ACT is a challenging four-hour exam that requires not just your knowledge of English, math, science, and reading, but also your ability to solve problems quickly and effectively. To help you with this last skill, the ACT has a Stop and Click feature that lets you instantly click on the correct answer if you’re not sure about your original response. This can be a great way to boost your confidence and get a few more points for your next ACT. Keep reading to learn more about how to use Stop and Click on the ACT to your advantage. The average for the ACT score is 20, with 36 being the highest possible score.

If you take the test more than once, colleges require you to report a single composite score instead of your section scores. A student who takes the ACT as a sophomore will likely receive their results by January or February of their junior year in high school. Your counselor or admissions department at whichever college you’re applying to can tell you exactly when they will be able to see your score (if you send them an official copy).

In this article, we’ll go over everything you need to know about ACTing dates, how long it takes to get results after taking the ACT, what code to give schools if you don’t want them to see your first score, and how long it takes for colleges to get your new test scores after retaking it.

How Long Does It Take To Get ACT Results?

The ACT is a national exam that is administered year-round. Students can take the test as early as September of their sophomore year and as late as June of their senior year in high school. Even though students have a wide range of dates to choose from, most students take the ACT in either October or February. Why? Because most students apply to college for fall admission, you have more flexibility when it comes to scheduling the ACT for October than you do in February.

The majority of students take the ACT during one of these two test dates, which means most students receive their scores in the same two-month window. If you take the ACT in October, you can expect to receive your results around December. If you take the ACT in February, you can expect to receive your results around the first week of March. If you take the ACT on a different date, you can expect to get your scores around two weeks after the testing date.

If you’re a junior and you want to get your scores as early as possible, you can register for the October test and take it in September. If you do this, you’ll probably get your scores in mid-October. If you take the ACT in February, you can still get your scores in March if you take the test in January. In other words, even if you wait until the last month of testing to take the ACT, there’s still a chance that schools will receive your application by the May 1st deadline.

How Long Do Schools Keep ACT Scores?

Most schools keep ACT score reports on file for one year after they are received. That means that if schools receive your scores on May 2nd, they will keep them until May 2nd of the following year. After that date passes, they will automatically delete them from their records unless they specifically request an extension from ACT or have some other reason to keep them beyond one year (for example, if there is an appeal or a lawsuit).

How Long Should You Wait To Apply To College?

If you take the ACT in October and November, it’s probably a good idea to wait until December or January to send your applications. If you take the ACT in December or January, then it’s probably a good idea to wait until February before submitting all of your applications. If you take the ACT in February and March, then it’s probably best to wait until April before sending everything off. Keep in mind that these are just general guidelines, and there’s no reason that you can’t apply earlier than these recommendations if you want to.

How To Get Your Scores Faster

If you want to get your scores as quickly as possible, then register for the test at least two weeks before the test date. If you register at least two weeks in advance, you’ll have enough time to schedule your test date and get your score as soon as it’s released. If you don’t want to rush or forget to sign up for the test, then you can also sign up at least 11 days in advance. This gives you enough time to schedule the test, but it also gives you a few days in case something comes up.

This way, if anything happens (like an illness or car accident), you’ll have enough time to request accommodation or cancel your registration without being charged a fee. In addition, leave yourself plenty of time between when the test ends and when your scores are due back at school so there’s no chance that something will go wrong with the reporting process.

If You’re Applying Early Decision/Early Action:

If you’re applying for early decision or early action (and don’t need your scores for scholarships), then it doesn’t matter when you take the ACT. The only thing that matters is that you’re prepared when test day comes. To best ensure your success, start preparing at least a few months ahead of time. There are a few things you can do to improve your ACT score, but nothing will improve it as much as preparation. To best prepare for the ACT, you’ll need to know what’s on it.

The best way to do this is to take practice tests. Some books and websites offer practice tests, and they’re all very similar. Taking these tests will help you learn what’s on the ACT, but more importantly, they’ll give you a sense of how much time you need to dedicate to each question. This last bit is very important, as you don’t want to run out of time on test day. You can even take it on test day if there isn’t another available date for whatever reason! If this is the case, I recommend taking whichever version of the ACT is offered first (for example September vs October).

If you want to apply for fall admission, then you should submit all of your materials (including all supporting documents) by May 1st. This includes sending your ACT score report directly from ACT to each school where you’re applying. This isn’t always easy to do because not every school accepts electronic versions of score reports.

How Long Does It Take To Get Scores After Retaking The Test?

When you take the ACT, the testing agency will report your highest total score from all sections. If you retake the test, however, you can specify that you would like the testing agency to report only your most recent composite score. This is the best way to handle retaking the ACT if you’re applying to a large number of schools. All of your applications will reflect your highest ACT scores, and no one will know about your lower scores if you don’t want them to.

For example, let’s say you take the ACT in October, and your highest total score is 29. After retaking the test in February, your highest total score is 31. If you don’t specify that you want the testing agency to report your February score, all of your applications will see your October score. If you do specify that you want the February score, however, all of your applications will see your highest total score (31).

What Code Do You Give To Schools When You Don’t Want Them To See Your First Score?

If you retake the ACT and want the first score reported to be your higher score, you don’t need to do anything special. Your scores will be reported to colleges and scholarship providers when they are released. When you retake the ACT, you will be given a new Student ID. You can re-enter your old Student ID if you want your first reported score to be your initial attempt. The ACTing agency will simply report the higher score.

If you retake the ACT and don’t want the first score reported to any of your schools, you’ll need to tell the testing agency that you want your original score withheld. The best way to do this is to write “withheld” on the code line of your ACT score report. Alternatively, you can also write “old score withheld” on your registration form. You can do this on the registration form for the ACT Plus Writing or the ACT with Writing.

ACT Scores

Are There Any Other Reasons Why I Should Wait To Send My Scores?

If you retake the SAT or ACT and want to send your scores to colleges and scholarship providers, you may be wondering when is the best time to send them. If you wait until after all of your scores are released, you’ll have a wider range of scores to choose from for each test section. You could potentially send a higher score in Reading than Math, for example. If that’s what you want to do, it doesn’t matter when you send your scores—you can always go back and change them later if necessary.

Another reason why it might be beneficial to wait before sending scores is if your initial score report included an error with one or more of your answers (e.g., a wrong answer was marked correct). In this case, it may be worth waiting until all of your scores are released so that any errors can be fixed before they are reported to colleges and scholarship providers.

How Long It Takes For Colleges To See New Scores?

The ACTing agency works with colleges to send out new scores as quickly as possible. The timing depends on the college, however. Some colleges will have new scores in your application within 24 hours, while others take a week or two. With that said, it’s important to understand that the timing of your new scores will depend on how quickly you send the ACTing agency your code. If you don’t specify that you want your first score withheld, the testing agency will submit both scores to colleges.

If you want the first score to be withheld, you’ll need to submit the code as soon as you receive your scores. Most colleges will use your highest composite score to make their admission decisions, but it’s important to remember that they will be using the date you took the test, not the date your new score was sent. For example, let’s say you take the ACT in February and your highest composite score is a 29. You retake the test in June, and your highest total score is 33.

The ACTing agency will send your new score to colleges in July. If you want the February score to be withheld and only your new score to be seen, you’ll need to submit the code to the testing agency in June.


The ACT is one of the most popular standardized tests used for college admissions. The ACT is often compared to the SAT, and many colleges offer ACTing as an option for standardized testing. The ACT is typically offered in October, November, December, January, and February. To sign up for the ACT, you’ll need to create an account and then select the ACT date from the list of ACT dates. ACT dates are available throughout the year, and the ACT is offered in different languages.

There are different ACT dates for each ACT language, so be sure to check the ACT dates for the language you want to take the ACT in. If you’re planning to attend college in the United States, you will need to take this exam at some point during high school. It’s important to know how long it takes to get results, what code to give schools if you don’t want them to see your first score, and how long it takes for colleges to see new scores. Students who understand these timelines can better prepare themselves for the test and its aftermath.

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