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What was your ACT?

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by tsl42, Feb 23, 2017.

  1. tsl42

    tsl42 Member

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    Just trying to get an idea of what people scored on their ACT that got them an appointment for the academy. Any help is greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Christcorp

    Christcorp 5-Year Member

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    What; when you study and take the ACT, your goal isn't to get a 36? If your goal in life isn't to do your best, and only to do what is needed to "Get by", then you probably need to reassess what you want in life. If you study and do "The Best" that you can on the ACT, then that is all you can hope for. If you do that, you can sleep well at night. Won't matter if you get a 36 or a 26. Because no one can do better than "Their best". And if you do "Your Best", then it doesn't matter what anyone else's scores are.
     
  3. Yukestrong

    Yukestrong Member

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    If I understand correctly, you're just wanting an idea of how you stand competitively. I scored a 29 on the ACT twice. I definitely recommend taking it two times to try to improve the score. Nonetheless, I know people here who have gotten lower in the ACT (I think 26 or so is the lowest that I've personally heard of) and much higher (yes, we have 36s here). I do agree though, do your best and that's all you can ask for.
     
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  4. Fuss

    Fuss Member

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    Took the ACT seven times to get my superscored ACT to a 29. My top scores for each section come from 4 different tests. Keep working at it and aim high!
     
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  5. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Super Moderator 5-Year Member

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    Look at a USAFA class profile to see what the average or median is (not sure what USAFA reports). Look at it for the last several years. This will give you an idea of what a class looks like at USAFA. A single data point of score X isn't going to do you much good. There is so much more to it.
     
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  6. USMA 1994

    USMA 1994 Member

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    You should look at the class profile and the self-reflect on how you stand and what are realistic scores you could attain. If your scores are in the mid 20s, an improvement to 36 is very unlikely but reaching 30 may be possible with hard work. If your scores are in the mid 30s, you should spend more time focusing on other areas.
    The admissions process is similar to an Algebra problem. Academic (60%) + Extracurricular (30%) + Athletic (10%) = WCS Score and the highest score usually wins. If your scores are on the high end of the spectrum, they will help raise your WCS while scores on the lower end need to be improved or offset by other areas.
    This is a contest and their is no way to predict who will be in that contest next year in your nomination pool. Do your best and let the chips fall where the may.
     
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  7. fencersmother

    fencersmother 5-Year Member Founding Member

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    Are you next going to ask us what's the lower CFA score someone got and received an appointment? How about the lowest GPA? or even the average GPA?

    Do your absolute best, and put together the best package you can, considering the WCS: academics, athletics, ECs, standardized tests, recommendations... etc.

    ChristCorp is right: if you strive for mediocrity, well, that's what you'll get.

    If you really want to impress fencersmother (and that should be one of your goals, obviously. ;) ), look through this site and gather all the reported ACT/SAT scores reported here, and put them in a spreadsheet for us all to see, year by year (along with all the other stats).

    See, I'm always willing to appreciate that extra mile in an aspiring AF officer.
     
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  8. MidwestDad

    MidwestDad Member

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    MI switched from ACT to SAT last year; DS had taken PSAT and ACT prior to SAT becoming 'standard' for all MI HS students.
    [SAT is now given during school for no cost once per year at all MI HS in place of the ACT.]
    He wound up retaking ACT at his own expense in order to get better superscore; as it happened his SAT essay scores were FAR better than his ACT writing and I am sure this helped.

    Sooooo - have you considered taking the SAT in addition to the ACT? Not sure what state you hail from but all these tests are available in all states, you just have to schedule and pay on your own instead of letting your HS coordinate it. SAT and ACT are similar but are designed to predict different results [future learning aptitude vs prior learned content.] So some folks do better on one vs the other; SAs consider both.

    If in doubt remember that you don't have to have scores sent automatically; you can wait for results and then decide if you want to send them in to SA [or any other school.]

    Don't forget to have test scores sent to your MOCs for nomination applications too . . .
     
  9. GreenMountainPatriot

    GreenMountainPatriot Member

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    The introduction letter from the Colonel at USMA admissions stated they wanted to see the standardized tests be taken several times by candidates They want to see tenacity. My DD took the ACT four times, the PSAT once, and SAT three times. Each time she took the test her scores went up in certain categories.
    We invested in a tutor. It was the best $50 / hour we could have spent. I think my DD did a total of four sessions. The tutor had her take practice tests, and they would go over them strategizing on how to apply what she learned to the next test. Her scores fell within the 50 - 65th percentile for both USMA's and USNA's class of 2020 profile.
     
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  10. MidwestDad

    MidwestDad Member

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    "The introduction letter from the Colonel at USMA admissions stated they wanted to see the standardized tests be taken several times by candidates They want to see tenacity"

    Another reason taking both SAT and ACT is a good idea. 7 times seems a bit much but I get it
    There is an art to test taking so if that's your weakness the practice tests and prep classes are a good idea.
     
  11. MN-Dad-2016

    MN-Dad-2016 5-Year Member

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    You need to re-read the OP's question. The question was:

    They question didn't have anything to do with "what is the lowest possible score". Rather, they were looking for a benchmark score. You know, the questions that students around the country try to obtain in order to see if they are competitive. Those questions spawn popular websites like collegedata.com to ascertain standardized score summaries. Furthermore, it was the OP's 1st post. I assumed nothing. They could be 15 years old or they could be a grandparent.

    Not everyone studies the histograms and admissions data; even long after their kids graduate from college. Who knows, the OP might have knocked the ACT score out of the park and was wondering if they have a reason to get their hopes up.

    For whatever reason, you read into their post assuming they prefer to give their absolute minimum. I prefer to give a 1st poster the benefit of the doubt.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2017
  12. AimHighReachForTheStars!

    AimHighReachForTheStars! Member

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    If you search, there are more posters here of 'what are my chances with these ACT scores' than 'I got an appointment with these ACT scores'. Most who applied this year (like my DS) are waiting for results but as of this writing there are 55 who have received USAFA appointments so hopefully some will share their scores. Do realize that the ACT score is only a portion of what the admissions board uses for selection.

    The USAFA instructions to candidates says the average ACT score from last year was 30. It's safe to say that some if not most (I don't know the number or percentage) of those that apply who are triple qualified with 30's ACT scores end up getting an appointment. The rest will be those who are also triple qualified that meet the USAFA's requirements. The Academy is not looking for candidates with all upper 30's ACT scores so whatever your best ACT scores are, put it in the initial application and let USAFA tell you if your application indicates you have the potential for admission or not. Once you get the go ahead signal, do your best to compete and hope for an appointment to USAFA or Prep School. If it doesn't go your way, use Plan B, re-apply or use the other routes to become an AF officer such as ROTC, OTS, or Direct Commission. Good luck.
     
  13. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator 5-Year Member

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    To answer the question....with VERY dated information...

    Flieger83 scored an ACT of 33. This was after taking the test...approximately 12 times. I took it every time it was offered in my sophomore, junior, and senior year...and got thin white envelopes from all the SA's, which I still have in a memento box.

    After my time at NWPS...I hit the 33...scores on the four parts were from 31 to 35. And I received offers of appointment from all EXCEPT USCGA...I was an alternate there. They had a VERY good year that year, apparently.

    Can you get in with lower; yes, maybe, perhaps, of course. Can you not get in with 33, and the answer is yes.

    So like my friend CC said earlier: strive for the best you can do in all things! If you do that and can honestly look in a mirror and say "I did my absolute best" then you can ask for no more and you should be proud!

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
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  14. Christcorp

    Christcorp 5-Year Member

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    To piggyback off of flieger. The reason I gave the answer I did, was not to sound like a turd. I've seen too many times on the forums and as an alo, where individuals ask such questions to get a "benchmark" of their possibilities or competitiveness, and wind up discouraged and decide NOT to apply because they see the average is around 30 ACT and they have a 27.

    The point is, as I and flieger and others stated, you should do you best and apply. Maybe you'll get an appointment and maybe you won't. The academies look at the whole person. So don't let your 35 ACT make you over confident, and don't let your 26-27 discourage you from applying.

    I write this post to the lurkers who read the posts and are concerned, but may not have posted anything here about it. I write the majority of my posts for the benefit of the others and not necessarily to just the original poster.

    And sorry to sound cynical, but I rarely ever respond to a person's very first post. I only responded to this one because it is a common question. But for this OP, I find it questionable when a person makes their very first post, gets numerous replies, and doesn't follow up with any future posts. Or even a post in another thread. So I hope I'm wrong, but until the OP replies with another post, any future comments I have on this matter is towards those serious about the academy and not a one time poster.
     
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  15. brovol

    brovol Member

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    I still think that of all the different, and all important, factors in the WCS, the ACT/SAT scores are most important. The first time my son met with an RC at WP he asked what he could do to put himself in a great spot to get an appointment. He already was pretty well rounded, with multiple varsity letters, and president of NHS, but his class standing was bordering around top 20% at a rural (not highly rated) school, and his ACT at the time was a 29. The RC told him flat out, move the ACT to 31, and he would get an appointment. He encouraged him to do well on the CFA, and make sure grades went up and not down, and also said being a team captain would help too, but the ACT would likely dictate. The guy really fired up my son, and he took care of business in a big way, moving the ACT to over 32, with 34's in math and science, was captain of baseball and soccer teams, and a very solid CFA. His GPA and class rank didn't move much but did go up a little, and he recieved an appointment in early January.

    There is probably a benchmark for candidates with respect to most of the admissions standards. It probably isn't the same for everyone though, as the academy does have certain admissions goals. My guess is that for a white male if you want to pick a number, 31 on the ACT is probably as good a number as any. However, math is the most important, followed slightly by english, with a big drop to science and reading. Obviously, every other admissions factor matters a lot too, so being well rounded is required no matter what. But those test scores are huge, and for most kids I don't think there is anything wrong with establishing a realistic benchmark. Never lose sight though of the fact that your competition and their numbers are just as important, and there is nothing you can do about that. But you can take care of your own business, and the ACT is an area where you can make hay. I told my son to have a "vision quest" if he wants an academy appointment, and I never saw him more motivated for anything. Receiving multiple appointments was incredibly satisfying for him.
     
  16. Maplerock

    Maplerock Proud to be an American

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    Wowee! Usually I'm the grinch. This kid has probably taken the ACT and is nervous and wondering, hoping, his score is good enough.

    These replies seem to be scolding him, telling him to quit asking such a silly question. Aim high! Buck up! Quit aiming low!

    No one goes into this hoping to just slide by. This kid is like so many that have come before, and doesn't quite know what to expect. The advice given isn't bad, I just felt it harsh.

    The truth is that scores in the mid 30's have been turned down before, and scores in the mid 20s have been accepted.. just yesterday I saw that someone's DD gained an appointment with a 1200 SAT. I know of an Eagle Scout with a 34 ACT that didn't get in.

    The do your best advice is Spot on... but the question was not inappropriate. The answers are probably out there (although the forum search engine is not the best) and hopefully you can find what you need. That's the best way to avoid stern rebukes.

    And CC & FM... no ill will intended.
     
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  17. Christcorp

    Christcorp 5-Year Member

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    No ill will taken. But I have 2 problems here.
    1. Until the op has at least a 2nd post, preferably in response to their first post, I don't give ANY assumptions that they may have done this, or they might do this, etc. Until they reply with something to show they were sincere with their question, I don't give it a grain of thought. As I said, my responses are towards those reading the thread but not posting and they have a similar question.

    2. My second and most important problem is; "What does it matter what the ACT scores are of those receiving appointments"? If everyone who received an appointment replied with scores in the 30's, is this going to make the OP try HARDER? If the responses come back around 28, would this make the OP NOT try harder? If the OP, or anyone taking the ACT or SAT gives it their best in studying and taking their test, then that is the best they can do. What does it matter what other scores are. It can't improve theirs.

    Sorry if I sound harsh or cynical, but the true translation I see in MOST of these types of questions is: "What is the MINIMUM effort I need to do to get an appointment"? The posters just don't want to be honest and say it that way. Some posters simply want to use this information to decide: "Do I really want to put that much effort into applying"? This isn't something new. Some people have been trying to just "get by" for hundreds and thousands of years.

    Society needs to be impressed upon, that success and failure is determined by their efforts and accomplishments. Not by their gender, race, color, or simply because they WANT it. And sometimes your efforts aren't good enough. I was one hell of an athlete in high school. But no matter how much I wanted, my efforts weren't good enough to get me to the NFL. But I tried my best. The question here is that some want answers so they can determine if they will even try at all. Granted, there is only so much time and resources a person can expel on certain goals; and sometimes they have to prioritize. But generally speaking, if you want something, or you want to do something, you need to give it 100%. If you attain that goal, great. If not, then at least you can live with yourself because you tried your best.

    I'm simply tired of people wanting to just get by. Tired of people wanting to know what the MINIMUM required is. If you want to attend the academy or a high end university, then give it your best and get the best gpa, ACT, etc. and apply. If you're satisfied with with just getting by with your 3.0 gpa and 23 ACT, then go to your local community college or university that allows any state resident in. Same when you get a job. If you want to advance up to management, then work hard and give it your all. If you're content with doing your 8 hours a day and doing only WHAT YOU'RE BEING PAID to do, then settle for being one of the lower laborers. But for god's sake, be honest with yourself. There's nothing wrong with being satisfied with what you have or do. Just don't expect that you should have MORE without more effort; simply because you want it or thing you're entitled to it.

    Our founding documents emphasize the PURSUIT of happiness. That means you have to pursue it. It's NOT to be GIVEN to you for free. And sometimes, your best won't be good enough. Someone else's will be better. That's why I'm not in the NFL. But if certain opportunities, you decide aren't worth your effort to give 100% and some others are, that's fine. But accept that and don't try and "get by" in the endeavors you aren't willing to give 100% on. And if you give it your best, then it doesn't matter what anyone else does. It has zero affect on your efforts.
     
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  18. fencersmother

    fencersmother 5-Year Member Founding Member

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    Oh Maple! A little criticism can't scare me off! ("Hey butthead! You're wrong!"... our family motto)

    I was just concerned that our OP is pushing for mediocrity, and I see way too much of that. Not blaming him/her - and I am pleased when kids do check in here. And while no question is silly, many are, as you know... redundant.

    It is my desire that all strive to be the best they can, and if that includes just squeaking by, I'm ok with that. After all, the top student and the goat in medical school are both called "doctor."
     
  19. fencersmother

    fencersmother 5-Year Member Founding Member

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    And for MN Dad:
    You are probably correct that I read into our OPs question what was on my own (small AND old, quite the combo) mind. I should pay more attention to the actual question asked.

    You and Maple will keep me on my toes.
     
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  20. MN-Dad-2016

    MN-Dad-2016 5-Year Member

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    Actually, I said a 15 year old or a grandparent (not AND but or). :)

    I'm all for giving 100% to "do your best". That all said, wouldn't it be fantastic if all of us gave 100% on everything we do in life? If we are honest with ourselves, it should be obvious that most high performing people (2-3 standard deviations to the right) still don't give it their all. Whether it be school, work, nurturing our marriage, etc, etc. All to often, we all can give more.

    Forgetting that for a moment, let's say you really are giving it your all to make that goal. Then time management mandates that you have to accept a compromise and realize when you need to refocus on other aspects in life. It's all about juggling several important priorities. At some point, you can be in a position where you have to pick taking another ACT test versus studying a difficult class(es) to get an A. Or maybe you need to focus on the commitment of being a captain of a team and its respective responsibilities. So realistically, that is part of the algorithm; time management and knowing when to change your focus. In fact, our DS had to make those decisions and decide when enough was enough specifically on the ACT. I bet he could have gotten a point or 2 higher IF he wanted to risk letting something else slip. Same thing with getting into medical school. He didn't have months to study for the MCAT. He had to juggle responsibilities with keeping an eye on what MCAT score was "good enough". As it turned out, it was "good enough". In my world, that's not settling. So to say "36 on your ACT should be your goal" isn't how I would personally manage my time. Being well rounded trumps a 36 ACT. If studying for that 36 consumes your bandwidth, then that was bad advice.

    That all said, maybe the OP is a coaster. I don't know. But I'm not so quick to judge. If Mrs. Fencemother kicks butt 24-7, then you are an outlier and then you should be rich or famous (or both). :) Most people need to manage their time and juggle their focus. IMHO, in life, "Work as hard as you can" needs more clarification than that simple cliché. :)
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2017

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