Top 10 Colleges Accepting ACT Scores: Know Which Colleges Accept ACT? Image
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Top 10 Colleges Accepting ACT Scores: Know Which Colleges Accept ACT?

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Yocket Editorial Team
7 mins read
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If you are planning to pursue your undergraduate studies in the US, you will most likely have to give entrance exams like the ACT or SAT. There are various top colleges that accept ACT scores. Given the number of colleges in the US, it is very natural for students to get confused about which colleges accept ACT scores, what is the minimum ACT score required and so on. 

We have covered the top 10 colleges in the US accepting ACT scores. We hope that after reading this blog, you get some insight into which college to choose! 

Table Of Contents 

  1. Overview of ACT Exam
  2. 10 Best Colleges In The US Accepting ACT scores 
  3. Frequently Asked Questions On Top Colleges Accepting ACT Scores

Overview of ACT Exam

Let us first understand what is the ACT exam. 

In most simple words, ACT is an entrance exam that most colleges or universities take to make admission decisions. ACT is mostly used for undergraduate admissions. It's a multiple-choice, pencil and paper test. The main purpose of this test is to measure if a high-school student can cope with the academic rigour of a university or a college. 

The test is 2hr 55 minutes long and comprises four sections - English, Reading, Maths & Science. Each section of the ACT is scored on a 1 to 36 point scale. Your composite ACT score is the average of your four section scores, also on a scale from 1 to 36. 

Having a good ACT score is very important in order to get admission to some of the best universities. Colleges use the ACT score for various reasons like admission purposes, course placement & academic advising. Thus, it is very important that you prepare well for the ACT test. 

Suggested: Explore colleges accepting low ACT score

Let us now explore the top colleges that accept ACT scores. 

10 Best Colleges In The US Accepting ACT Scores 

Wondering about which colleges accept ACT scores? We have discussed the top 10 US colleges accepting ACT scores and their ACT requirements along with some key facts about the colleges. 

  • Massachusetts Institute Of Technology 

MIT is one of the most prestigious universities in the world and is highly reputed. The university is very selective and although there is no specific ACT cutoff, if you score anything less than 34, you might have a hard time getting admitted since the university is extremely competitive. 

Location

Cambridge, United States 

QS World Ranking 2022

1

ACT Requirement

  • ACT is required for all undergraduate student admissions.
  • ACT cutoff is not specified by the university. 

Average ACT Score (based on past admissions data)

34-36 

Undergraduate Tuition Fees

$57,590 per year + other expenses 

  • Stanford University 

One of the world’s leading teaching and research institutions, Stanford University is a private research university. The acceptance rate of the university is around 4.8% which makes the university extremely competitive. To get an idea of exactly how competitive Stanford is, you don’t have to look further than the long list of prominent companies founded by Stanford alumni- Google, Hewlett-Packard, LinkedIn, Yahoo, and Sun Microsystems etc. Thus, scoring anything less than 32 in ACT does not guarantee you a seat at the university. 

Location

Stanford, United States

QS World Ranking 2022

3

ACT Requirement

  • ACT is required for all undergraduate student admissions. 
  • ACT cutoff is not specified by the university. 

Average ACT Score (based on past admissions data)

32-34 

Undergraduate Tuition Fees

$57,693 per year + other expenses 

  • Harvard University 

Harvard is one of the prestigious universities in the US and is one of the Ivy League colleges. The university offers top-notch education and the professors at Harvard University are highly accomplished scholars who themselves are active researchers. Harvard has a notable alumni network including various Nobel prize winners. The university has an acceptance rate of 5% and expects students to score at least 33 on their ACT exam. 

Location

Cambridge, United States

QS World Ranking 2022

5

ACT Requirement

  • ACT is optional for undergraduate admissions. 
  • ACT cutoff is not specified. 

Average ACT Score (based on past admissions data)

33

Undergraduate Tuition Fees

$52,659 per year + other expenses 

  • California Institute Of Technology 

California Institute of Technology (Caltech) is one of the world-renowned science and engineering institutes that offers the best and high-quality education. It is among the finest Science and engineering institutions in the US and offers a range of courses in the same field. The Institute also manages JPL for NASA, sending probes to explore the planets of solar system and quantify changes on Earth. Having said that, Caltech is certainly very competitive and requires you to have at least 35 on your ACT. 

Location

Pasadena, United States

QS World Ranking 2022

6

ACT Requirement

  • ACT requirements have been eliminated because of covid-19 for students applying in fall 2022 and fall 2023. 

Average ACT Score (based on past admissions data)

35-36

Undergraduate Tuition Fees

$58,479 per year + other expenses 

  • University of Chicago

UChicago is one of the oldest universities in America and is among the top universities in the US and is number one in Chicago. The University of Chicago is affiliated with 92 Nobel Prize winners, over 275 Guggenheim fellows, 52 MacArthur "Genius" Grant winners, and 25 Pulitzer Prize winners. UChicago is also renowned for the unparalleled resources it provides its undergraduate students. The university has an acceptance rate of 7.3% and although it does not really have any ACT cutoff, scoring anything lower than 34 on your ACT might not guarantee you a seat at this university. 

Location

Chicago, United States

QS World Ranking 2022

10

ACT Requirement

  • ACT is optional for undergraduate admissions. 
  • ACT cutoff is not specified. 

Average ACT Score (based on past admissions data)

34

Undergraduate Tuition Fees

$61,179 per year + other expenses 

  • University of Pennslyvania 

UPenn is a private institution founded in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin. UPenn is often called the “Social Ivy” because students have active lives outside the classroom, and a “work hard, play hard” attitude permeates the campus. UPenn has 12 schools, four of which offer undergraduate studies. The Wharton School is one of the best business schools in the world. However, Don’t let the fun vibe of the school fool you, the school’s academics are rigorous. You would need a ACT score of 34 in order to get an admission at Upenn. 

Location

Philadelphia, United States

QS World Ranking 2022

13

ACT Requirement

  • ACT is optional for undergraduate admissions. 
  • ACT cutoff is not specified. 

Average ACT Score (based on past admissions data)

34 

Undergraduate Tuition Fees

$56,212 per year + other expenses 

  • Yale University 

Yale University is a prestigious Ivy League university and offers excellent education. It often ranks among the top 10 universities in the US and is very famous for its music and drama programs. Yale looks favorably upon students who deeply engage with an academic topic outside of traditional coursework. It is also most responsive to students with significant achievements in the arts. So if you’re exceptionally talented in art, music, dance, or film, you can submit your arts supplement to showcase your accomplishments. The acceptance rate at Yale is 6% and you would atleast need a 33 on your ACT in order to get accepted. 

Location

New Haven, United States

QS World Ranking 2022

14

ACT Requirement

  • ACT is optional for undergraduate admissions. 
  • ACT cutoff is not specified. 

Average ACT Score (based on past admissions data)

33-35

Undergraduate Tuition Fees

$62,250 per year + other expenses 

  • Columbia University 

Columbia University is very well known for its rich history, high quality academics and its excellent faculty. Columbia University is also the home of the Pulitzer Prize. Columbia is divided into three undergraduate colleges and The school of engineering is one of the oldest and most respected engineering programs in the US. There is no shortage of activities available to Columbia students; the university is home to more than 500 clubs and organizations. The college has an acceptance rate of 6% and although it does not have an ACT cutoff, you must score atleast 33 on your ACT. 

Location

New York, United States

QS World Ranking 2022

19

ACT Requirement

  • ACT is required for undergraduate admissions. 
  • No ACT cutoff specified 

Average ACT Score (based on past admissions data)

33-35

Undergraduate Tuition Fees

$65,524 per year + other expenses

  • Princeton University 

Fourth-oldest college in the United States, Princeton is a highly recognized research university which offers graduate, post graduate as well as research studies in a range of subjects. Princeton’s admissions process is more academically focused than that of its peer colleges. While students still need strong extracurricular profiles, admitted students often outperform their rejected peers in classes and standardized tests. The acceptance rate at Princeton is 5.6% and you would need atleast a  32  on your ACT. 

Location

Princeton, United States

QS World Ranking 2022

20

ACT Requirement

  • ACT is optional for first-year applicants applying during the 2022-23 cycle for Princeton’s Class of 2027. 

Average ACT Score (based on past admissions data)

32-34

Undergraduate Tuition Fees

$57,410 + other expenses

  • Cornell University 

Cornell is the Ivy League's only land-grant institution, with colleges and schools specialising in various niches and fields. While Cornell is known for having "relaxed" academic standards than the other Ivy League schools, it's crucial to note that each school and college within the university has its unique admissions methods and requirements. Students with focused, meaningful extracurricular activities are generally sought up by specialised schools. The college has an acceptance rate of 10% and you atleast need to have a ACT score of 32. 

Location

Ithaca, United States

QS World Ranking 2022

21

ACT Requirement

  • The university has suspended ACT requirement for students applying for 2022 first year. 

Average ACT Score (based on past admissions data)

32-34

Undergraduate Tuition Fees

  • $62,456 for endowed colleges (+ other expenses) 
  • $41,958 - $62,456 for state contract colleges (+ other expenses) 

Those were the top 10 colleges accepting ACT scores. However, do keep in mind that having only a good ACT score does not guarantee you an admission at these top institutes. You need to work on your overall profile in order to get an admission. That means, improve your extra-curriculars and work on overall academic performance. 

We hope this blog was able to provide you with some insight on best colleges in the US that accept ACT scores. For more information about studying abroad, get in touch with Yocket counsellors today! 

Frequently Asked Questions On Top Colleges Accepting ACT Scores 

Ques. What is the lowest ACT score colleges accept? 

Ans. When it comes to top universities, the lowest score they accept is 32-33. Apart from that, there are many US schools that accept applicants with 16 or 17 ACT scores. However, anything lower than 16 may give you some trouble in terms of getting admission. 

Ques. Is ACT mandatory for all undergraduate admissions? 

Ans. That depends on the college. Some colleges keep it optional and some may keep it mandatory. However, dont just focus on ACT scores, work on your overall profile in order to get admitted by the best universities. 

Ques. Which are the colleges that only accept ACT scores? 

Ans. The ACT requirements may vary depending on the colleges. Moreover, there is no discrimination with regards to which test the applicants should take. Colleges accept both ACT and SAT scores and evaluate your overall profile and not just your test scores. So essentially, there are no colleges that only accept ACT. 

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