The ACT posted results of their April 9th exam last night, promptly at midnight, Iowa time. But, unfortunately, a huge chunk of the exams have not yet been graded, and many students will have to wait for their scores.
More and more kids are choosing to take the ACT instead of the SAT because it is kinder and gentler – doesn't penalize you for guessing, doesn't try to trick you, and doesn't expect you to quote Nietzsche in your essay.
But at least the less-nurturing College Board can get it together to give all test takers their results at once, while the ACT randomly releases scores over a five-week period. This leaves hundreds of thousands of kids biting their nails, wondering why they were passed over by the scoring gods, uncertain whether to keep studying, sign up for a retake, or bail and switch to the SAT.
Many frustrated students on College Confidential who haven't received scores are angry at the ACT. But the Neurotic Parent Institute's position is that we feel sorry for the well-meaning midwestern non-profit testing org. Clearly, although almost 1.5 million kids paid to take the exam, ACT, Inc. is short on full-time staff.
Here is what they have posted on their site for students who did not receive scores:
After you test, you can check to see if your scores are available online. Multiple-choice scores from this test date will be first posted online beginning April 25 through June 3, 2011.
If your scores are not available on the first date listed above, plan to check back weekly up through the last date listed. Scores are processed and added each week, usually each Wednesday and Friday. Normally, all scores are reported by 8 weeks after the test date. There is no option for speeding the processing of scores.
If you take the ACT Plus Writing, your Writing scores will be posted as soon as they are ready, normally about 2 weeks after your multiple-choice scores. Your scores cannot be reported until after your Writing scores have been added.
For a company that is in the business of composing a reading comprehension test, the "check back weekly" on Wednesdays and Fridays part is a tad confusing. Should you check back just on Wednesdays, or on Fridays as well ? If you check back on both, isn't that, in fact, twice a week?
And, sorry ACT, but two other sentences need work:
- Normally, all scores are reported by 8 weeks after the test date.
- Your scores cannot be reported until after your Writing scores have been added.
For starters, in the first sentence, the one-digit number should be spelled out. And more seriously, in the second sentence, it must be clarifed that scores cannot be reported to colleges.
Using my critical reading skills (honed years ago for the SAT exam), it seems as if the poor guys at ACT, Inc. are not only experiencing sentence construction and ambiguity issues, but they also lack a proper staff. You would think it would be a priority to grade tests on other days besides Wednesdays and Fridays, but I guess those were the only times they were able to find some nice folks from the neighborhood to help them out.
So if you live in Iowa, are free on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, and uploading standardized tests is your passion, I would contact the ACT asap. Then you can write your essay about how you utilized your efficiency skills to relieve the the anxiety of a bunch of stressed-out high school kids.