Your test scores are a significant and important component of your college application. Whether you take the ACT, SAT, and regardless of which SAT IIs you choose to take, you will more likely than not take your exams more than once in an effort to improve your score. Oftentimes the sections that improve during one sitting aren’t the same as the sections that improve during your next sitting. Wouldn’t it be great if you could take one section that you scored super well in from one sitting and pair it with another strong section from a different sitting? That, our friends, is called supers coring, and some colleges are fine with it.
Super scoring is essentially taking your highest scores from each test that you sat for and compiling them for colleges to review. Here’s an example of super scoring for the ACT:
Let’s say you took the ACT in April and June. Here were your April scores:
Now, you decide to re-take because you want to improve everything except English. Your June scores are:
Super scoring allows you to be evaluated as if these were your scores:
Your highest scores in each category make up your new composite score. Cool, right? Yes, but you can’t report the bolded compilation of scores as your scores. Colleges oftentimes ask that you submit all of your exam official reports and then they commit to consider only your highest scores in each section. This results in a composite similar to the bolded option above, but naturally you’d report the results from each individual sitting. You yourself would not super score your results, but rather report all of your test scores and then they would isolate the highest scores. Thus, the “allows you to be evaluated as if these were your scores” written above, not “allows you to claim these scores as resulting from one sitting.”
What about the SAT? Yes, the SAT is super-scorable as well. Schools that allow you to superscore one allow you to superscore the other. You can’t superscore both, though. You have to commit to one. Just because you got a 35 on the Math section and a 31 on the English section of the ACT and a 690 on the Math section and 800 on the English section of the SAT, doesn’t mean that you can mix and match. That’s crazy talk.
Let’s say you took 3 tests total and you only want a college super score 2 out of those 3 tests and act as if the third test didn’t happen at all? That is possible but it depends on the school’s requirements. It depends on if schools have the self-report option. Schools have different standards for reporting. Certain schools ask you to submit all of your scores from every exam you sat for, and other schools have score choice, where you can choose which exams to report from the ones you sat for. Be sure to review each school’s individual policy on this matter, because every school is a little bit different. If a school commits to super scoring, you can be sure that they will in fact consider the highest scores from each of your sittings and it is to your benefit to submit all of your test scores. It’s never in your interest to lie.
Reach out to us if you have any questions regarding super scoring. We know it can be a confusing process, but we love it and we’re here to help.