CHARLESTON, W.Va. - West Virginia graduates outperformed the nation in English and reading according to data released Wednesday by ACT. 2015 ACT scores also show graduates are holding steady with students across the nation. West Virginia’s composite score on the college entrance exam increased from 20.6 in 2014 to 20.8 in 2015, while the national composite score remained the same at 21.0.
Across the state, 11,289 of this year’s high school graduates took the ACT. Of the state’s graduating class, 66 percent took the ACT at least once.
The state 2015 ACT average English score was 20.6; math, 19.7; reading, 21.5; and science, 20.7. Also noteworthy, 96 percent of West Virginia’s 2015 ACT-tested graduates aspired to postsecondary education.
“We still have work to do to ensure our high-school graduates are equipped with college and career ready skills, but I am proud of the progress made by our teachers, students and parents,” said West Virginia Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Michael Martirano. “I am encouraged that so many of our graduates indicated they aspired to postsecondary education.”
According to ACT’s yearly report, The Condition of College & Career Readiness 2013, college and career readiness problems persist among U.S. high school graduates, with the majority ill-prepared for success at the next level. In West Virginia, only 21 percent of the test takers met all four of the ACT college readiness benchmarks. The ACT college readiness benchmarks are scores used to indicate a student has at least a 50 percent chance of getting a grade of B or higher in first-year college courses.
Sixty-nine percent of West Virginia students scored at levels indicating they were ready for freshman English courses, compared to 64 percent of students nationwide. In reading, 48 percent of state test-takers were ready for freshman courses, ranking above the national percentage of 46. Thirty-four percent of West Virginia students were college ready in math, compared to 42 percent nationally. In science, 34 percent of West Virginia students were ready, compared to a national average of 38 percent.
The ACT is a curriculum-based achievement test made up of four separate exams in English, reading, mathematics and science, plus an optional writing test. The test is administered in all 50 states and is the predominant college entrance exam in 25 states, including West Virginia. ACT also assesses a student’s ability to succeed in college.
West Virginia’s complete results can be found by visiting: http://www.act.org/newsroom/data/2015/states/westvirginia.html
For additional information, contact Kristin Anderson at the West Virginia Department of Education Office of Communications at 304-558-2699 or Kristin.Anderson@k12.wv.us.