ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) — A university in northwest Missouri said it's going to start allowing applicants to submit their best college admission test scores from different exam dates.
Missouri Western State University announced this week it will allow incoming freshmen next year to "superscore" their ACT results in an effort to boost the number of students eligible for academic scholarships, the Kansas City Star reported.
The ACT is a standardized college admissions test with English, math, reading and science sections. Students who take the ACT typically receive a composite score, which is a compilation of the results from the individual sections.
Superscoring allows students who have taken the exam more than once to submit their best scores from each of the ACT's four sections regardless of the testing date. More than 200 schools nationwide allow superscoring for college admission exams, according to the Princeton Review.
School administrators hope the new model will allow more students to qualify for sliding-scale academic scholarships based on their high school GPA and ACT results at a time when students and educators are grappling with the cost of an education.
"We're always looking for a way to make Missouri Western affordable," said Paul Orscheln, the university's associate vice president for enrollment management and student retention. "By superscoring the ACT this could allow more students to regain full admission to the institution."
School officials were motivated by data showing more students last year would have obtained the ACT score needed to be eligible for admission, and at least 70 freshmen would have received a better scholarship if they could have superscored, Orscheln said.
"We want to recognize their achievement and recognize their potential for being successful here," he said. "(The ACT) is a big stressor for high school students and their parents. I firmly believe if they are going to take the test multiple times and spend the money to do so, they should get the full benefit."
The new practice will apply to freshmen starting undergraduate classes in fall 2018.