It would be a shame to live in a country where students are encouraged to attend college and follow their dreams, yet there was a major road block standing in in the way of many of their dreams. Unfortunately, the United States of America has decided to set ridiculously high standards for every student wishing to receive higher education. While the college admission process in itself is all together extremely complicated, the colleges across the country have decided to use one factor to evaluate students present and future education potential.
The American College Testing, commonly known as the ACT, sets the standards for not only admission, but also greatly affects financial aid. I fell that to say one test can determine a students succes and potential, is so ridiculous. In a country that stresses equal opportunity, the ACT directly impacts students. Colleges says they take other factors into consideration, however, many colleges will not even consider you if you have below a certain score. Scholarships are so heavily dependent on it as well.
The truth is most scholarships generally begin around an ACT composite score of 30. However, 50% of students score below a 21. 1% of students score a 34 or higher. Therefore only 1% of students are directly eligible for considerable scholarship money to out-of-state colleges. Scholarships should be awarded to a student who has done something in High School and who has goals. Since most colleges require a personal essay, would this not be a good way to judge a student to receive money to go to their school? Also, many schools like LSU have TOPS.
However, with Louisiana having such a low rate of students who attend college, it seems unfair to require an ACT score in order to receive TOPS. Those students who are disadvantaged and cannot afford to pay $40 for an ACT test, or end up having only one chance to take the test, yet still make an effort to attend college, should be able to receive a college education in their state. It is also weird that colleges automatically send scholarships to students with a certain ACT score. For example, a student who slacked off in every high school class and was basically lazy, can receive a full ride to many colleges with a lucky ACT score of 32. However, a student who has put considerable effort into school for four years and makes a 28, receives no scholarship money from the same colleges. Which student, is more likely to contribute to the college and learn from their school? The one who will probably never show up to class, or the one who will and who will work hard? Colleges, however claim that when they have a student with an A in math and a student with a B in english, and vice versa, which student do they take? Well, It is so much easier to base a students potential off of a pattern of four years of high school and a resume than one test.
Yet the ACT fails to mention any of that to colleges. The ACT is an easy way for good test takers to get into whichever college they want and get as much money as the gullible colleges will give them. However, this means colleges are turning down acceptance and financial aid to the other 99% of students who did not score nearly perfectly on the trick-filled test. The ACT is nothing like college and therefore placing such emphasis on it is absolutely ridiculous. The Colleges who require the ACT are judging and over analyzing many American students who simply want to receive higher education. How hypocritical is it for the government to place so much emphasis on high schools to encourage college, but basically deny acceptance and scholarships to millions of students who did not score perfectly on one test? Obviously, many colleges are beginning to see a problem with the ACT as there are now over 800 colleges that do not accept the ACT.
However, with over 5,000 colleges in America, there is still a long way to go. The ACT is altogether too expensive, too complicated, and thinks way to highly of itself. I do not believe such a test could correctly label any individual as one who can excel in the world.