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Release of ACT and SAT Scores

Background

Students applying for admission to undergraduate programs at the University of Kentucky are required to submit either ACT or SAT scores as academic credentials. The policy of the Office of Undergraduate Admission is to use a student's highest configuration of sub-test scores, even when the sub-tests were taken on different test dates. The different sub-tests are then combined to establish a new overall test score. For example, some students may have earned their highest English sub-test score on the ACT Assessment on one test date and their highest math sub-test score on another. These high scores are used to re-compute new ACT Composite Scores that are used to judge applicants' academic qualifications. In some cases, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions disseminates these re-computed scores to administrators and others within the university community to assess the readiness of each entering class of students.

Policy Statements

IRAA is charged with the responsibility of providing summary test statistics on admissions exams to state and federal governments, as well as agencies and businesses requesting information on university students. IRAA’s policy is to compute summary statistics for SAT and ACT scores based on each student's highest set of scores on a given test date. The Office does not re-compute an overall test score from sub-test scores earned on two or more test dates.

Consistent with reporting conventions for the Common Data Set (CDS), IRAA provides annual test statistics for all first-time, first-year (freshman) degree-seeking, students enrolled in a given fall semester. Summary test statistics include full- and part-time students. In addition, SAT and ACT summary data reflect the scores of students who began their studies during summer, international students (nonresident aliens), and students admitted under special arrangements. All summary statistics for the SAT and ACT are accompanied by the percent and number of first-time, first-year students enrolled in a given fall semester who submitted national standardized test scores.  SAT scores are based on re-centered scores.

The most common summary statistics reported for the ACT and SAT are the 25th percentile (i.e., the score that 25 percent of test takers scored at or below) and the 75th percentile score (i.e., the score that 25 percent of the test takers scored at or above). The 25th and 75th percentiles establish the range of scores for the middle 50 percent of students submitting scores for a given test. IRAA also provides the average (i.e., mean) scores on the ACT and SAT to those requesting such information.

In special instances, IRAA will convert SAT scores to ACT scores based on a concordance table developed by ACT staff. OIR will then combine SAT and ACT scores into an overall set of ACT scores for a given first-year class. Some decision makers within the university community use these test statistics internally to judge the academic preparation for each entering class. The practice of combining converted SAT scores and ACT scores to generate a single set of test statistics is undertaken only for internal assessment purposes. Summary data compiled in this manner are not considered to be official test statistics for the University of Kentucky.

IRAA provides summary data on both the ACT and SAT to those who request it. However, the Office often advises users who have had little experience with admissions tests that ACT scores provide a better indication of UK students’ academic preparation. The superior diagnostic value of the ACT can be attributed to the fact that significantly more students take and submit ACT scores (approximately 90%) than SAT scores (approximately 32%).

Effective Date: November 1, 2004