Resources › For Students and Parents ACT Scores for Public Universities A Side-by-Side Comparison of ACT Scores for Highly Ranked Public Universities Share Flipboard Email Print University of Georgia Consumer Sciences Building. David Torcivia / Flickr For Students and Parents Test Prep ACT Test Prep Test Prep Strategies Test Registration Study Skills SAT Test Prep GRE Test Prep LSAT Test Prep Certifications Homework Help Private School College Admissions College Life Graduate School Business School Law School Distance Learning View More By Allen Grove College Admissions Expert Ph.D., English, University of Pennsylvania M.A., English, University of Pennsylvania B.S., Materials Science & Engineering and Literature, MIT Dr. Allen Grove is an Alfred University English professor and a college admissions expert with 20 years of experience helping students transition to college. our editorial process Facebook Facebook Twitter Twitter Allen Grove Updated February 24, 2020 This article compares the ACT scores of accepted students for 22 highly ranked public universities. If your scores fall within or above the range in the table below, you're on target for admission to one of these great public universities. Also be sure to check out the ACT comparison chart for the top 10 public universities. Top Public University ACT Score Comparison (mid 50%)(Learn what these numbers mean) Composite 25% Composite 75% English 25% English 75% Math 25% Math 75% Binghamton 28 31 - - - - Clemson 27 31 28 34 26 30 Connecticut 26 31 25 33 26 32 Delaware 25 29 24 31 24 29 Florida 28 32 27 34 26 31 Georgia 26 31 26 33 25 30 Indiana 25 31 24 32 24 30 James Madison 23 28 - - - - Maryland 29 33 29 35 28 33 Minnesota 26 31 25 32 26 31 Ohio State 27 31 27 33 27 32 Penn State 25 30 25 31 25 30 Pitt 27 32 26 33 26 31 Purdue 25 31 24 32 26 32 Texas 26 33 25 34 26 32 Texas A&M 25 30 23 31 24 29 UC Davis 25 32 22 31 25 31 UC Irvine 25 32 23 30 25 31 UCSB 28 33 26 34 26 32 Virginia Tech 25 30 24 31 25 30 Washington 27 32 25 33 27 33 See the SAT version of this table To have a competitive application to any of these universities, you will ideally have ACT scores that are above the lower numbers. That said, if you are strong in other areas and your ACT scores a bit lower than ideal, you still have a chance of getting in. 25 percent of admitted students scored at or below the lower number. Note that if you are an out-of-state applicant, you may need to have scores significantly higher than those shown here. Most public universities give preference to in-state applicants. Grades Matter More than ACT Scores ACT scores matter, but your academic record is going to be the most important piece of your college application. Colleges want to see that you have taken the most challenging courses available to you. Success in Advanced Placement, IB, Honors, and dual enrollment courses will be a better indicator of your college preparedness than your scores on an exam you took on a Saturday morning. Your grade trend will also be important. A university would much rather see grades that are tending upward during your high school career than downward. Holistic Admissions All of these top public universities have holistic admissions. Admissions requirements will vary from school to school, but all of the universities take into account non-numerical factors. Many require one or more application essays, and your extracurricular involvement will also be important. Universities want to enroll students who are engaged both inside and outside of the classroom. Some of the schools will also ask for one or more letters of recommendation, so make sure you get letters from teachers who know you well and can speak about your potential for college success. To see a full profile of each college including acceptance rates and financial aid information, click on the names in the table above. You'll also find a graph of GPA, SAT score, and ACT score data for admitted, rejected, and waitlisted students. Data from the National Center for Education Statistics What SAT Scores Will You Need for 22 of the Nation's Best Public Universities? 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