What to Do About an ACT Score Mistake

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If you have taken the ACT exam and have received your ACT score back on the score release date, but strongly believe that something is amiss then just take a breath for a second. It's going to be okay. A mistake isn't the end of the world, and colleges and universities aren't going to immediately disqualify you from admissions if an error has been made. There are ways for you to get answers to your questions about your ACT score, and having a nervous breakdown is not one of them. So, here's what you can do if you think the scorers or scoring machine made a mistake with your ACT score.

ACT Score Mistake

Your first order of business if you suspect a mistake is to order a copy of your ACT exam answers, the answer key, your essay, and the rubric used to grade your essay through the Test Information Release (TIR) form. You can find a copy of that pdf, here. Keep in mind that there is an additional fee associated with requesting these forms! But if you suspect that your score is inaccurate, then it's worth the price, for sure.

You must also note that you can only request this score check if you test on a national testing date at a national testing center and must submit the request within three months after your test date. If you wait until later to do this, your request will be denied.

Also, your materials will typically arrive about four weeks after you receive your score report even if you request it right away. Don't expect to receive them prior to the registration deadline for the next test!

Once you receive the materials, go through each to determine if there really was a grading mistake. If you spot something, then there are definitely things you can do about it! You can request hand-scoring!

If an ACT Score Mistake is Suspected

The next thing you can do is to request a hand-scoring service. This can be done in lieu of doing the TIR form, but you won't have the benefit of knowing that another error hasn't been made if you don't take a peek yourself.

So, what is hand scoring? This means that an actual living person will go through your exam and grade your test, question by question. You can even be present while this happens, but of course, you'll have to pay additional fees for this as well. (Like everything else on the ACT, extras will cost you!) If you do want your test hand-scored to ensure your ACT score is accurate, you'll need to make the request within three months of receiving your score report.

And here's how you can do it! Submit your request in writing, including your name as given at the time of testing (in case you've gotten married or something), ACT ID from your score report, date of birth, test date (month and year), and test center. Enclose a check payable to ACT for the applicable fee. At the time of publication, the prices were as follows:

  • $40.00 multiple-choice tests
  • $40.00 Writing Test essay
  • $80.00 both the multiple-choice tests and Writing Test essay

Resolving an ACT Score Mistake

If you use the TIR form or request a hand-scoring service and an error is found, then a corrected score report will be sent to you and any other recipients you selected without an additional fee. Whew! You'll also have your hand-scoring fee returned to you. Plus, you'll have the benefit of knowing that you've done everything possible to ensure that college admissions officers get an accurate representation of what you can do on a big test like the ACT.

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Your Citation
Roell, Kelly. "What to Do About an ACT Score Mistake." ThoughtCo, Apr. 5, 2023, thoughtco.com/i-think-theres-a-mistake-with-my-act-score-3211159. Roell, Kelly. (2023, April 5). What to Do About an ACT Score Mistake. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/i-think-theres-a-mistake-with-my-act-score-3211159 Roell, Kelly. "What to Do About an ACT Score Mistake." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/i-think-theres-a-mistake-with-my-act-score-3211159 (accessed May 31, 2023).