TSS Blog

How High School Seniors in Tennessee Can Retake the ACT for Free This Fall

The Tennessee Department of Education (TDOE) is offering a chance for all high school seniors to retake the ACT for free this fall. The effort comes on the heels of a recent study that indicated an expected decline in ACT scores nationwide after a tumultuous learning year. Tennessee is the first – and only – state to extend a free retake ACT opportunity to every high school senior.

Why does my ACT score matter?

Comprehensive college entrance exams, like the ACT, are viewed as crucial components in determining a student’s postsecondary education readiness. For educators, exam results are an indicator of how much their work has prepared students for college and career. For students, ACT scores are a major factor in college admissions and scholarship funds available. In other words, a higher score increases your college options and potentially means more money in your pocket.

50% of students who participated in the Fall Senior Retake in 2019 increased their composite score from their junior-year score in 2018. Additionally, 3,825 seniors raised their composite score to a 21 or higher, allowing them to access more than $61 million in HOPE Scholarship funds.

Free ACT Prep Available

Through a partnership with TDOE, the University of Tennessee at Martin is offering free ACT prep online. Workshops and classes designed for rising 11th– and 12th-grade Tennessee students are available through the fall. Registration is available here.

TDOE has also expanded the state testing windows to provide additional options for all high school students. Districts across the state will be able to offer free fall ACT retake opportunities during one of the following three-day windows:

  • October 5-7, 2021
  • October 19-21, 2021
  • November 2-4, 2021

To learn more about the state’s college readiness testing program, including the ACT and SAT, visit TDOE’s College Readiness Testing webpage.

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