Claire Southard, daughter of Steve and Julie Southard and a senior at Notre Dame Regional High School earned the highest possible ACT composite score of 36. In addition to Claire receiving a composite score of 36, she achieved a perfect score of 36 in each subject area.
Fewer than half of 1 percent of students who take the ACT earn a top score. In the U.S. high school graduating class of 2019, only 4,879 out of nearly 1.8 million students who took the ACT earned a top composite score of 36.
The ACT consists of tests in English, mathematics, reading and science, each scored on a scale of 1–36. A student’s composite score is the average of the four test scores. The score for ACT’s optional writing test is reported separately and is not included within the ACT composite score.
In a letter to the student recognizing this exceptional achievement, ACT CEO Marten Roorda stated, “Your achievement on the ACT is significant and rare. Your exceptional scores will provide any college or university with ample evidence of your readiness for the academic rigors that lie ahead.”
The ACT is a curriculum-based achievement exam that measures what students have learned in school. Students who earn a 36 composite score have likely mastered all of the skills and knowledge they will need to succeed in first-year college courses in the core subject areas.
ACT scores are accepted by all major four-year colleges and universities across the US.