Cancelling ACT Scores

ACT Score Deletion

ACT policies allow students to have their scores from some ACT administrations deleted by submitting a written request to ACT Institutional Services. If the request is granted, this means that ACT will permanently remove all student records associated with that test date from their files. Upon receiving a written request, ACT Institutional Services will mail the appropriate form for the student to complete and return. This policy generally applies to tests taken on a voluntary basis; scores that are used to verify participation in state-mandated ACT testing are not eligible for deletion.

ACT Score Report Cancellation

Test-takers also have the option of not reporting their scores to colleges or universities (this is referred to by ACT as "cancelling college reports"). Those wishing to cancel score reports must do so no later than noon CST on the Thursday following the test date. Test-takers should note that this deadline is several days before the earliest possible score reporting date (decisions about score report cancellation must be made before a student knows his or her scores).

Involuntary Cancellation of ACT Scores

Score cancellation without the student's consent is a common penalty for violations of ACT policies on test security and academic honesty. ACT has the right to involuntarily cancel the scores of any test-taker who misrepresents his or her identity, uses prohibited materials while taking the test, or fails to adhere to all test center and registration rules. Repeated violations may be punished by temporary or permanent bans on future testing.

ACT Procedures for Investigating Testing Irregularities

When ACT suspects that an individual test-taker's scores are compromised, the organization conducts what is called an "Individual Score Review." A preliminary review examines the evidence, and if warranted, the process moves to a formal review. There are four possible outcomes to a formal review: voluntary score cancellation by the student, retesting, involuntary score cancellation by ACT, or score reinstatement due to insufficient evidence. Students whose scores are involuntarily cancelled have the option to appeal this decision to an arbitrator, but his or her decision is binding and final.

Cancellation of Registration

Registered students who change their minds and decide not to take the ACT are ineligible for refunds of registration fees, but they may request refunds for any optional services purchased if they do so in a "timely" fashion (typically by the end of the current testing year in late August). Registered test-takers are allowed to make registration changes via their online ACT account or by phone. The indicated late registration deadline is the last day on which students can change their test date or test location, both of which have fees attached. Students who simply do not show up for their test will receive neither scores nor refunds.

Cancelled Test Administrations

If an ACT test administration has to be cancelled by the organization for reasons such as inclement weather or power outages, the test will be rescheduled. Registered students will be contacted by email and given a new test date, and for that date and location only they will not be charged any additional fees. The ACT website maintains a current list of test centers in need of rescheduling.

Should I Cancel My ACT Scores or Score Reports?

There are many issues to consider when making decisions on cancellation of scores and/or score reports. Do you have enough time to take the ACT again before your college application deadline? Don't forget that there is a mandatory 60-day waiting period before you will be allowed to retest, and if this will cause you to miss the deadline, it's probably not a good idea to cancel your score report. Were you feeling well mentally or physically during the test? If not, then college report cancellation might be something you should consider. Do your preferred universities superscore? If so, then you have nothing to gain from report cancellation. If your colleges mandate reporting of all test attempts, then it's not your decision in the first place. If your favored university's admissions policies will allow you to send only your highest scores from a single test, then score report cancellation might be worthwhile if you really feel you didn't do your best. Think carefully about all of these issues before making a decision that will cost you a significant amount of time and money.

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