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Missouri students hold steady on ACT; Illinois students improve


St. Louis, MO – Students in Missouri held steady on the ACT college entrance exam this year, while Illinois students improved a little.

The average ACT score for Missouri students was 21.6, the same as last year. Illinois students scored an average of 20.5, an increase from 20.3 last year and the highest since the state required all juniors to take the test.

Students nationwide posted the biggest score increase in 20 years, scoring an average of 21.1. Both boys and girls posted gains, as did all racial groups except Hispanics, whose scores held steady.

More than 42,000 students took the test in Missouri. The highest average score in Missouri was in reading, at 22, up slightly from the year before. The average math score was 21, up from 20.9 last year, and the average English score was 21.5, up from 21.4 in 2005. The average science score remained at 21.5.

In Illinois, officials say the gain is notable because so many students took the exam and it's difficult to increase scores with such a large and diverse population. Only Colorado and Illinois give the test to all students. More than 137,000 Illinois students took the test.

ACT Scores
State 2006 2005 2004 2003
Missouri 21.6 21.6 21.5 21.4
Illinois 20.5 20.3 20.3 20.2
Nationwide 21.1 20.9 20.9 20.8


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