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AISD Students Score Better Overall on SAT/ACT Exams Compared with State and National Average

Average ACT Composite Score at All-time High For District

Austin, Texas—Students in the Austin Independent School District earned higher overall scores on the SAT and ACT exams, compared with their counterparts across the state and nation, according to the College Board and ACT, Inc.

The average overall SAT score for AISD students was 1505, compared with 1498 nationally and 1437 statewide. The average ACT composite score for AISD students was 21.5—an all-time high for the district—exceeding the state and national average composite scores, both at 20.9.

“AISD will continue to encourage and prepare students to participate in the SAT and ACT exams because we are committed to ensuring all of our students are ready for college, career and life,” AISD Superintendent Meria Carstarphen said. “The SAT and ACT play a critical role in the college admissions process. The district will continue to increase the number of college-bound graduates because, in today's global economy, higher education provides a powerful path to success."

In 2013, the percentage of students who were college ready increased for all student groups in science and for all four subjects, except for Asian students, who in most cases already had the highest college ready percentages in each subject area, according to ACT’s Graduating Class 2013 District Profile Report.

As has been the case historically, more AISD students participated in the SAT exam with a total of 2,698 tests taken, compared with the ACT total of 1,496.  

Average student scores on almost every SAT and ACT subject area also exceeded state and national averages, except AISD’s average SAT writing score of 480, which was slightly lower than the national average of 488. On the ACT English test, the average scores for both AISD and the nation were about the same.

SAT Results

SAT results for AISD students during the 2012–13 school year showed continued improvement, compared with results from past years. Highlights of the SAT results include:

The district’s overall average SAT score of 1505 represented an increase from last year’s district average of 1496. The district’s overall average SAT score also exceed the state (1437) and the national (1498) averages.

  • The average score for AISD students in reading (501) and math (524) exceeded state and national average reading and math scores. In writing, the average AISD student score (480) was below the national average (488) and greater than the state (461).
  • Compared to the prior year, overall average SAT scores  increased in the 2012-13 school year for students attending Austin, Bowie, Eastside, Garza, LASA, LBJ, McCallum, Reagan and Travis.
  • Between 2012 and 2013, SAT reading scores increased for most student ethnic/racial groups.
  • The average SAT math scores for African American and Hispanic students increased, while the average math scores for Asian and White students decreased. In writing, average scores for almost all ethnic/racial student groups decreased.
  • In contrast with an increased level of SAT participation at the national level, district and state SAT participation levels decreased slightly from 2011–12 to 2012–13. While AISD student participation in the SAT decreased slightly this year, AISD student participation in the ACT test increased.

ACT Results

ACT results for AISD students in the 2012–13 school year showed continued improvement compared with results from past years. Additional highlights of the ACT results include:

  • Average ACT scores for the district have increased dramatically during the past 5 years, and the average AISD score exceeded the state and national scores in the areas of math, reading and science. In English, AISD and national scores were about the same and both exceeded the state scores.
  • Average ACT scores increased during a five-year period for almost all student groups on each test.
  • AISD had greater percentages of students who were college ready, compared with percentages at the state and national levels, in math, reading, science and all four subjects.

The SAT and ACT are national exams often used in the college admissions process. High school students take generally these exams during their junior or senior year of high school. The SAT is an assessment of critical reading, mathematical reasoning and writing skills. The SAT score range is 200 to 800 points for each subtest. A perfect SAT score is 2400. The ACT test assesses: English, mathematics, reading and scientific reasoning.  A perfect ACT score is 36.

To learn more about the SAT and ACT test results for AISD students during 2012-13, please read the full reports online at