‘It’s Such a Fast Test’: Stillwater Student Breaks Down Perfect ACT Test Score

KTUL - May 31, 2023 6:32 am

Shelley Lin Stillwater student with perfect ACT Test score. May 2023.(Stillwater Press)

A Stillwater High School student said hours of hard-work and helpful strategies contributed to her perfect ACT test score.

Shelley Lin said she took the April 15 test, and although she spent a lot of time preparing for it, she was still stunned by her results.

“I almost fell over because I was like no way,” said Lin. “It was like 36, 36, 36, 36 on my computer screen.”

Lin said she studied several hours for the test, but didn’t get nearly as much time as she would have liked.

She spent time answering practice questions and acquired other material that she believed made a difference.

Lin said that taking too long to answer questions is ultimately what she believes can sink a person’s chance of scoring higher.

“ACT asks easy questions in confusing ways,” said Lin. “In general, you don’t want to be stuck on a question for too long cause it’s such a fast test.”

In 2022, ACT results collected from across the country showed that Oklahoma’s graduating students only scored an average composite score of 17.9.

The highest average subject score was in Reading at 18.6.

The lowest average subject score was in English at 17, Math at 17.3, and Science at 18.2.

Less than half of 1% of all students who take the ACT earn a perfect score.

“Don’t be afraid to guess on stuff,” said Lin

“For Reading and Science, a really good strategy that worked for me is like not even reading the passage. Just doing the questions first and then looking for it.”

Lin said it’s important to note that students don’t have to be perfect to get a perfect score, and can still miss a few questions on each section to achieve a 36.

She said that for the Math section, students can also look up practice tests to see what kind of material they can expect so they can study up ahead of time.

Lin said that she’s now shifting her focus to college applications, to work towards a career as a doctor, with her dream school locked in as Washington University in St. Louis.

“I’m leaning toward cardiology a bit,” said Lin.

She said her family and community have been supportive of her achievement and she wishes the same success for all Oklahoma test takers.


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