The Pandemic Interrupted College Preparation, Which Impacted College Application

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Lisa King, director of the American College Application Campaign at ACT’s Center for Equity in LearningLisa King, director of the American College Application Campaign at ACT’s Center for Equity in LearningA new report released by the ACT college readiness exam nonprofit organization found that participation in college preparatory activities increases a student’s likelihood of attending college. But those same results showed that 46% of the class or 2021 had one or more of their college prep activities canceled due to pandemic restrictions, possibly leading to greater educational inequity.

“This report shows how participating in college preparation activities is directly linked to positive college application behaviors,” said Lisa King, director of the American College Application Campaign at ACT’s Center for Equity in Learning.

The survey was conducted with high school seniors who took the ACT test between Sept. 2020 and June 2021. ACT is using the results of the survey to encourage high schools to create more college preparatory opportunities for their students and recommend that high schools avoid virtual only events that limit access by technology and bandwidth.

The survey also found that those students who learned in-person, and those who took duel-credit courses, had an increased likelihood of participation in college preparation activities.

Preparatory activities include visiting a college, speaking with counselors about the process of applying, applying for financial aid, and speaking with college representatives that visit a high school campus.