<span>Colleges for a 26 ACT</span>

Colleges for a 26 ACT

The ACT is a standardized test that measures proficiency in four subject areas: math, reading, science, and English. Rated from 1 to 36, a score of 26 on the ACT demonstrates a better performance on the exam than a significant number of high school students throughout the nation.

Is a Score of 26 Good?

Two million students take the ACT every year. The average score of all exams is 20.8, more commonly rounded to a 21, which makes a score of 26 much higher than the average test taker. Putting you in the 82nd percentile, you’ll be a competitive candidate for admission at a vast majority of schools. Since one of the benefits of doing well on the ACT is to have a large variety of colleges options to choose from, a 26 will be very helpful during the application process.

I Want to Go to College, What Do I Do?

Basically you just need to keep up the good work. Make sure you have a good college list of between 7 and 10 schools to apply to and see where your ACT score falls on their commonly accepted scale. Most schools will offer a 25th and 75th percentile when it comes to ACT scores, and if you’re at or closer to their 75th percentile, it means that you’re a good candidate for them. Keep up with your classes and get a head start on your personal statement or recommendations—college application season will come up quick!

If your ACT score falls in a 25th percentile range or below, it would make the college or university a “reach” school for you. If you want to improve your odds of getting accepting at the institution (or increase the likelihood for merit aid), you can consider retaking the test, especially if you’re a junior. While it will take some concerted effort, it’s possible to become a candidate for even selective schools, who look for applicants boasting at least a 30 ACT. To prepare for a retake, look at the score breakdown for each subject area of the exam and concentrate on the topics that need the most improvement. Pick up a book of ACT practice tests or download a practice test and time yourself during each simulated exam in order to get more comfortable with the test’s format. If it’s affordable, consult a tutoring service for assistance on increasing your score to an elite level.

For seniors, it would be a bit of a time crunch to retake the test unless the deadlines for applications are in the latter half of the season. Depending on your situation, since a 26 is already a great ACT score, it might be more beneficial to concentrate on ensuring the rest of your application is as marketable as possible. There are a number of aspects to every application, all of which typically include a personal statement, recommendations, and official transcripts. Keep putting in the effort in all classes to ensure a strong and consistent academic track record. If there’s enough time after school, consider joining any extracurricular activities that might help your application look even more impressive. Consult with a college counselor or academic advisor while composing your personal essay to ensure that it best represents your voice and achievements.

What Colleges Can I Apply to With an ACT Score of 26?

A score of 26 means that your application will be competitive at a significant number of colleges and universities. We’ve assembled a sample list below. While a standardized test score does not guarantee admission in and of itself, the following schools have a history of accepting applicants with a 26 on the ACT.

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Coe College
Cedar Rapids, IA

Founded in 1851, Coe College is small liberal arts institution and national leader in producing Fulbright Scholars. The college is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church and has a “more selective” admissions process. Coe College requires that 100%...

“…Incredible individualized education for students. Coe prepares students with phenomenal education while also creating a cohesive community that becomes apart of the Coe College experience. I couldn't imagine being happier than at Coe College which...” – Anna from Longmont, CO

Founded in 1860, Augustana University is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. It is the largest private institution of higher learning in South Dakota with admissions rated as “selective.” During the January J-Term, students...

“…Augustana is a great liberal arts school for those looking for a small institution that they can feel at home at. Class sizes are small and the professors really care; everyone on campus is super friendly! Being in Sioux Falls, you don't have to...” – Stephanie from Onawa, IA

Marietta College is a small, private liberal arts college that was founded in 1835. All first-year students are required to take a College Life and Leadership Laboratory course as well as a first-year seminar. Students can compete for places in the...

“…Marietta College is a private school with a great community. The people and professors are friendly and it's very easy to set yourself up to succeed. The workload is tougher because it's a private college, but if you think a small school is for you...” – Brian from Mays Landing, NJ

Lock Haven University is a public institution located off the Susquehanna River and near the Bald Eagle Mountains in Pennsylvania. The school is known for their STEP Initiative which prepares students for a technology-driven workforce by requiring...

“…Small town Kind faculty Great learning environment” – Kaley from Northumberland, PA

Arizona State University Online courses are taught by the same faculty who teach on ASU’s physical campuses, so online students learn the same material as on-campus students. Online learners also receive access to resources from all ASU libraries,...

“…Arizona State University online is a wonderful and interactive learning environment. All of the teachers have been extremely helpful and involved, not to mention exceptionally kind. I love Arizona State University Online and it has been the best...” – Toni from Green River, WY

Concordia University-Chicago is a private liberal arts institution based in River Forest, Illinois, with selective admissions. It is affiliated with the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and provides a curriculum focused on Jesus Christ. Popular fields...

“…Concordia Chicago is a great college with many people who want to get to know you. Despite it's flaws, such as people forming their own clicks, there is a lot of community. The classes are efficient as well. ” – Justin from Aurora, IL

Originally founded as a combination high school/private Congregational school, Washburn University is a 4-year university in the Kansas state capital of Topeka. Washburn hosts five colleges conferring undergraduate degrees in over 200 academic fields...

“…Washburn is a great small university. I love the fact that they have small classes, it is a much more intimate learning experience. The professors are great and are easy to talk to.” – Psychology Student

Missouri Western State University is a public school based in Saint Joseph, MI. MWSU is one of the less than 500 colleges in the US with an ABET-accredited engineering programs. Upon admittance to Missouri Western students rub the head of the statue...

“…This is a clean quiet school with good instructors. The campus layout is convenient. It is easy to get from one building to another.” – Donna from St. Joseph, MO

Founded by the creator of Domino’s Pizza, Ave Maria University is a Catholic liberal arts college in southwest Florida. Ave confers bachelor’s degrees in 33 academic majors and all classes focus on creating dedicated followers of Jesus Christ. As a...

“…If you're looking for one of the greatest Catholic schools, you've found it! Ave Maria is a great university complete with challenging academics, super supportive staff, a friendly atmosphere that makes you feel perfectly at home, ample opportunities...” – Roselyn from Cape Coral, FL

Wartburg College is a liberal arts institution affiliated with the Lutheran Church (ELCA) located in Waverly, Iowa. Founded in 1852, Wartburg has grown to offer more than 50 academic majors and preprofessional programs for its 1,500 students hailing...

“…The Wartburg student body is very close-knit. It is very common for professors and even the president of the college to invite students to have dinner at their house. The academics are stellar, especially in the music and science departments.” – Andrea from Waverly, IA

Founded in 1839 and nestled in the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia Military Institute is the oldest state-supported military college in the United States. VMI confers bachelor’s degrees in 14 academic majors within departments of Science, Liberal Arts,...

“…What an amazing institute! VMI is not for the faint of heart and spirit. Beautiful campus, awesome faculty and stunning parades! ” – Nicole from Onalaska, TX

Montana Technological University, more commonly known as Montana Tech, is a special-focus 4-year institution located in Butte, MT. Since its founding in 1900, Montana Tech has grown to encompass four schools and colleges offering numerous associate’s...

“…Laundry gets expensive. Awesome staff. Indian burger is the best burger out there. ” – Gage from Malta, MT

Founded in 1872, Lyon College is a 4-year liberal arts college in northern Arkansas and one of the oldest institutions of higher learning in the state. Lyon confers bachelor’s degrees in 15 academic disciplines. In addition, Lyon houses a Scottish...

“…The campus is extremely pretty and very inviting. There is a large diversity of students here at the college and they seem to get along well in the community. The students take part in activities and work together through a lot of things. ” – Cheyenne from West Fork, AR

Trine University is a private, 4-year institution established in Angola, Indiana. The college features a number of special academic opportunities, such as the Lifetime Guarantee program which promises graduation within 4 years, the Four Plus One...

“…i am very impressed with the process described to assist students throughout the studies. professors schedule and make themselves available to assist students and all instruction is provided by professors, not graduate students. the campus and its...” – Andrew from Kokomo, IN

Saint Xavier University is a private four-year institution affiliated with the Roman Catholic church. SXU operates two campuses, one in a residential neighborhood of Chicago and a second in suburban Orland Park, Illinois. The school provides a...

“…Saint Xavier University offers a small college at top quality. This University is small enough for students to have great one on one help from professors. Saint Xavier really takes care of their students academically and socially.” – Aaron from Chicago, IL

DeSales University is a private institution affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church. The school provides a liberal arts curriculum with a focus in the Catholic tradition. It is home to dance studios, TV and film studios, simulation laboratories,...

“…DeSales has a beautiful campus and a friendly environment. The people and staff here make one feel so at home, and they strive to help you in anyway they can. The small college feel is not a detriment, but a benefit.” – Stefanie from TELFORD, PA

Cornerstone University is a private, Christ-centered institution established in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Life on campus is rooted in the college’s Cornerstone Virtue Project, which guides students in the exploration of virtue throughout chapel...

“…CU has a community that encourages you to thrive in your area of study as well as having a great college experience. The Christian emphasis effects everything from dorm life to student activities to classes. CU changed my life. ” – Shanice from Holland, MI

Founded in 1863, Emporia State University is a public institution with “selective” admissions that offers a flat rate tuition. The Emporia State campus houses the Johnston Geology Museum, the Peterson Planetarium, and the Richard H. Schmidt Museum of...

“…Emporia State has a friendly, inviting and warm atmosphere about it. The professors and advisers care about you and the teacher's college is full of some of the most kind and understanding people you will ever meet. I loved it here, and was said to...” – Abbey from Wichita, KS

Edgewood College is a private liberal arts school based in Madison, Wisconsin, conferring bachelor’s degrees in 55 academic fields of study. The school was founded by, and maintains an affiliation with, the Sinsinawa Dominican Sisters of the Roman...

“…Edgewood College is one of the most beautiful colleges I have ever toured. The staff and professors are kind and caring. You are not just a number here, the school does what it can to help you succeed and even find you a job once you graduate.” – Sheldon from Bloomer, WI

The University of Tennessee-Chattanooga is a 4-year public university in southern Tennessee and one of three campuses in the UT System. UTC hosts colleges of Arts & Sciences, Business, Engineering, and Professional Studies conferring undergraduate...

“…This is a great university in my opinion, and the students that attend this school. Chattanooga is a beautiful city, and there is always something to do. Not only is the school very nice, but the teachers are great and are willing to work with you...” – Joseph from Lookout Mountain, TN

Southeast Missouri State University is a large, public institution located on the banks of the Mississippi River in Cape Girardeau. The school operates three regional campuses around the state in Sikeston, Malden, and Kennett. SEMO offers study...

“…Southeast Missouri State University is a friendly, safe, and inexpensive college. Anybody who gets the chance to take a tour of the campus will never turn back. This is a great college to further their education that will take them places for the...” – Melissa from Chester, IL

Minot State University is a public institution located in Minot, North Dakota. Minot State is home to three colleges, of Business, of Education & Health Sciences, and of Arts & Sciences. On top of the wide variety of majors and minors provided on...

“…Minot State is a great school for those who want a smaller school, but to still have the large events. The housing and food options are great and the professors are the best.” – Samantha from Fort Walton Beach, FL

Rockford University is a private, 4-year institution established on a suburban, 150-acre campus in Winnebago County, Illinois. Rockford offers over 80 undergraduate and graduate majors, minors, and concentrations through the College of Arts and...

“…Rockford is a great choice if you are looking for a small learning environment. The help of the Admission Counselor was great. I felt so welcomed when i went to Rockford for a visit ” – Patrick from Chicago, IL

Georgia Southwestern State University is a 4-year public institution and part of the University System of Georgia. GSW is home to five colleges and schools conferring bachelor’s degrees in 40 academic areas of study. Additionally, Georgia...

“…Georgia Southwestern has a great feel to it. It's like it's own tight-knit community. There is always something to do on campus.” – Lilly from Fitzgerald, GA

The University of Saint Francis is a private, Christ-centered institution located in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The campus features a number of historic facilities, such as the Brookside Mansion, which once was home to the entire college, and now hosts...

“…The University of Saint Francis is a wonderful university to attend. It has an amazing nursing program. I recommend this school to anyone looking for not only a good education but a good Catholic institute as well. ” – Sara

With campus a short distance from the Ohio River, the University of Southern Indiana is a 4-year public school in southwest Indiana. USI confers bachelor’s degrees in 87 areas of study featuring a community-focused curriculum with an emphasis on...

“…The University of Southern Indiana is a beautiful small campus which is easy to navigate. The campus is very clean and well kept. The professors are very knowledgeable, easy to contact, and genuinely care about the students.” – Alyssa from Ellettsville, IN

Ouachita Baptist University is a private, Christian, liberal arts college established in Arkadelphia, Arkansas. OBU students are required to complete two classes in religion and seven credits of chapel throughout their academic career in order to...

“…Ouachita to me cannot be rated! Ouachita's faculty and students create a positive influence that helps me become better in all that I do. I believe Ouachita helps students thrive in all they do and all they will do.” – Brian from El Paso, TX

Henderson State University is one of only 10 public schools in the state and has the alma mater “The School with a Heart.” Rated as having “selective” admissions, HSU offers the only bachelor’s degree in aviation in the state. The Reynolds...

“…Growing to remain a viable option for students. Very student friendly. A good mix of academics and fun.” – E. from Gurdon, AR

Randolph-Macon College is a 4-year, liberal arts institution located in Ashland, Virginia. The 116-acre campus offers 34 majors and 35 minors, as well as special-interest housing, eleven national Greek houses, and a recreation center that features a...

“…It is a very beautiful school. The teachers are great.” – Sierra from Louisa, VA

Founded in 1894, Louisiana Tech University is a 4-year public school in northern Louisiana. Louisiana Tech is home to five colleges of Liberal Arts, Applied & Natural Sciences, Business, Education, and Engineering conferring undergraduate degrees....

“…Louisiana Tech University is a great up and coming university. Over the past few years, its professors and colleges have gained countless recognition. If you are an engineer, business major, or want to be a teach, then Louisiana Tech is definitely...” – Terry from Converse, LA

Central Methodist University is a private, liberal arts institution established in Fayette, Missouri. While CMU is affiliated with the United Methodist Church, the university values diversity and diplomacy making students of all faiths welcome. CMU’s...

“…This is one of the friendliest schools I have seen. I really love the campus and enjoy my classes greatly. This school is super.” – Samantha from Boonville, MO

Nicholls State University is a public institution with “selective” admissions located in the rural town of Thibodaux, Louisiana, 50 miles west of New Orleans. The institution is named after Francis Redding Tillou Nicholls, a brigadier general for the...

“…nicholls is a terrific school for art students. i am one, and i love how diverse and welcoming our campus is; as i've remarked to a friend from another state, you know your classmates are awesome when all you have to do is say the game. and half the...” – Alexis from Napoleonville, LA

With campus along the shore of the St. Joseph River, Andrews University is a Christian school in southwest Michigan and the flagship institution of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Andrews hosts six colleges and schools featuring over 130 degrees...

“…An amazing place to meet international students, have professors that truly love their profession and God, and a place where a student can really build up their relationship with God.” – A. from Berrien Springs, MI

St. Bonaventure University is a small, private institution located in the rural town of Allegany, New York. It is associated with the Roman Catholic Church and provides a “values-based” curriculum. Journalism, accounting, and marketing are the most...

“…St. Bonaventure University is a place where everyone can find a home. I am constantly joining new clubs and making new friends. It is a supportive environment where I know I can go to faculty and staff for advice in any area of life, whether it be...” – Brianna from East Haven, CT

Originally founded in 1860 as St. Francis Solanus College, Quincy University is a 4-year liberal arts college in western Illinois affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church. Quincy grants undergrad degrees in over 40 academic majors and provides a...

“…Reliable, homey, and safe. ” – Dereasha from Jennings, MO

Chartered in 1835, Oglethorpe University is a private liberal arts college situated in Brookhaven, Georgia. The Oglethorpe University’s Gothic revival-style campus has been added to the National Register of Historic Places. It is home to the Crypt of...

“…Oglethorpe University is a beautiful campus. The school has an inviting, nurturing environment. The warm faculty enhances learning.experience.” – Jennifer from Atlanta, GA

Founded in 1808, Mount St. Mary's University is a private liberal arts institution affiliated with the Roman Catholic church. The school operates two campuses in Maryland, a main campus in the Catoctin Mountains of Emmitsburg and a satellite campus...

“…Academics are great but prepare to work hard. It has a community feel! They have a great selection of clubs and club sports” – Junior, PA

Ripon College is a private, 4-year institution established in the state of Wisconsin. The college features a unique core curriculum, the Catalyst, which consists of five courses throughout each student’s first three years that are designed to teach...

“…Ripon College is absolutely wonderful! The professors are knowledgeable and willing to help, and the class variety is immense. The only drawback might be that getting approval to live off-campus is difficult. ” – Katie from Oshkosh, WI

Situated on the banks of Little Riley Creek, Bluffton University is a liberal arts college founded by the Mennonite Church in northwest Ohio. Bluffton offers undergraduate degrees in over 85 academic areas of study. As part of the university’s...

“…Bluffton University is a small school that is based off of close community. With a college based on community the teachers know you by name rather than a number. This school is great for a good education and makes studying and communication with...” – Chelsea from Dayton, OH

Malone University is a private, Christian, liberal arts institution located in Canton, OH. Founded in 1892, Malone has grown to offer 91 undergraduate and 12 graduate programs, some of which are available online. Standing out from the 50-plus majors...

“…Malone is an awesome experience. The professors and students really care about every person who comes here. Everybody can feel right at home here in Canton, Ohio.” – Jeremy from Zanesville, OH

Founded in 1834, Franklin College is a private liberal arts and sciences college located in Franklin, Indiana, about 20 miles from downtown Indianapolis. Franklin's 207-acre campus features 50 majors to choose from that uphold the FC common set of...

“…Franklin College encourages and teaches their students to be strong individuals and leaders in the community. Their emphasis on integrity, service, and leadership equip the students with the tools they need to be successful upon graduating. ” – Joshua from Edinburgh, IN

Northwest University is a private, Christ-centered institution established in Kirkland, Washington. Full-time undergraduate students and faculty at Northwest are required to attend chapel three times weekly in order to earn spiritual life credit each...

“…After struggling for some time to get settled in to a college and call it home, I have finally found that at NU; the school is small, but large at it's core. Their mission is simple: to carry the call in ministry through education and their academic...” – Monique from Kirkland, WA

Erskine College is a private, liberal arts institution founded by the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church in 1893. Students are required to live on campus, in the rural and historic town of Due West, South Carolina. Erskine offers study abroad in...

“…Erskine is a community of students who are dedicated and motivated. It is a faith based school and that fact shines through. It's an amazing school and I am going to miss it.” – Mary from Alcolu, SC

Alma College is a private liberal arts institution affiliated with the Presbyterian Church. It is a residential college based in Alma, Michigan, in the state’s Lower Peninsula. Alma also operates an ecological research area in Vestaburg, which houses...

“…Alma is a very pretty little campus. Everything is fairly close and within walking distance. I love the classroom size, they are about twenty to thirty students per class and the professors know everyone by name. ” – Opal from Howard City, MI

Chartered in 1845, the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor is a Christian school in central Texas and the state’s oldest continuously operating college. UMHB grants bachelor’s degrees in 51 academic programs and all first year students are enrolled in a...

“…The feeling when you step into campus it feels like you are at home. The intense and adrenaline feeling when you watch the teams perform, always bringing their A game. To the great teaching techniques UMHB holds for their students future. ” – Carlos from Houston, TX

The University of Missouri-Kansas City is a 4-year public school and the largest university in Kansas City. Part of the University of Missouri system, UMKC offers undergraduate degrees in over 125 academic fields of study and is home to an honors...

“…At this school you will be among students who value their quality of their education. UMKC is a school you attend if you are serious about college and not looking to party. It is a place that is easy to adjust to. ” – Mariccia from Platte City, MO

Marian University is a private Catholic institution located in Indianapolis, Indiana. The curriculum at Marian University combines classroom theory with practical work experience. The school is home to a wetland and lowland forest, the Indy Cycloplex...

“…Marian is a very beautiful campus that is growing each semester. It is very clean, and the staff/students are friendly. FMO, Marian is a 10:10 rating.” – Raul from INDIANAPOLIS, IN

Northwood University is a private, 4-year institution established in Midland, Michigan. The college maintains a number of regional education facilities in Michigan, Kentucky, Indiana, Texas, California, and online in order for students to complete...

“…For an adult learning setting, this collage is great. The instructors are good at what they do. I am in my 7th and 8th classed and all of the instructors so far have tried to make the learning experience as enjoyable as possible.” – Matthew from Flint, MI

St. John Fisher College is an independent instution located in Pittsford, NY, that run on the Catholic tradition. St. John's 164-acres of campus house five colleges, has both a Math and Writing Center, and is within 7 miles of Rochester. The "College...

“…Saint John Fisher is an amazing college, with wonderful faculty and staff. The campus is beautiful. The technology is up to date. ” – Kiley from Marion, NY

Carroll College is private liberal arts institution and pre-professional college with “more selective” admissions. It is affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church and situated in the center of the Rocky Mountains in Helena, Montana. Carroll College...

“…Personally, I could not be happier with my decision to come to Carroll College. The small community feeling this school puts off and the availability of professors is unlike anything you will find at a larger university.” – Hadley from Billings, MT