<span>Colleges for a 36 ACT</span>

Colleges for a 36 ACT

The ACT is a standardized test taken by high school students throughout the country and consulted by colleges and universities during the application process. Comprised of four sections that test students in reading, English, science, and math, the exam is graded on a scale from 1 to 36, with 36 being the highest attainable score. While each section receives its own score, the composite score is traditionally what colleges care about most, which is rounded up to a whole number. A score of 36 is the highest possible score and indicates that you missed no more than 6 questions throughout the entire 215 question exam.

Is a Score of 36 Good?

The ACT is scored on a scale of 1 to 36 with 36 being the equivalent of a perfect score. As might be expected from such a high score, a 36 makes it possible to apply and be competitive for admission at every college in the country. This includes elite and selective colleges and universities, as well. In addition to attaining the highest score, a 36 generates the largest number of college options to choose from. Simply put, a score of 36 is as good as it gets.

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

After earning the highest possible score on the ACT, you’ve already fulfilled every requirement regarding the standardized test portion of the admissions process. If you’re a junior, focus on your GPA, whether it’s maintaining it or giving it a little bit of a boost to better complement your ACT score. Analyze your choices for college and determine your safety, reach, and match choices. Visit colleges and get your name (and your stellar academic performance) on their radar.

For seniors, focus on all other aspects of the college application process, from the personal essay to the list of after school activities. Dedicate time to composing a persuasive and thoughtful essay and show it to your college counselor for a critique. Be sure to contact a few teachers who made an impact on your high school career and ask for a letter of recommendation, as well.

Because your ACT score exceeds the benchmark for every college, it might make the application process feel more daunting due to the sheer volume of colleges to choose from. If you feel overwhelmed by the number of choices, schedule a meeting with your college counselor. They can help narrow down your list of schools and point you in the direction of a college or university that best fits what you’re looking for.

What College Can I Apply to With a Score of 36?

As the highest possible score on the ACT, a 36 ensures consideration for admission at every college. We’ve put together a sample of schools to consider below. If you don’t see the college you’re looking for on this list, rest assured that they will accept a perfect ACT score as well. Be aware that no score guarantees admission by itself but all of these colleges and universities have a history of admitting students who earn a 36.

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The University of California in Los Angeles, better known as UCLA, is one of 10 campuses in the UC system. With 109 academic departments and more than 125 majors offered, as well as an average of one billion dollars funded for research every year and...

“…ucla has a great student atmosphere: it includes great school spirit, rich history, excellent academics and research programs, and a well-rounded student body. it is also situated in west la, which is a great environment in itself to explore social...” – Kevin

Harvard College is an undergraduate liberal arts school located in Cambridge, MA, within Harvard University. Founded in 1636, this private, very selective, Ivy League college is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and was...

“…Harvard is a place of innovation and discovery. It is a community of scholars, who are very intelligent, ambitious, and collaborative. The most distinctive feature of Harvard is the vibrant energy that characterizes its student body, and that drives...” – CLAUDIA from CAMBRIDGE, MA

Stanford University is a research institution located in the California town of the same name. The more than 8,000-acre campus features seven schools, the largest of which is the School of Humanities and Sciences, and 80 residential facilities. With...

“…by far the most diverse, relaxed campus full of happy, friendly students of all ages. clean, green and exuding student pride everywhere you go. the best choice anyone could ever make!” – Dahlton from Jackson, CA

Founded in 1868, the University of California at Berkeley is the original member of UC System with a campus overlooking the San Francisco Bay. UC Berkeley is known for its liberal student activism, most notably The Free Speech Movement student...

“…The environment is incredibly welcoming and you'll always find a place to fit in. It's definitely challenging, but incredibly rewarding. Personally, I adore it.” – Whitney from Berkeley, CA

Founded in 1890, The University of Chicago is a private urban research institution. U of Chicago is home to an undergraduate college noteworthy for establishing the fields of Ecology and Sociology. In addition to classroom facilities, the U of...

“…The University of Chicago is known more for its academic rigor and all-encompassing intellectualism than its campus life or party scene. This is far from true, however! If you're looking for hard-hitting academics, a picture-perfect campus, top-notch...” – Chris from Houston, TX

Founded in 1754, Columbia University is a private research university located in the Upper West Side of Manhattan. The urban Ivy League campus houses 17 libraries and 20 schools, which offer upwards of 350 majors, as well as the Cathedral of St. John...

“…Columbia University is extremely challenging and therefore extremely rewarding. It does not allow you room to be average or mediocre because it encourages excellence. CU will show you what you are made of.” – Krizia from Fort Bragg, NC

Founded in 1817, University of Michigan in Ann Arbor is the state’s oldest university. U of M has very high research activity and is a often referred to as a Public Ivy. The university at Ann Arbor offers upwards of 260 degrees for undergraduates,...

“…The University of Michigan is truly an incredible place with incredible people. There is a lot of school pride about both academics and athletics, and although the academics are challenging, there is a good combination of studying and fun. I would...” – Sarah from Troy, MI

Duke University is a selective, private research university that calls Durham, NC, home. Founded originally as Trinity College in 1838, it was renamed by tobacco tycoon James Buchanan Duke in 1924 and became the “Gothic Wonderland” campus it is today...

“…Duke's a diverse school with students of all sorts of races and backgrounds. The education is vigorous, so you'll get out whatever you put in. There are hundreds of student groups, academic opportunities and living environments to choose from, so...” – Elisabeth from Durham, NC

A Public Ivy and space-grant institution, the University of Texas at Austin is one of nine academic universities in the UT system, and also the first. Founded in 1883 and home to 18 schools and colleges, it is one of the largest schools in the US but...

“…Liberal, accepting, community.” – Joanna from Austin, TX

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is an institution in the UNC system and the first public university to confer degrees. A member of the Association of American Universities, UNC Chapel Hill is considered a Public Ivy and houses a...

“…The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's campus, to me, is a great metaphor for the university as a whole; first off, it's full of color and zest, with all the beautiful trees everywhere. In addition, many of its buildings have very strange...” – Audrey from Athens, GA

Founded in 1746, Princeton University is a private, highly selective, Ivy League, the fourth oldest higher education institution in the nation, and one of the original nine colonial colleges. Princeton features a liberal arts education in the...

“…Being at Princeton feels a lot like winning the lottery on a daily basis. The people are incredibly interesting and I'm being challenged like I've never been challenged before. It's a place for those who love to work hard and play hard.” – Annika from Eugene, OR

The University of Southern California is a high-research institution located in Los Angeles, California, where it’s been educating students since 1880. The university is comprised of two campuses, the main University Park and the Health Sciences...

“…USC is the place for opportunities. You are not only paying for a great education, but also connections and resume builders that will help you get where you want in life. USC is a school for leaders and overachievers. ” – Madison from Los Angeles, CA

Brown University is a private Ivy League research university that was founded in 1764. The university offers more than 40 academic departments. The campus is home to program housing for students who share similar interests, plus substance-free,...

“…brown is awesome because it is very challenging and definitely a rigorous education, but students generally work together as opposed to competing against each other. the spirit on campus is one of acceptance of everything and everyone and anyone can...” – Danielle from North Potomac, MD

Founded in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin, the University of Pennsylvania is a private Ivy League institution in Philadelphia. UPenn hosts 12 schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over 90 academic fields of study. Additionally, UPenn’s Gothic-style...

“…Penn students are defined by their passion, even if it is undefined upon entering freshman year. Classes are so difficult that you have to experience them to understand, but the sense of accomplishment that comes with mastery over them is liberating...” – Josh from Dayville, CT

Northwestern University is a 4-year private research institution in the Chicagoland area. Northwestern is home to 12 colleges and schools and is renowned for its Medill School of Journalism, Kellogg School of Management, and Bienen School of Music....

“…Northwestern is very good at challenging its students with a variety of academic courses and sequences. The faculty are very attentive to students' needs, and it is easy to meet with professors to discuss any questions or comments related to...” – Claudia from Park Ridge, NJ

Originally founded as a land-grant university in 1870, Ohio State University is a public institution in Columbus and the third-largest campus in the nation. OSU confers bachelor’s degrees in over 200 academic fields of study. In addition to classroom...

“…Ohio State is it's own small world. Once you get involved, which is a must, you cannot walk across campus without seeing someone you know. From academics to sports, Ohio State is an excellent school with long standing tradition. ” – Amarilis from Newbury, OH

Founded in 1867, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is a public institution in central Illinois and the flagship campus of the U of I system. UIUC is home to 15 colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over 150 areas of...

“…Great friendly campus in the middle of cornfield, USA. Classes are theoretical and challenging in the engineering dept. However, it's easy to take a variety of other classes (art, history, dance, etc), regardless of your major.” – Alleycats from Urbana, IL

The University of Georgia is a land- and sea-grant public research university in Athens, GA. Founded in 1785, University of Georgia is one of three public universities to hold the title of the oldest public university in the US. With 17 different...

“…UGA offers an ivy league education, for a public school price. Situated in Athens, GA: ranked the #1 College Town that Rocks by Rolling Stones magazine in 2007 and one of 29 Must Visit places by LA Times magazine in 2009, there are plenty of things...” – Darien from Senoia, GA

Georgia Institute of Technology, more commonly known as Georgia Tech, is a 4-year research institution offering technology-focused education based out of Atlanta, GA. The institution has a number of instructional sites, including online and physical...

“…Overall, Georgia Tech is a fantastic school with millions of opportunities. The classes tend to be difficult, but that should not deter anyone from going to Tech. Although the going will be rough, Tech will only serve to open the doors to new...” – David from Broward County, FL

Founded in 1925, the University of Miami is a private research institution in south Florida. The U encompasses 11 colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over 180 fields of study. Away from the classroom, the Miami campus is home to...

“…The ambient and city surrounding UM contribute a completely unique cultural experience the likes of which are cannot be found any where else in the world. The academic environment is lackluster, and those seeking a truly rigorous scholastic...” – BME from Miami, FL

A private research institution located in Boston, Northeastern University was founded in 1898. Northeastern is home to nine colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over 90 academic majors. Additionally, the university operates a...

“…Northeastern is an urban university that still has a campus. The focus of the program are the co-op jobs that most students take three times throughout their five years at school. The focus is on career-track majors like engineering, pharmacy and...” – Catherine from Beverly Hills, MI

Founded in 1787 as the Pittsburgh academy, the University of Pittsburgh is a 4-year state-related research institution. Pitt is composed of 16 colleges and universities granting undergraduate degrees in numerous academic majors and minors. The Pitt...

“…Settled in the middle of Pittsburgh, students learn in one of the best, most interesting, and understated cities in the country. Pitt has it all with beautiful academic buildings, an abundance of interesting classes, and sports teams unifying the...” – Debra from Harrington Park, NJ

Boston College is a 4-year Jesuit Catholic University and the first institution of higher learning founded in the city of Boston. BC is home to eight schools and colleges conferring degrees in over 50 fields of study. As a Catholic university, Boston...

“…I absolutely love Boston College and everything it has to offer. The academic prestige is challenging but rewarding and the campus activities are numerous and extremely fun. The campus is beautiful and the spirit on campus is felt from a mile away.” – Katelyn from Taunton, MA

Vanderbilt University was founded in 1873 as a private research university in Nashville, Tennessee. Academically, the university focuses on an interdisciplinary approach,  encouraging students to take courses from any of the 143 areas of study. The...

“…If you're not rich, it's totally a different world you will be living in. (the Vandybubble) It's annoying but the experience and education is SO worth it. WE BLEED BLACK AND GOLD- LET'S GO DORES!” – Z from Nashville, TN

Founded by Thomas Jefferson in 1819, the University of Virginia is a public institution in Charlottesville. UVA encompasses 12 colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over 70 fields of study. For artistically-inclined students, UVA...

“…uva is a great school with lots of history, traditions and spirit. life on grounds is rigorous but engaging. the area surrounding charlottesville is very nice.” – Sidney from Charlottesville, VA

Named for a well-known abolitionist and philanthropist, Johns Hopkins University is a private institution in Baltimore and the first research university in the United States. JHU confers degrees and certificates in over 260 academic programs....

“…Johns Hopkins offers rigorous academics and research opportunities, and caters to a wide variety of academic interests. The smaller size of the school makes it feel like a home and connects you to the rest of your peers. There is a sense of unity...” – Vanessa from Thousand Oaks, CA

Emory University is a liberal arts institution located in Atlanta, Georgia, with a second campus in Oxford. The 600-acre campus in the Druid Hills neighborhood is home to four undergraduate and seven graduate colleges, as well as over a dozen...

“…Emory is surprisingly the perfect grounds for culturing new ideas. Even though it doesn't have a football team, Emory is still high in spirit and makes up for it in swimming and soccer. Above all, Emory is the perfect combination of nature-esque...” – Sindhu from GA

Originally founded as the William Marsh Rice Institute for the Advancement of Literature, Science, and Art, Rice University is a 4-year private institution in Houston. Rice encompasses six colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over...

“…Rice is outstanding in all areas of college life, from academics, to partying, right down to the weather. I was a little hesitant to leave New York for Texas and pay a little bit more than my other college options, but honestly Rice was worth the...” – Janet from Carmel, NY

Founded in 1960, the University of California of San Diego is a research institution located in La Jolla, CA. The 1,200 coastal woodland campus along the Pacific Ocean is home to six undergraduate colleges, five academic divisions, 5 graduate and...

“…Upon attending the University of California-San Diego, it has become more than an academic institute for me, it is a new home, a place of self-discovery, as well as a foundation to a strong and bright future. UCSD provides a welcoming environment for...” – Angela

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, more commonly referred to as MIT, is a private research university that focuses on scientific and technological research. Located on 166 acres of land in Cambridge, MA, MIT maintains five schools hosting 30...

“…The students here are all brilliant, motivated, inspired people. Everywhere you go there is amazing science happening, and every individual has terrific opportunities through the UROP program and the many research connections that MIT has to gain...” – Jedidiah from Acton, ME

George Washington University is a private university maintains three campuses, with the main campus located in Washington, D.C., just four blocks from the White House. George Washington University offers 75 undergraduate majors and 69% of students...

“…George Washington is the only place I'd want to be. There's no other college in the world that is just a few steps from the White House and the Lincoln Memorial. GW is a large school, with a diverse student body who all come together for fun events...” – Meredith from Marlton, NJ

Founded in 1841 by the Catholic Diocese of New York, Fordham University is a Jesuit institution in New York City and the oldest Catholic university in the northeast. With three campus locations throughout the city, Fordham is home to four...

“…Fordham University is a family with open arms waiting for you to walk in. Once you enter into the family, you are embraced and encouraged to tap into all of the family's resources. These resources WILL help your intellectual, moral and...” – Constantine from Randolph, NJ

University of California in Santa Barbara is a leading research institution in the city and state of the same name. UCSB is a member of the Association of American Universities, home to the National Center for Ecological Analysis, as well as an...

“…UCSB is an amazing university located in beautiful Santa Barbara, California and is surrounded. UCSB will provide any student with great academics, a healthy social life, ways to get involved and most importantly a degree that you can be proud of. I...” – Katy from Murrieta, CA

A top-ranked medical program and business school crown Dartmouth College’s liberal arts education. This Ivy League school, the second youngest but also the smallest, is located in Hanover, NH, where it’s easily the main attraction in town. 

Academic...

“…Dartmouth Creates a welcoming atmosphere during orientation and then, unlike other schools, mantains it. Administration is approachable due to the small size. The students are accepting and encouraging of one another.” – Big Green!

Tufts University is a 4-year private institution with three campuses in the Boston area. Tufts is home to 12 colleges and schools conferring bachelor’s degrees in over 90 academic majors and minors. The school is known for their popular a capella...

“…tufts is a phenomenal research university. it's a great community made up of interesting and friendly students and professors, and it's welcoming to students with every academic interest imaginable. you'll like it here.” – Thomas from Braintree, MA

Carnegie Mellon University is a research institution located in Pittsburgh, PA. Founded by steel magnate Andrew Carnegie in 1900, CMU is labeled the #24 University in the World by Times Higher Education and has been rated #25 in National Universities...

“…Carnegie Mellon University offers an intense four years of training and education for all its students, regardless of their major. Each and every student is immeasurably passionate about their field of study. After graduation, students come out in...” – Austin from Shaker Heights, OH

Founded in 1842 by the friars of the Order of Saint Augustine, Villanova University is a 4-year research institution in the Philadelphia area and the oldest Catholic school in Pennsylvania. Villanova is home to six colleges and schools conferring...

“…villanova is a medium-sized school with large-scale opportunities and resources. they value community, academics, sports, and the arts. there is something for everyone, and anything is possible here.” – Lauren from East Brunswick, NJ

Founded in 1853 and named for George Washington, Washington University in St. Louis is a 4-year private research university. WashU encompasses seven colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over 90 areas of study. For artistically...

“…Washington University is an incredible school that fosters individual scholastic as well as personal growth. The student body and faculty are diverse an open-minded. Also, the location is ideal due to its proximity to the business opportunities in...” – Nelson from Homewood, IL

Oberlin College is a liberal arts institution that was founded in 1833 in Oberlin, OH. Only two colleges operate on this private university’s campus, a College of Arts and Sciences and the oldest continuously operating Conservatory of Music in the...

“…What a life changing college experience. Here I feel challenged and exposed to so much diversity. I learn so much, from the classroom to the campus, I am enlightened everywhere I go here.” – Johnny from Lorain, OH

Founded in 1824, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is the oldest continuously operating technological research university in the United States. The main RPI campus in Troy, NY, is situated on 275 acres featuring 746 labs, studios, and technology...

“…Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is an amazing engineering-based campus, capable of preparing future engineers for their futures! Although expensive, the curriculum, opportunity, and experience are well worth it! I enjoyed my first year here,...” – Nikki

Founded by the Presbyterian Church in 1887, Occidental College is a 4-year liberal arts college in Los Angeles and one of the oldest institutions on the West Coast. Also known as “Oxy,” the college confers bachelor’s degrees in over 40 majors and...

“…As a private liberal arts establishment, Occidental College's main focus is on undergraduate study and research. With a smaller student body of under 2,000 students, there are many opportunities to become leaders and participants in cultural clubs,...” – Masha

Colorado College
Colorado Springs, CO

Colorado College is a liberal arts college in Colorado Springs, at the foot of the Rocky Mountains. CC offers over 80 academic majors and minors as well a thematic minor for students who wish to choose their field of concentration from several...

“…Colorado College has a unique academic system, with a 3.5-week Block Plan, which provides an intensive learning experience. The class sizes are small and the courses are often very hands-on and interactive with supportive professors. Aside from...” – Carmen from Belmont, MA

Originally founded as Washington College in 1823, Trinity College is a 4-year liberal arts college in Hartford and the second oldest college in Connecticut. Trinity offers bachelor’s degrees in 41 academic majors and provides the chance to earn 200...

“…This college is great if you want to become successful in life. Since its a liberal arts college it prepares you in other fields of study that do not directly relate to your major. Campus life is wonderfully filled with a diversity of people who are...” – Hard working student

The University of British Columbia is a public institution with campuses located in the city of Vancouver and the city of Kelowna. The college is deeply rooted in academic research and maintains a number of research facilities, such as the Bamfield...

“…This university has rigorous programs. The networking opportunities with potential employers is superb. This university is consistently involved in cutting edge research in most categories.” – Rachel from Canada

Reed College is an liberal arts and sciences institution in Portland, Oregon. The college is dedicated almost exclusively to academia and features bachelor's degrees in 40 majors and programs with no social clubs, fraternities, or varsity athletic...

“…Great college, but not for everyone. A lot of people either make it or break it the first semester. You have to take this college seriously or you won't last long.” – Katelyn from Bartlett, IL

Brandeis University is a private, nonsectarian institution founded by the Jewish community and named after the Supreme Court’s first Jewish justice. The 235-acre campus is located in the suburbs of Boston, Massachusetts, and home to more than 100...

“…Brandeis is an all inclusive school with everything a student could wish for. Busting at the seams with student diversity, clubs of all kinds, and professors that you can approach at almost any time, the smaller community of Brandeis University is...” – ManOfLaMancha

Founded by Congregationalists in 1887, Pomona College is a private liberal arts school in the Los Angeles area and the founding member of the Claremont Colleges. Pomona confers bachelor’s degrees in 48 academic majors in the arts, social sciences,...

“…pomona college stays true to its liberal arts mission statement of empowering me, the student, with my own education and how i want to design and experience it. the school employs professors who are passionate, above all else, about teaching and...” – Daniel from Honolulu, HI

Founded with funding from the estate of a Massachusetts Bay colonist, Williams College is a liberal arts institution in northwest Massachusetts. Williams is home to three divisions of Mathematics & Science, Languages, and Social Sciences conferring...

“…Williams College is a really fruitful environment where intelligence and hard work thrives. The interactions amongst students and professors breeds an environment in which ALL learn and benefit. The opportunities that this institution presents are...” – Demarius from Calumet City, IL

Bentley University is a private institution in the Boston area with a focus on combining business education with arts and sciences. Bentley confers undergraduate degrees in 25 academic fields of study and also enables students to customize a major....

“…The perfect school if you want to do business. The curriculum is tough, but it teaches you a lot about the business world. The people are awesome, everyone is really welcoming and the faculty is outstanding, and we live off of Microsoft Outlook and...” – Arjun from Cambridge, MA

Founded in 1795 as the first college chartered by the New York State Board of Regents, Union College is a 4-year liberal arts institution located in upstate New York. The first liberal arts college to offer a degree program in engineering, Union...

“…When I visited the campus, it had an extremely upbeat social atmosphere. I felt really comfortable there during the campus tour and I would suggest researching more about this college for anyone who has fears about leaving their home, because it...” – Matthew from Brooklyn, NY