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Thomas Broderick

Duke ACT Scores

If you want to be a Blue Devil, you’ve come to the right place. In this post, we’ll take a look at Duke ACT scores, admissions, and how you can up your odds of acceptance at this selective university overall.

Just started thinking about making Duke University your home for the next four years? Here are the basics: Duke is located in Durham, North Carolina. Its history goes back to 1838. Today, Duke currently offers fifty majors and fifty-two minors to its undergraduate class. And what a class it is! For the Class of 2019, only 11.4% of applicants were accepted.

Duke ACT Score Ranges

So what’s the ACT profile of those 11.4% of applicants? Take a look:

  • For Duke’s Arts and Sciences program, the middle 50% of accepted students scored between 31 and 34 on the ACT.
  • For Duke’s Engineering program, the middle 50% of accepted students scored between 33 and 35 on teh ACT.

If those sky-high numbers have you discouraged, take heart: those numbers don’t mean that students with lower ACT scores aren’t accepted. Duke, like other selective schools, considers the ‘whole student’ in its admissions process. Even so, getting a high ACT score will definitely give you a leg up in the admissions process if Duke is your first choice.

Upping Your ACT Game

If your composite score is currently below 31, make that number (and not perfection) your goal. Focus on the two tests from your last ACT (or ACT practice exam) in which you scored the lowest. Doing this, rather than trying to improve on all four tests, will be a better use of your study time.

If you’ve taken the ACT for the final time, and your score still isn’t what you’d like it to be, it’s time to focus other areas that will make you attractive to Duke’s admissions counselors.

Shining in Other Areas

No one’s perfect. So let’s make the best of an imperfect situation, shall we?

You may not be able to go back in time and change your grades from freshman year, but there are two things you do currently have control over: letters of recommendation and admissions essays. For the former, pick a teacher that knows you well and write them a note explaining why you think you’d be great at Duke. Also, don’t forget a stamped envelopes if your teacher wants to send their letter the old-fashioned way (though fewer and fewer schools accept actual letters these days!). Trust me, you don’t want to make Mrs. Jones shell out 49 cents for postage.

As for admissions essays, this is your only real chance to introduce yourself, so use it wisely. Have a friend/parent/teacher give it a once over before you send it in.

Final Thoughts

Whether or not you achieve that perfect ACT score, a well-manicured application package can still result in a ‘fat envelope’ from Duke University.

Good luck, and start learning about why North Carolina’s barbecue is superior to all others!

Improve your SAT or ACT score, guaranteed. Start your 1 Week Free Trial of Magoosh SAT Prep or your 1 Week Free Trial of Magoosh ACT Prep today!

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About Thomas Broderick

Thomas spent four years teaching high school English, social studies, and ACT preparation in Middle Tennessee. Now living in Northern California, he is excited to share his knowledge and experience with Magoosh's readers. In his spare time Thomas enjoys writing short fiction and hiking in the Sonoma foothills.


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