Checking a standardized test score can be very stressful. There is that rush of adrenaline that goes through your body as the internet page loads, and of course the internet chooses that very moment to go slower than usual. Or, maybe it’s just the overload of students dying to know their score. Regardless, the anticipation is high. Once you receive your score, new feelings obviously come.
When taking a standardized test, such as the SAT or the ACT, many of us set a goal we would like to reach. I know when I first took the ACT, I set my goal score at a 23 with the national average being 21. My overall score was a 24, which was pretty exciting for me considering I surpassed my goal.
But then, the question came to my mind, “Should I share my score?”.
Okay, maybe those exact words didn’t immediately come to my head, but it’s a serious question we should all consider. Do you put it Twitter? Facebook? Do you tell your friends? Teachers? Do you tell the world or keep it private?
Sharing your score may not seem like a big deal, but picture this: you’re sitting around with your friend at lunch and you casually mention your ACT score. You worked hard for it and you’re proud. Your friend also mentions their score, which is 5 points higher than yours. All of the sudden, your hard work seems to be shadowed by this significant difference in scores.
Doubts may come to your mind on your intelligence, capability, and work ethic. You may even consider taking the test again just in order to match their score. Now, there is nothing wrong with a bit of friendly competition. There is also nothing wrong with your friends score becoming a motivational tool for you. But, when the comparison leads to self doubt there is a problem.
Score sharing (score bragging) can lead to increased stress in students. It creates an unhealthy competition between peers.
Don’t share your score in order to brag or inflate your ego, and never share your score to someone in order to hurt them. By this I mean using your score as an intentional way to make them feel inferior. We are all just trying to do our best. At the end of the day, we all take these tests to reach a common goal: college! Lastly, never feel pressured to share your score. Whether your score is what you wanted or not, it is your choice whether to tell your friends and the world.