College can be wildly expensive, with many students paying for tuition, room and board, textbooks, and more. Students can get ahead of high college costs by applying for scholarships and grants.
Scholarships are often awarded based on academic merit— and they sometimes consider your ACT or SAT scores. Strong ACT or SAT scores can make you a competitive scholarship applicant.
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What Is a Good SAT or ACT Score for Scholarships?
Generally speaking, the higher your SAT or ACT score, the more likely you will get a scholarship.
While the standard for a good SAT score varies, you should shoot for a 1200 or higher.
A good ACT score is above the 75th percentile for whatever school you are applying to. That means you are in the top quarter of scores and more likely to be considered for a scholarship.
10 Scholarships for High SAT/ACT Scores
Here are some scholarships for students with high SAT or ACT scores.
Bradford Barnes Memorial Scholarship
Who Is Eligible: The B. Bradford Barnes Memorial Scholarship is available for Delaware residents enrolled full-time at the University of Delaware with a GPA of 3.0 or higher and an SAT score of 1290 or higher, or an equivalent ACT score.
Application Deadline: Applications open in December and close in February
Scholarship Amount: Full tuition, room, board, fees, and books, renewable for four years
Point the Way Foundation Scholarship
Who Is Eligible: The Point the Way Foundation offers scholarships to students with a minimum SAT score of 1100 or ACT score of 22. They must also have and maintain a GPA of 3.0 or higher.
Application Deadline: Rolling deadline
Scholarship Amount: Varies
Troy University Scholars Award
Who Is Eligible: The Troy University Scholars Award provides full tuition for students with an ACT score of at least 30-32 or an rSAT score of at least 1360-1440 and a GPA of at least 3.7.
Application Deadline: Varies
Scholarship Amount: In-state tuition and housing
James J. Kaminski Scholarship Endowment
Who Is Eligible: The James J. Kaminski Scholarship is awarded to first-year SUNY Fredonia students majoring in chemistry or biochemistry. Students need an SAT score of 1250 or an ACT score of 28. To renew, students must maintain a GPA of 3.25.
Application Deadline: Students automatically apply for scholarships with their college application
Scholarship Amount: $8,000, renewable for up to three years
Edmund F. Maxwell Foundation Scholarship
Who Is Eligible: Edmund F. Maxwell Foundation scholarships are available to Western Washington high school seniors pursuing a college education at a private university. Students must have an SAT score of at least 1200 or an ACT score of 26 or higher.
Application Deadline: Application opens January 2023
Scholarship Amount: Varies, up to $5,000
Oprah Winfrey Scholars Program
Who Is Eligible: The Oprah Winfrey Scholars Program awards scholarships to Morehouse College students with financial needs who demonstrate both academic excellence and a commitment to leadership. Applicants need an SAT score of at least 1200 or an ACT score of 26 or over.
Application Deadline: Qualified candidates can apply each spring.
Scholarship Amount: Varies
Colorado Mesa University Distinguished Scholar
Who Is Eligible: Eligibility requirements include a minimum GPA of 3.75, ranking in the top 5% of their graduating class, and either a minimum ACT score of 29 or a minimum SAT score of 1340.
Application Deadline: Students automatically apply for scholarships along with their college applications.
Scholarship Amount: Full tuition for in-state students and $6,000 for out-of-state applicants
U.S. Air Force ROTC High Achievers Scholarship
Who Is Eligible: Students must have a minimum GPA of 3.0, and either a minimum ACT score of 26 or a minimum SAT score of 1240. They must also commit to four years of active-duty service after graduation and pass all physical fitness requirements.
Application Deadline: December 31, 2022
Scholarship Amount: Varies, up to full tuition
Mississippi Eminent Scholars Grant
Who Is Eligible: First-year applicants must have attended high school in Mississippi, a minimum GPA of 3.5, and either a minimum ACT score of 29 or a minimum SAT score of 1350, or be named a National Merit Scholarship finalist. Students must enroll at an approved postsecondary institution in Mississippi.
Application Deadline: September 15
Scholarship Amount: Varies, up to $2,500 per year
Engebretson Foundation Scholarship
Who Is Eligible: The Engebretson Foundation awards a scholarship to one high-achieving U.S. high school student annually. To apply, students must have a minimum GPA of 3.75 or be in the top 5% of their class and have an ACT composite score of 28 or higher or an SAT score of 1240 or higher.
Application Deadline: Applications are open January through March 2023
Scholarship Amount: $10,000
10 Automatic Scholarships for High SAT or ACT Scores
Many colleges are test-optional, meaning you can decide whether to submit your SAT or ACT scores in your application. You may still want to take a standardized test even if you apply to test-optional schools. A good score can still increase your chances of admission or a scholarship.
University of Missouri
Who Is Eligible: The University of Missouri offers various automatic scholarships, with higher-value scholarships going to higher-scoring students. Residents need a minimum ACT score of 21 or SAT score of 1060, while nonresidents need a minimum ACT score of 23 or SAT score of 1130.
Scholarship Amount: $1,000 up to full tuition and fees
University of Tennessee Knoxville
Who Is Eligible: UT Knoxville awards scholarships to high-achieving incoming first-year students. Applicants must have a minimum ACT score of 28 or SAT score of 1300 to be eligible for merit-based scholarships.
Scholarship Amount: Annual awards of $3,000-$9,000 for in-state students and $10,000-$18,000 for out-of-state students
Who Is Eligible: Texas Tech automatically awards merit scholarships based on class rank and SAT or ACT scores. Exact scholarship amounts and requirements vary by rank and score, but the lowest required SAT or ACT scores are 1000 and 19, respectively.
Scholarship Amount: $1,000 up to the full federally approved cost of attendance
The University of Mississippi
Who Is Eligible: The University of Mississippi offers automatic scholarships to entering students with a GPA of 3.0 or above. Award amounts vary based on ACT or SAT scores. In-state applicants require a minimum ACT score of 23 or SAT score of 1130, while out-of-state students require an ACT score of 25 or SAT score of 1200.
Scholarship Amount: Annual awards of $1,000-$13,072 for in-state students and $1,500-$26,292 for out-of-state students
University of Texas Arlington
Who Is Eligible: UT Arlington offers automatic scholarships ranging by test scores, GPA, and class rank. The minimum requirements to receive a scholarship are a rank in the top 50% of your class, a GPA of 3.5 or over, and an SAT score of 1100 or an ACT score of 22.
Scholarship Amount: $1,000-$12,000 per year
Utah State University
Who Is Eligible: Awards vary based on state residence. At a minimum, recipients must have an ACT score of 18 or SAT score of 960, and a minimum GPA of 2.7.
Scholarship Amount: $600 per year up to full tuition and fees
Florida Gulf Coast University
Who Is Eligible: Florida Gulf Coast University's automatic scholarships are based on both GPA and standardized test scores. The minimum requirements for a scholarship are a GPA of 3.5 and an ACT score of 25 or SAT score of 1220.
Scholarship Amount: $500 to up to the full cost of attendance after other financial aid
Middle Tennessee State University
Who Is Eligible: Middle Tennessee State University students automatically receive financial aid based on their standardized test scores. The minimum scores to be eligible are a GPA of 3.5 and an ACT score of 23 or an SAT score of 1130.
Scholarship Amount: Varies by year
The University of Oklahoma
Who Is Eligible: University of Oklahoma first-year student merit scholarships consider GPA, class ranking, and standardized test scores. The minimum requirements are a GPA of 3.25 and an ACT score of 24 or SAT score of 1160.
Scholarship Amount: $8,000-$69,100
Louisiana Tech University
Who Is Eligible: Louisiana Tech first-year students are evaluated for scholarships based on their GPA and SAT/ACT scores. The minimum requirements are a GPA of 3.0 and an ACT score of 22 or SAT score of 1030.
Scholarship Amount: $1,000-$9,500, renewed annually