Senior achieves perfect 36 on ACT, offers advice

Natalie Johnson
Social Media Manager

Last April Missouri offered a free ACT to juniors state wide. Senior Ben Krasnoff received a perfect 36 on his ACT. Of all ACT test takers only 0.06 percent receive a perfect score. Photo by Natalie Johnson

Despite having invested time in studying, senior Ben Krasnoff was surprised when he saw his perfect score. A 36 on the ACT is a rare and highly coveted feat.

The ACT is an exam used by higher education establishments to evaluate prospective students. The test covers the subjects of math, reading, science and English, and is scored on a scale of one to 36. One’s score can be used to determine eligibility for admittance, financial aid and other scholarships. Krasnoff was one of the nearly 0.06 percent of ACT test takers to achieve a perfect score.

Krasnoff has advice to offer to peers taking the ACT exam.

1) It’s important to know the pattern
“This enables you to find questions that are easy and extrapolate from there,” Krasnoff said. Understanding how the test works makes it easier to pinpoint areas requiring more time, or types of questions that are quick to solve. Krasnoff had to work the hardest at perfecting the English section.

2) Take a practice course
Krasnoff took a class by the Princeton Review, a service that provides ACT and SAT takers with preparatory material, as well as the ACT prep class offered here at WGHS. Krasnoff thought the high school class was “pretty useful” and said it was helpful to take practice tests to review his work and note what questions he got wrong. and offer preparation materials.

3) You don’t have to do the questions in order
Krasnoff found it beneficial when budgeting his time to be mindful of how much time each question required. By skipping around on the questions, he was able to get more completed and correct.

4) Review materials learned a long time ago
The ACT tests on material learned throughout student’s education. When preparing, Krasnoff looked back on material he was taught in previous years. “They’re not testing you on calculus,” Krasnoff reminds test takers. He found refreshing his memory to be helpful on questions about older curriculum.

Krasnoff does not like the ACT. He thinks it enables admission offices to “not take into account who you are as a person… it dehumanizes a student down to a number.” Although Krasnoff understands why there is test (there needs to be a general way to measure academic intelligence), he believes there must be a better way to assess students.

He wishes to attend Washington University in St. Louis, and although undecided on a major knows he wants to go into something related to science, something he has always been interested in.

Academics have always been a top priority of Krasnoff. He considers himself to have a very encouraging family that has supported him throughout his academic career. Krasnoff describes his family as “very intelligent people” that he wants to be like.


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