Free ACT Retake Opportunities Available for All Tennessee High School Seniors

On Tuesday, the Tennessee Department of Education highlighted the free ACT retake opportunity for public high school seniors in Tennessee to boost their scores on the ACT college entrance exam.

Tennessee leads the nation in ACT access, offering public high school students the opportunity to take the ACT two times for free during normal school hours. Public school students test once in the spring of their junior year, and then have an opportunity to retake the ACT in the fall of their senior year during normal school hours. In Fall 2022, on average, 75% of students who participated in the ACT senior retake improved their superscore.

Districts across the state will be able to offer the free fall ACT retake opportunities during one of the following windows:

  • October 3-5, 2023
  • October 10-12, 2023
  • October 17-19, 2023
  • October 24-26, 2023
  • October 31-November 2, 2023
  • November 7-9, 2023


Since 2018, the General Assembly has provided funding for the ACT Senior Retake in every budget, with nearly 84,000 students having earned the necessary score to qualify for the Tennessee HOPE Scholarship. This totals over $550M to support future postsecondary opportunities for students across the state.

Aligned with the department’s Best for All strategic plan, the ACT provides essential data and context for state and district leaders on student readiness for postsecondary opportunities. Students who score a 21 or higher on the ACT also meet criteria for Ready Graduate, the state’s indicator to reward schools and districts whose high school graduates demonstrate postsecondary readiness.

In 2022, the department earned the inaugural ACT State Equity and Access Champion Award, which celebrates and honors the state’s commitment to postsecondary access by enabling more students to achieve their goals and dreams.

The ACT is a comprehensive college entrance exam covering a wide range of subjects that assesses students’ readiness for college. As the first state to provide this retake opportunity, the retake allows students to access more options for postsecondary education and financial aid, including the Tennessee HOPE scholarship.

To learn more about the state’s college readiness testing program, including the ACT and SAT, visit the department’s College Readiness Testing webpage. For Tennessee Department of Education media inquiries, email