ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Student scores on the ACT test have fallen to the lowest point in 30 years, with an average score of 19.5 out of 36.

The test is meant to demonstrate how prepared a student is for college-level course work.

For the past six years, those scores have been dropping.

Experts say the COVID-19 pandemic shutdowns made it worse.

Beth Hatt, School of Education Director at the University of Illinois Springfields, says additional factors, such as a student’s grade point average, is a better indication of how well a student will do in college.

“The ACT is a quick snapshot of math and English, primarily, in a timed test with multiple choice versus success in college, [which] has a lot to do with so many more things across different content areas, and so many other skills just aren’t reflected in the ACT,” she said.

Many universities across the country have opted to make the ACT optional, and don’t require students to submit a score as part of the admissions process.