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States with the Highest and Lowest Math Scores

Math is important to understand, as many careers in the STEM fields require knowledge of the subject. Which states have a good understanding of math
Mathematics
3 minutes
States with the Highest and Lowest Math Scores
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Math is an important subject and it rests at the core of many careers in the emerging STEM fields. Understanding the broad disciplines of math is not easy in any capacity, yet math scores can determine the course of any given student’s future path.

At Learner, we understand both the difficulty and the necessity of math as a subject and wanted to know what math looks like in the United States. We took a look at the average SAT math scores throughout the nation to find which states had the highest and the lowest. Check out the map and additional findings below to see how your state stacks up against the rest!

The states with the highest math scores are:

  1. Minnesota
  2. North Dakota
  3. Kansas
  4. Iowa
  5. Nebraska
  6. Utah
  7. Wisconsin
  8. South Dakota
  9. Montana
  10. Wyoming

The states with the lowest math scores are:

  1. Florida
  2. Idaho
  3. Delaware
  4. West Virginia
  5. District of Columbia
  6. New Mexico
  7. Rhode Island
  8. Texas
  9. Illinois
  10. South Carolina
  11. Oklahoma

Interesting Data Findings

  • Minnesota took the top spot with the highest average math score in the nation at 636, which is 106 points above the benchmark score of 530
  • The difference between the highest score (Minnesota) and the lowest score (Florida) is 156 points
  • Florida has the lowest math score in the U.S. at 50 points below the benchmark, with an average score of 480
  • Although Minnesota has the highest average score overall, North Dakota has a higher percentage of students meeting the math benchmark for the SAT
  • Florida may have the lowest average score, but West Virginia comes in last in terms of students meeting the benchmark with only 32% scoring at or above the required score

Methodology

We gathered data surrounding the math scores of each individual state from the 2021 SAT Suite Results from the College Board to determine which had the highest and lowest scores. In addition, we collected the percentage of students from each state that met or exceeded the benchmark math score for the SAT, which is 530, to further understand the correlation between each state’s average math score and meeting benchmark expectations.

State
Rank
Mean Score on SAT Math Section
% of Students That Met Benchmark
Points Above/Below Benchmark (530)
Minnesota
1
636
84%
106
North Dakota
2
628
85%
98
Kansas
3
623
83%
93
Iowa
4
620
79%
90
Nebraska
4
620
81%
90
Utah
5
617
80%
87
Wisconsin
6
611
76%
81
South Dakota
7
610
83%
80
Montana
8
607
81%
77
Wyoming
8
607
87%
77
Missouri
9
606
76%
76
Kentucky
10
603
77%
73
Tennessee
11
602
76%
72
Nevada
12
598
75%
68
Massachusetts
13
593
73%
63
Arizona
14
589
74%
59
Mississippi
14
589
72%
59
Arkansas
15
584
74%
54
Louisiana
16
583
68%
53
Hawaii
17
572
67%
42
North Carolina
18
571
68%
41
Alabama
19
568
64%
38
Virginia
20
567
64%
37
New Jersey
21
563
61%
33
Pennsylvania
22
557
62%
27
Oregon
23
554
60%
24
Alaska
24
553
61%
23
Vermont
24
553
60%
23
Indiana
25
544
58%
14
Maine
26
541
55%
11
Washington
27
535
52%
5
Georgia
28
534
52%
4
Maryland
29
531
51%
1
New York
29
531
51%
1
California
30
530
48%
0
Colorado
31
528
51%
-2
National Average
N/A
528
49%
-2
Connecticut
32
527
49%
-3
New Hampshire
33
526
48%
-4
Ohio
34
523
48%
-7
Michigan
35
508
43%
-22
Oklahoma
36
507
41%
-23
South Carolina
36
507
42%
-23
Illinois
37
498
38%
-32
Texas
37
498
38%
-32
Rhode Island
38
497
39%
-33
New Mexico
39
488
34%
-42
District of Columbia
40
487
36%
-43
West Virginia
40
487
32%
-43
Delaware
41
485
34%
-45
Idaho
42
483
33%
-47
Florida
43
480
33%
-50

About the author:

Mike developed his passion for education as a math instructor at Penn State University. He expanded his educational experience launching and running an Executive Education business - training over 100,000 students per year. As the CEO of Learner, Mike focuses on accelerating learning and unleashing the potential of students. 

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