Give Your Students the Work Ready Advantage

ACT National Career Readiness Certificate

The ACT National Career Readiness Certificate (ACT NCRC®) is central to Work Ready Communities as a measure of a well-rounded community.

ACT NCRC is an assessment-based credential powered by ACT WorkKeys®. Issued at four levels, the ACT NCRC measures and certifies the essential work skills needed for success in jobs across industries and occupations.

The ACT NCRC is widely used by employers, educators, workforce developers, and others with a stake in the success of the economy. Over 5,356,557 ACT NCRCs have been issued nationwide since the credential was introduced in 2006.

ACT NCRC Highlights

  • Awarded at four levels—Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze
  • Powered by ACT WorkKeys research-based Assessments – Workplace Documents, Graphic Literacy and Applied Math
  • Measures and certifies broadly relevant foundational work skills
  • Recognized and recommended by thousands of employers
  • Recommended for college credit by the American Council on Education (ACE)
  • Learn More About NCRC

ACT's New Career Report Provides Customized Guidance

A female professor teaching college aged students in a classroomA new ACT report, The Condition of Career Pathway Readiness in the United States, features information on the skills individuals need to succeed in various careers and “career clusters”—groupings of occupations that can be used by education and training providers to help students in educational settings. Its aim is to open opportunities for job seekers and help employers ... identify high potential candidates within different career pathways.

Job seekers who’ve taken the ACT® WorkKeys® Assessments and earned an ACT® WorkKeys® National Career Readiness Certificate® (NCRC®) can compare their scores to the benchmark scores displayed in the report for various career clusters, within different educational levels. For example, a high school student interested in carpentry can compare their WorkKeys scores to the career pathway benchmarks for entry-level Architecture and Construction to understand the foundational skills required to succeed in that career cluster.

This type of career exploration is designed to help high school students and adults understand their career options based on their skills and determine the types of jobs available to them. The report also features the projected number of future job openings and salary information alongside the benchmarks for each of the top occupation openings. A public Tableau dashboard featuring data from the report can be accessed here.

Resources for Educators

Click to view a PDf regarding helping your students prepare for workforce success
Help Your Students Prepare for Workforce Success
Click to view a PDf about making learners career ready
Ensure Your Learners are Career Ready
Click to view a PDf about apprenticeship programs
Apprenticeship Programs
Click to view a PDf about making a better prepared workforce
A Better Prepared Workforce
Click to view a PDf about making your students ready for the workforce
Prepare Your Students for the Workforce
Click to view a PDf about getting your students noticed
Get Your Students Noticed
Click to view a PDf about NCRC earnings and outcomes
NCRC Earnings Outcomes
Click to view a PDf about linking what is taught to the credential
Directly linking what is taught to the credential

Case Studies

North Carolina

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Preparing students for workplace success.

Western Alabama

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Ensuring a skilled workforce.

NCRC Examinee

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Wages and NCRC/WorkKeys skill levels.