What Is the ACT Test?
The ACT exam or American College Testing is a standard test that most of the higher education institutions use to define the level of applicants’ training. This data helps colleges and universities to compare potential candidates and choose among them.
Test scores are reviewed together with your letter recommendations, admission interview, high school classes, GPA, and personal statement. And if you have participated in various extracurricular activities, they will be reviewed as well.
Remember that the better your test results are, the more options you’ll have for attending the university/college. Moreover, you’ll have more options for paying for your education.
What Is on the ACT Test?
The ACT consists of questions divided into four sections:
You should remember that there is also an optional 40-minute Writing Test that helps to evaluate your writing skills. Your task will be to write an essay on a topic chosen beforehand. This additional test is a necessary part of the exam in some colleges and universities.
So before passing the exam, you should visit the official site of the college/university you want to apply to and check whether they have an ACT overview and some specific requirements for passing it. It will help you to prepare better.
How Many Questions Are on the ACT?
The number of questions varies depending on the test section. In total, there are 215 questions in the standard ACT test format. Here’s how they are distributed:
- English – 75 questions
- Math – 60 questions
- Reading – 35 questions
- Science – 35 questions
Moreover, you’ll have an additional 40 minutes to write an essay and pass the Writing Test.
Here is more about how lohg is the ACT.
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When Is the ACT Test?
The test is held every year in September, October, December, February, April, June, and July.
Most applicants pass ACT in spring (during junior year) or fall (during senior year). It is pretty convenient as it gives you time to retake the test if something goes wrong on the first try. In such a case, you’ll have plenty of time to improve your result before applying to a college or university.
So make sure you have enough time for both preparation and retaking the ACT. All the exam dates are also available online, so you can be sure you won’t miss your chance.
How Much Is the ACT Test?
Here are the ACT prices for 2020/2021:
- The ACT (no writing) – $60.00
You will get reports for you and your high school. You will also get reports for up to four colleges (but make sure to provide codes when you register).
- The ACT with writing – $85.00
You will get the same number of reports as in the previous one, but will also have to write an essay.
- Test option change – $25.00
You can reimburse the Writing Test fee (on written request) if you happen to be absent on the exam day or decided to take the one without writing.
There are also a lot of additional services and fees. To make sure you don’t overpay register beforehand. You need to be sure there won’t be any important events and other pressing matters on this day. This way, you won’t need to pay for changing the date and will save some money.
Also, make sure you are 100%-ready for the ACT for the same reasons mentioned above.
Moreover, check if you are eligible for some fee waivers.
ACT Test Scores Range
The ACT score (total of four scores) shows your academic levels in English, math, reading, and science. The score for each of these disciplines ranges from 1 to 36. After you pass the exam, your points for each section are computed. That’s how you get the ACT composite score. It also has a 1-36 range.
If you have problems with understanding your results, you can make a couple of things:
- Compare your scores to those of other students.
- Check if your result is good enough for the college or university you are applying to (on its website, etc.)
- Analyze your skills and try to understand if your scores meet your abilities.
How Hard Is the ACT Test and How to Be Ready?
So what is the ACT exam, if not a little more difficult than usual, test with a time restriction? Limited time is also its main difficulty. So make sure you know well the format of the test and the peculiarities of different sections not to spend extra time on each. It takes a lot of practice to prepare well and learn all the pitfalls, so be ready to invest enough time.
Make Sure That the ACT Is Right for You
Remember that you are free to pass both the SAT and ACT. We highly recommend learning the rules and peculiarities of both exams. Ask Google what is the ACT test, and the SAT test. Check colleges’ and universities’ admission requirements and ask your friends who already passed the SAT or ACT.
With all the information at hand, try to understand which test fits you better, and choose the right one.