act test

What is the ACT writing test (and why should I take it)?

When you sign up to take your ACT® test, you have the opportunity to take the optional ACT writing test—a 40-minute essay test that measures your writing skills. Some universities (or academic programs within those universities) require the ACT writing test for admission, while others do not. This is why ACT made the writing test the only optional section of the overall ACT test. If you are considering taking the writing test on your test day, your first priority should be to determine whether your top university choices require the writing exam. Keep in mind there is an extra fee to take the writing test, so finding the requirement before registration will save you money! What does the test measure? The writing test contains a single question describing a complex issue and asks you to sha...

Why every point on the ACT test matters

Did you know that increasing your ACT® Composite score by a single test point can expand your access to financial aid and increase your chances at being admitted to university? Here are some reasons why: ACT scores are a huge factor in how universities decide which students to admit (along with students’ performance in school and the quality of their university application). Universities are looking for high-achieving students to admit, and a high ACT score is a key indicator of academic achievement. ACT scores also play a big role in merit-based scholarships—awards that are based on achievement. Many financial awards set a certain ACT score level as a requirement, so achieving a specific ACT score could affect the amount of award for which you qualify. Every point matters. This is w...

Should I retest?

Many students choose to take a university admissions exam more than once to achieve their desired scores. One report by ACT showed by more than half of students increased their ACT Composite score by taking the test a second time. Here are some reasons to consider taking a university admissions test again after your first time: If you had any problems during the test. Just like any other day, things can go wrong during test day. Maybe you arrived at the test center later than planned. Maybe you didn’t fully understand test directions before the test started. If test day didn’t go as planned, you probably didn’t perform the best on your test. You weren’t feeling your best on test day. Besides being uncomfortable, maybe you were battling illness and it became a distra...

When is the best time to take a university admissions test?

Taking an admissions test is a huge step toward getting accepted at the university of your choice. Your scores affect your eligibility for admission and can also open doors to scholarships and other financial aid. One key to opening up those opportunities is knowing when to take the test and making a plan to use your scores in the most efficient way. Many factors can influence when you should take the test, including whether your chosen university has an application or scholarship deadline, or perhaps an academic program or major you are persuing that requires a test score. This is why waiting until grade 12 to take the test for the first time might be too late. Many students choose to take the test a second time during grade 12 to achieve a higher score. Testing the first time during grad...

UPDATED: Webinar on ACT Test Prep

Webinar: What Test Prep is Right for Me? Duration: 60 minutes Students face high stakes when taking a university admissions exam, as the scores they achieve are a huge factor in gaining acceptance to university. That is why so many students take advantage of free or paid test prep. But choosing the right test prep tools can be overwhelming. Watch a free webinar designed to inform students, parents, and educators about test prep options created by the makers of the ACT test. We cover which test prep tools students should consider, based on their needs, and talk about strategies students can use to fully prepare for test day. Click here to watch the webinar!

ACT Online Prep: Prepare for the ACT Anytime, Anywhere!

Are you looking to get an edge on taking the ACT test with the flexibility to prepare whenever and wherever you have time? ACT Online Prep is your answer. ACT Online Prep is the only online test preparation tool from the makers of the ACT test. ACT Online Prep can give you the confidence and readiness to achieve your best score on the ACT test. Featuring real questions from previous versions of the ACT test, ACT Online Prep helps you become familiar with the test content (and receive a predicted ACT test score) while receiving personalized learning paths to track and improve your progress. With your six-month subscription to ACT Online Prep, you will receive: Full-length practice tests to simulate the actual ACT exam A free mobile app Tools to track your progress A game center to further t...

Three steps to write a résumé that universities will notice

You might think that writing a résumé or CV is only useful when applying for work, but many universities will encourage you to include one with your application materials. Effective résumés give universities a greater idea of who you are and what you want to study. Résumés should illustrate who you are (outside of what you provided on your application) and highlight experiences you were not able to mention in an essay or application form. Remember these tips to create a university application résumé that stands out: 1. List all that you have done What have you accomplished during your high school career? Awards, honors, leadership roles, community service projects, skills, talents, work experience – don’t forget to write it ALL down! 2. Decide what goes and what stays Once you ...

The three most overlooked parts of a university application

The application essay, résumé, and letters of recommendation are all vital parts of your university application, but equally important are these three components that are often completed quickly and without much thought. When these are completed carefully and with attention to detail, you can turn these elements into strengths and catch a university’s eye. 1. Application form These forms are usually the first form you will fill out online when applying for university. These typically require information such as your full name and address. Sometimes a university will not let you attach the rest of your application materials until you have completed the general application form. Remember: Do not wait until the last minute to fill out this form. It might take a couple of days for the un...

How Students Can Make the Most of End-of-Term Break

End-of-term break gives you a well-earned respite from the classroom. But getting a break from school doesn’t mean you can’t use the time wisely. It can give you time to put things in order before taking the leap to university, get advice and help from family and friends, and even keep your brain active before returning to school. Challenge yourself to tackle the following tasks during break: Complete university applications (Grade 12). You can finalize your university choices and complete applications in time for regular submission deadlines, most of which are in January and February. Dig into that college essay (Grade 12). It’s an important part of the college application process and requires a lot of thought and planning, so why not spend time away from the classroom to write a draft or...

Report: Does Test Anxiety Bias ACT Scores?

Test anxiety raises concerns about assessment validity and fairness. Keeping Your Cool: Does Test Anxiety Bias Performance on the ACT?, a new study from ACT, investigated possible measurement bias due to anxiety on the ACT test. The study revealed several insights about test anxiety: Many examinees reported test anxiety, but anxiety did not have significant negative effects on ACT scores—in general, for males and females, and for ethnic groups. Test anxiety was most strongly related to feeling unprepared for the ACT. Test takers should minimize anxiety by following practical recommendations supported by this study, even if is not expected to affect ACT scores. Read the report at this link. Click here to learn more about how students can reduce test anxiety.

December ACT test: Your last chance to take the ACT in Vietnam until April!

The 7-8 December ACT test dates will be your last chance to take the ACT in Vietnam until April! Have you registered to take the ACT? There is still time to sign up! The late registration deadline is Friday, 30 November. Don’t wait until it’s too late! Sign up for the ACT December test dates today! Are you planning on studying in the United States? Most US universities’ application deadlines occur in January and February. Taking the ACT in December is a great opportunity to share your ACT scores during the university application process. Remember: You can choose to take the ACT on Friday, 7 December or Saturday, 8 December, in the morning or the afternoon, depending on test center availability. Also: The ACT test is accepted by all US universities and more than 200 intern...

Infographic: How to request accommodations on the ACT test

ACT is committed to serving examinees with documented disabilities by providing reasonable accommodations appropriate to the examinee’s diagnosis and needs. ACT has established policies regarding documentation of an examinee’s disability. To assist international students who currently receive accommodations in school due to a professionally diagnosed and documented disability, see this checklist to guide you through the process of requesting test accommodations on the ACT® test.