Prepration for ACT | AHECounselling

Prepration for ACT

The ACT (originally abbreviated as American College Testing) test is a standardized one used to determine eligibility for college admission in the United States. It is run by the nonprofit group ACT.There is also an optional writing test. It is accepted at all four-year colleges and universities in America, as well as by more than 225 universities around the world.

Each of the main sections of the ACT test is scored individually on a scale from 1-36. A composite score, which is the sum of all four sections, is also provided.

Everett Franklin Lindquist, a University of Iowa professor, introduced the ACT in November 1959 as a rival to the Scholastic Aptitude Test. The Social Studies test was changed to a Reading section in 1989. A subsection of the social sciences was also included. In February 2005, an optional Writing Test was added. In fall 2017,


ACT, Inc. states that the ACT assessment measures high-school students' educational development and ability to complete college-level work using multiple choice tests. The four skill areas covered by these exams are English, arithmetic, reading, and science. The optional Writing Test measures skills in writing and planning a short essay ACT specifically states that the scores are an indicator of college readiness. Each subtest's scores correspond to entry-level college courses in English, math, science, the humanities, and biology. According to ACT, Inc.'s 2003 research, there is a correlation between a student's ACT composite score and their likelihood of earning a college degree.

ACT incorporated the objectives of instruction from middle schools and high schools across the United States to create the test. It also reviewed approved textbooks covering subjects in Grades 7-12 and surveyed educators about the knowledge skills that are most relevant for success in postsecondary education. ACT publishes a technical guide that summarizes the results of studies on its reliability in predicting freshman GPA and equating different high schools' GPAs to measure educational achievement

Because of the significant differences in funding, curricula and grading among U.S. secondary schools, due to American federalism and local control, the high number of private, distant, homeschooled students and a lack of a rigorous college admissions examination system comparable to those in other countries, colleges use both the ACT or the SAT. ACT scores are used by admission officers to help them place local data (such as class rank, grades, and coursework) in a national perspective.

Most colleges don't have a preference for SAT or ACT exams and will accept them all. According to "Uni. However, some colleges will accept the ACT Writing section instead of the SAT Subject Tests.

Most colleges only consider ACT scores in determining admission. An analysis of ACT admissions scores showed that the 75th percentile composite score at public four-year colleges was 24.1 and 25.3, respectively.

ACT has also been used by some states and school districts to evaluate student learning and/or school performance. All high school students are required to take the ACT regardless of their college plans. In 2001, Colorado and Illinois became the first states to include the ACT in their mandatory testing programs. In subsequent years, other states followed their lead. 13 states will offer the ACT test to public school 11th-graders in 2018-2019. Six additional states will also fund the administration of the test as an option for districts.

Although the specific way in which ACT scores will determine admission to American higher education institutions is left up to the individual institutions, certain foreign countries have done ACT and SAT scores a legal criterion for deciding whether American high school diploma holders will be admitted to their public universities.


The required section of the ACT can be divided into four multiple-choice subject tests: English (maths, reading, science reasoning) and English (maths, reading, and writing). All scores are integers, and subject test scores can range from 1 to 36. Subscores are available for English, mathematics, reading, and other subjects. However, the subject score does not include the sum of all subscores. Students who take the optional writing test will receive a writing score of 2-12 (which is an increase from the 1-36 score range). The composite score does not reflect the writing score. The Combined English/Writing score was a 36-point combination of the 36-point English Test score plus the 12-point Writing subscore. Since September 2015, the ACT has introduced two new combined scores, ELA (an average score in English, Reading and Writing scores) as well as STEM (an average score in Math and Science scores). The September 2015 test brought about these changes in writing, ELA and STEM scores.

Each correct answer to a question is worth one raw point. There is no penalty for incorrect answers on multiple-choice sections of the test. Students can answer all questions and not see a drop in their scores. Parallel to several A.P. Tests, incorrect answers are not penalized. For a second chance at the ACT, students can raise their scores. 55% of those who retake it improve their scores. 22% get the same, and 23% see their scores drop.


The English test covers usage/mechanics and sentence structure. Five passages are underlined, and there are options to fix the underlined sections on the opposite side of each page. The test has 75 questions. Questions focus on grammar and syntax - questions such as commas and apostrophes as well as misplaced/dangling modifiers, colons and fragments.


A 60-minute, 60-question math test is the second part. It consists of approximately 14 questions covering pre-algebra and ten elementary algebra. There are nine intermediate algebra questions, nine elementary algebra questions, nine elementary algebra questions, nine plane geometry questions, nine coordinate geometry questions, and four questions about elementary trigonometry. The distribution of questions can vary from one test to the next. Higher numbers of questions will usually lead to more difficult questions. This section is only for calculators. Calculators are not permitted in this section. The TI-Nspire family allows both the CX and standard versions, while the CX CAS version is not. This section has five answers per question instead of the usual four.


The reading section is a 40-question, 35-minute test. It consists of four sections. One section contains a long prose passage, while the second section has two shorter passages. These passages represent the types and levels of text that are common in the college curriculum. The reading test measures skills in three main categories: key ideas, details, craft, structure, and integration. Students will be asked to deduce meaning from texts that refer to explicit statements or to reasoning to determine implicit meanings. Questions will require you to use your reasoning and referring skills to identify main ideas, locate and interpret important details, make comparisons, understand sequences of events, comprehend cause-effect relationships, draw generalizations, and analyze the voice and method of the author or narrator.


The science test takes 35 minutes and has 40 questions. Each passage is followed by five to seven questions. There are three formats for the passages: Data Representation (or Research Summary) and Conflicting Viewpoints (or Conflicting Viewpoints). The format was very predictable in the past (i.e. There were three Data Representation passages that had five questions and followed by three Research Summary passages, each with six questions. The Conflicting Viewpoints passage contained seven questions. However, the number of passages decreased from 7 to 6. This led to more variation in each type of passage. There is currently only one ConflictingViewpoints passage. These changes are quite recent, and only one passage on Conflicting Viewpoints has been released.


The optional writing section is usually administered at the end. This is an increase from the original 30-minute limit for the September 2015 test. Although there is no specific essay structure required, essays must respond to a prompt. The prompts focus on broad social issues and are different from those that were used for teenagers. Students must examine three perspectives and explain how they relate to each perspective. The composite score or English section score does not include the essay. It is given separately and is part of the ELA score. Each essay is assigned subscores by two trained readers. They are divided into four categories: Ideas, Analysis, Development, Support, Organization, Language Use, and Conventions. Scores of 0 are reserved for essays that are not on-topic, off-topic, or written with a no. 2 pencil or considered unreadable after multiple attempts to read. The subscores of both readers are added together to give final domain scores ranging from 2 to 12 (or zero) for each of the four categories. If the subscores of the two readers differ by more than one point, then a senior reader will make the final decision about the score. A process is used to combine the four domain scores in order to create a writing section score of 1 through 36. The domain scores are not combined to create the writing score.

While the writing section can be optional, many colleges will require an essay score in order to make an admissions decision. However, less than half of colleges have this requirement.