What is the ACT?
The ACT is another standardized test that is commonly required for admission to college. However, most schools do not require both the SAT and ACT in order to attend their institution. Often times, people who do not perform as strongly on the SAT will do better on the ACT. Check with the institutions you want to apply to on what tests are required to see if you should take the SAT or ACT. Both tests are accepted at colleges, so it may be based on your own personal preference.
How is the ACT different that the SAT?
The biggest difference between these tests is that the ACT measures what a student has learned in school and is referred to as an achievement test. On the other hand, the SAT is considered an aptitude test, which only focuses mainly on certain aspects on an individual's abilities. The ACT is comprised of five sections: English, Math, Reading, Science, and Writing. However, it is important to note that the writing section is optional. On the ACT, there is no penalty for a wrong answer and is only based off of the number of correct answers you have.
How do I register for the ACT?
To register for the ACT, go to the ACT registration page
and complete the online registration. Be sure that when you register you know if you will need the writing section of the test. If the colleges you are applying to do not require the writing section, than do not take the writing section of the test. It will help to save some money when paying for tests.
Can I use a fee waiver to register for the ACT?
If you are on free/reduced lunch, you are eligible to use a fee waiver to register for the ACT. Come see Mr. Cody if this applies to you and he will give you instructions on how to register using a fee waiver. Fee waivers cannot be handed out in order to register late for the ACT. Only those who qualify for the fee waiver will receive one.
How can I prepare for the ACT?
While prep options for the ACT are not quite as widespread as the SAT, there still are many good options available.
1) Check out the Test Preparation
page of the ACT website to see options that range from the ACT question of the day to practice tests and test taking tips.
2) Ask Mr. Cody to set you up to do ACT prep on Study Island.
offers free videos and question based practice available.
Which version of the ACT should I take?
This will depend on the colleges you are applying to. Not all colleges require the writing section, so be sure to check on the websites for each college or to call their Admissions Offices. If the writing section is required, make sure you select the right option during registration.
What does the ACT scoring system mean?
Unlike the SAT, the ACT is scored on a scale of 1 to 36 and is called the Composite Score
. The composite score is an average of all of the sections of the ACT combined, with 36 being the highest possible score. Each individual section of the ACT is also scaled from 1 to 36. If you are curious to see how your ACT score holds up against the SAT scores, take a look at this comparison page