Entrance Exams

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What is ACT?

  • ACT abbreviated as American College of Testing is a standardized entrance exam that is used by most colleges and universities to make admissions decisions. It was first introduced in November 1959 by University of Iowa professor Everett Franklin Lindquist as a competitor to the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). It is currently administered by ACT, a nonprofit organization of the same name.
  • The purpose of the ACT test is to measure a high school student’s readiness for college, and provide colleges with one common data point that can be used to compare all applicants.
  • Many colleges require scores from the ACT or SAT tests as a part of the admissions process. Your ACT score is a key component of your college applications.
  • The ACT has seen a gradual increase in the number of test takers since its inception, and in 2011 the ACT surpassed the SAT for the first time in total test takers; that year, 1,666,017 students took the ACT and 1,664,479 students took the SAT.
  • All four-year colleges and universities in the U.S. accept the ACT, but different institutions place different emphases on standardized tests such as the ACT, compared to other factors including class rank, GPA, and extracurricular activities.
  • How important ACT scores are in the college application process varies from school to school. Overall, the higher you score on the ACT and/or SAT, the more options for attending and paying for college will be available to you.

ACT Exam Basics

  • The length of the examination is 2 hrs, 55 minutes (plus 40 minutes if taking ACT with writing).
  • The sections of ACT exam include English, Math, Science, Reading, Writing (Optional).
  • The fee for the ACT exam is as follows:
    • US without Writing: $50.50 USD
    • US with Writing: $67.00 USD
    • Non-US without Writing: $150.00 USD
    • Non-US with Writing: $166.50 USD
  • You need to score a maximum of 36 points in the test, whereas an average score of 21 points must be maintained.
  • The purpose of the examination is for the undergraduate admissions (mostly in the US and Canadian universities or colleges).
  • The examination is offered 7 times in a year for US and Canada, whereas it is offered 5 times in a year for other countries.
  • An approximate annual number of test takers is over 1.91 million high school graduates in the class of 2018.
  • No official prerequisite or eligibility criteria is required for the examination, however it has to be kept in mind that this examination is intended for high school students. Fluency in English assumed.
  • The following is fee distribution:
    • Without writing: US$46.00.
    • With writing: US$62.50.
  • Outside the US or Canada: US$47.50 in addition to above.
  • Fee waivers are available for 11th or 12th grade students who are US citizens or testing in the US or US territories, and have demonstrated financial need.

2018-19 ACT Test Dates & Registration Deadlines

Test Date Registration Deadline Late Registration Deadline Complete Score Release**
September 8, 2018 August 10, 2018 August 11-26, 2018 September 18 – November 2, 2018
October 27, 2018 September 28, 2018 September 29 – October 14, 2018 November 13, 2018 – January 1, 2019
December 8, 2018 November 2, 2018 November 3-19, 2018 December 18, 2018 – February 1, 2019
February 9, 2019* January 11, 2019 January 12-18, 2019 February 20 – April 5, 2019
April 13, 2019 March 8, 2019 March 9-25, 2019 April 23 – June 7, 2019
June 8, 2019 May 3, 2019 May 4-20, 2019 June 18 – August 2, 2019
July 13, 2019* June 14, 2019 June 15-24, 2019 July 23 – August 26, 2019

*The test is not available in New York on the February and July dates. The test is not available in California on the July date.

**ACT scores begin to be released.

Note: The dates provided in these charts are based on information released by the ACT and previous ACT test dates. In some cases, the information provided has not yet been confirmed by the ACT. Visit www.act.org for the most up-to-date published information.

When should you take the ACT?

  • Most high school students can take the ACT, SAT, or both during the spring of their junior year or fall of their senior year. It’s important to leave time to re-take the test if you need to raise your score before you apply to college.
  • The ACT exam is offered nationally every year in September, October, December, February*, April, June, and July*. View all upcoming ACT test dates.
  • *No test centers are scheduled in New York for the February or July test dates. No test centers are scheduled in California for the July test date.

Should you take the ACT or SAT?

  • Most colleges and universities will accept scores from either the SAT or ACT, and do not favor one test over the other. College-bound students are increasingly taking both the SAT and ACT. Changes made to the SAT in 2016 have made it easier than ever to prep for both tests concurrently—and earn competitive scores on both!
  • The best way to decide if taking the SAT, ACT, or both tests is right for you is to take a timed full-length practice test of each type.
  • Since the content and style of the SAT and ACT are very similar, factors like how you handle time pressure and what types of questions you find most challenging can help you determine which test is a better fit.

How do you register for ACT?

Registration deadlines fall approximately five weeks before each ACT test date. You can get registration materials from your school counselor, or you can register online on the official ACT website which is https://www.act.org/content/act/en/products-and-services/the-act/registration.html

How do we prepare you for ACT?

  • Proprietary Curriculum: Our experts in ACT have revised and updated our proprietary curriculum for the recent changes.
  • Exceptional ACT Tutors: We’re extremely selective for both intellect and teaching ability, and unlike many companies we provide comprehensive training.
  • Practice with Real ACTs: Practice and familiarity are essential to earning a stronger score, so we provide full-length Practice ACTs tests.
  • Score Increase Guarantee: The vast majority of our students meet their goal the first time, but if you don’t we put in an extra effort by tutoring you for extra hours.

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