First: Look around your local universities and high schools
Many high schools and local universities offer free test prep classes, including classes for the ACT. These classes are often taught by university students who need teaching experience. Check out bulletin boards near your high school and on school web pages to find these ACT prep classes. These classes do tend to fill up quickly, so make sure you stay on the lookout for openings.
Second: Consider online classes
If you do not live near a university and your high school does not offer free ACT prep classes, internet classes are a great option for you. There are free ACT prep classes online that can help improve your score. These classes are often in module format and focus on one subject at a time. While these classes are valuable, they do lack a human instructor which may make it difficult to answer questions you have.
Third: Create your own class
Another great way to get free ACT prep classes is to create your own classes. Talk to people you know who are knowledgeable and have done well on the ACT. These people are sometimes willing to meet with you and to help you with your ACT prep for free.
How to Change Your School Code After Registration
First: Pay attention to deadlines
One very important thing when making these kinds of changes is to make them by the deadlines given by each facility. Some facilities need their changes in by noon on Thursday central time, while others need them by the Saturday before the testing date. No matter the reason for changing your school codes, the deadlines are important, and you need to know what each of them are.
Second: Log in to your student account
The way you get this accomplished is to log in to your student account and select “Make changes to your registration” (or something similar) and request the change. If you experience website problems, just call the registration desk to request your changes. If you miss the cutoff point to make safe changes, call the registration desk and request your change. Check with your testing center to see if there are any fees for changing codes. Some charge for this service, while others do not. Some facilities allow these types of changes after testing dates, and others have specific instructions about changing codes printed on their testing admission tickets. The best thing to do is check with the registration center to find out all of the details so that you do not waste your money or your time.
How to Enroll in an ACT Prep Course
First: Assemble a list of ACT prep courses
Your first step is to get a list of ACT prep courses that you are capable of affording and attending. The basic crux of this step is to get a “big list” you can then whittle down in order to make enrolling easy, focused and effective. Include prep courses that are in your budget and in your commuting location. Sometimes online prep courses are available, so if that interests you, put it in your list.
Second: Decide the most important factors
Next, you must create a list of factors that narrow the list down to a short list of potential candidates. What is more important, the effectiveness of the program or affordability? Jot down all the possibilities. A few ideas are affordability, testimonials, location, pedigree and any guarantees they offer.
Third: Use the factors
After deciding on your priorities, use them in order to narrow the list down into a short list of candidates. By now, you have gone from a large list to a small, focused list of candidates that meet your needs and criteria.
Fourth: Make the choice
The last step is easy. Decide on which prep course you want to enroll in, and then get started! You cannot go wrong after coming up with several different courses that meet your needs.
How to Find Free ACT Prep Courses
First: Consult a guidance counselor or school advisor
High school students should get advice from their high school guidance counselors. It is the counselors’ professional responsibility to help students prepare for their futures after high school, so they can provide help with many topics, including test prep. Any student looking to plan an effective ACT test prep course should first visit their school’s administration office and discuss the matter with a guidance counselor. They often have recommendations for study groups or volunteer activities that can prove very useful in this regard.
Second: Visit the school library
The school library often has many resources available, including up-to-date lists of special test prep courses and study dates. Librarians can also help students gain access to valuable resources, including free study materials on ACT test prep.
Third: Conduct independent research
Finally, a student must take action on his or her own by investigating the matter independently. Internet searches can provide a plethora of online resources, such as sample tests, study guides, tips on strategy, testimonials and general advice on how to approach the testing procedure. This is well worth the investment in time and effort and can drastically improve a student’s outlook on the ACT test.
How to Find Your High School’s Code for ACT Registration
In order to register for the ACT, you must first find your high school’s code. There are numerous ways to find this code, including through your school counselor. The following guide demonstrates how to find your high school’s code using the ACT website, one of the easiest ways to find the code you seek.
First: Input the ACT website’s address into your browser
Enter the address www.actstudent.org into your web browser’s address bar, and press enter. Alternatively, you can use a search engine to get to the site. If you chose to use the search engine method, click on the first result.
Located along the left side of the site, the link for “High School Codes” is located at the bottom of the “ACT Codes” box. Click on the link to load the search parameters.
Third: Enter your country and state
Find your country in the first drop down menu. The United States and Canada are located on the top of the list. If you live in the United States, you only need to select your state. If you live in Canada, you must enter your territory as well as your province.
Fourth: Enter your city or high school
Type in your city and/or high school. You do not have to enter both, but if you live in a large city with multiple high schools, entering your school’s name makes your search easier.
Fifth: Press search.
At this point, all of the possible results then populate. Choose your school from the list. The registration number lies on the right side of the list.
How to Make Changes to Your Registration After Submission
Changing your ACT registration after an original submission requires acting before the close of registration for the testing date. It is possible to change the testing date and the testing center. There are also options for switching between the ACT Plus Writing and the basic ACT. Fees are charged for the changes, and conditions sometimes apply.
First: Contact ACT
To make changes in ACT registration, it is important to contact ACT as soon as possible. Using your student web account is one option, and calling ACT at 1-319-337-1270 is the alternative. Having all pertinent information on hand, including current registration details, facilitates the process. A credit card is essential in order to pay the fees.
Second: Change your testing date
It is possible to change the testing date, and the fee for that is $21, if you make the change prior to the end of the registration period. After that, changes remain possible, but the fee nearly doubles.
Third: Change your testing location
Getting a new testing location on the same testing date for which you are already scheduled is also an option, if the new site still has room. The fee for changing the testing location is $21, and there are no options for doing this after registration ends.
Fourth: Switch tests
Switching between the ACT Plus Writing and the basic ACT is possible on the actual day of testing. To upgrade to the Plus Writing, fees start at $15.50 and are sometimes higher, depending upon what the testing location requires to administer the test. Not every testing location is prepared for the writing segment, and only those with the capability are able to grant requests for the ACT Plus Writing.
How to Register for the ACT
If you plan on going to college, then you are probably going to need to take the ACT test. Most major colleges now require you to take this test and are only going to accept your application if you get a good score. The acceptance process takes time, making it important for you to register for this test as soon as you can. There are a couple ways you can register.
First: Online registration
Registering online is the quickest method, letting you know immediately if the test center you prefer has room for you to take the test. If so, you can print out the admission ticket and register for the test. If you are going to take the test at a national test center, then you need to sign up using your student Web account. If you want extended time for the test, sign up online by completing the application request and sending them the needed documents.
Second: Register by mail
If you do not want to register online, then you can also register by mail. However, this method is the slower of the two. Therefore, it is more convenient to register online. You only need to register by mail if you are under the age of 13 or you cannot pay fees with a credit card. If you plan on registering by mail, then you must put in the serial number in the part of the registration folder marked “Block W.” After you have filled out the form, return this signed voucher along with the registration folder.
How to Request an ACT Fee Waiver and Who Qualifies for One
If you are thinking about requesting a fee waiver for an ACT test, read all the rules and regulations regarding the waiver first to avoid paying for something that might initially cost you nothing. A good rule of thumb is to check the frequently asked questions area of the ACT website to avoid any misunderstandings or any miscommunication that might arise.
First: Qualifying for a fee waiver
If your family is in need of financial assistance, you may qualify for a fee waiver. In order to qualify for an ACT fee waiver, you must attend the 11th or 12th grade, maintain United States citizen or take the test in the United States or its territories and meet one or more of the economic needs listed on the form. If you meet all of the above requirements, you are allowed a total of two separate fee waivers. The first waiver is used automatically once you register, whether or not you test on that date. This is why you must choose your facility and your dates very carefully.
Second: Requesting a fee waiver
Contact your counselor at your high school institution and ask for an ACT fee waiver form. Once you receive this form, follow the registration directions for students. Each year, schools receive all the requirements for a fee waiver and request instructions, so they are familiar with the process. If you have any special needs, then let the high school counselor know in order to carry out the preparations. The waiver does not cover late registration fees, testing date or testing center changes, standby fees or any other fees, only the basic registration fee and your four college choices.
How to Time Yourself When Using ACT Practice Questions
Cramming information or trying to learn new skills in advance of taking the ACT is not useful. This is because the goal of taking the ACT is to measure what you already know, and mastering all the skills tested is not feasible. Instead, your time is better spent practicing basic test taking skills and improving your time on taking practice tests to make sure that enough time is available to appropriately address every question on the test.
First: Learn how each section is timed
Make sure you understand how the test is timed and how many questions you are expected to answer. Each section of the test is timed separately. The English section is 45 minutes long and contains 75 questions, while the math section is 60 minutes long and contains 60 questions, the reading section is 35 minutes long and contains 40 questions and the science section is 35 minutes long and contains 40 questions.
Second: Determine how long to spend on each question
Plan for how to use the time you are given to ensure you can answer each question on the test. Remember, this in an average. Some questions take less time, allowing you to spend slightly more time on more complex questions. In the math section, you have one minute to complete each question on the test. On sections with passages of data that you must read and analyze, allow more time for the reading tasks than the questions asked. In the English section, plan to spend 80 seconds on each reading passage and spend 30 seconds on each question. On the reading section, plan to spend up to four minutes reading each passage and 30 seconds answering each question. Finally, on the science section, plan to spend two minutes on each passage and 20 seconds on each question.
Third: Figure the time for your practice test
Use these time frames to determine how long to give yourself to complete the practice test. If you are taking a practice test for the math section with 20 questions, allow yourself 20 minutes to complete it. If you are taking a practice reading test with two reading sections and 15 questions, allow yourself 15 minutes to complete the practice test.
How to Use ACT Practice Test Questions to Help You Prepare for the ACT
The ACT is a college admissions standardized test that many high school seniors take prior to applying for a university. It tests reading, mathematics, science, English and writing skills. Taking an ACT practice test can help students prepare for the actual ACT by giving them an idea of their time management skills, the information covered on the exam and their possible score.
First: Learn about time management
The ACT is a timed exam for every section, which makes it important for students to understand how quickly they can get through the exam. Using ACT practice test questions can help students see which sections take them longer, so that they can study those materials more in hopes of shaving off some time. Ideally, a student wants to get through a section with enough time to spare so they may look back at their answers and double check everything.
Second: Learn the material
ACT practice test questions are also great in preparing students for the actual material on the ACT. Many students are used to reading and mathematics exams, but not used to science questions on standardized exams. By looking at the ACT practice test questions and answering them, students increase their chances of learning the material and also seeing what material they should study further. If they struggle with the practice questions on fractions, then they should spend more time looking at fractions and practicing prior to the exam, and so forth.
Third: Learn about scoring
ACT practice questions are also a good way for students to learn about scoring. Students can prepare for the ACT by practicing the exam and calculating their results. This can give them a rough idea of their possible score, which can give them an idea of what they need to improve on, if anything.
FAQs About How ACT Prep Courses Are Formatted
Getting ready for the ACT is often nerve-racking, but taking an ACT prep course can ease a lot of that anxiety. Here are several frequently asked questions about how ACT prep classes work so you can feel better about signing up.
- Q: Is an ACT prep class better than an ACT prep book?
- A: Prep classes are generally superior to books due to the ability of the teacher to identify your individual strengths and weaknesses. The teacher can focus your prep work on the areas where you need the most help.
- Q: How are ACT prep classes designed?
- A: There is a common element to all ACT prep courses, and that is an evaluation to determine where you are now. The teacher prepares a test designed to ferret out your weaknesses so he or she can design a program of study that address your individual weaknesses. The prep class is then taught with a higher focus on your weaknesses and a smaller focus on your strengths.
- Q: What is the expected end result of an ACT prep course?
- A: An ACT prep class should improve your score. Some schools guarantee a certain percentage gain, but others do not. By the end of the class, it is reasonable to expect your score to improve by at least 10 percent, unless you have large gaps in your education. For instance, if you know you are several years behind your peers in math, it is not reasonable to achieve a 10 percent increase in score after one ACT class.
- Q: What is the best way to prepare for an ACT prep course?
- A: Ask the ACT prep school for an initial evaluation, and go over the results with a representative of the school. If your scores are well below normal in any one area, spend time on that one area prior to signing up for the ACT prep class. Take another class, perhaps at a school that specializes in tutoring, to gain more skills in those areas where you are especially weak.
FAQs About Registering for the ACT
Taking the ACT is an important part of a student’s life, but registering for the test may seem like a confusing process. Read on for some answers to frequently asked questions about navigating this potentially difficult process to make it just a little easier.
- Q: What is the easiest way to register for the test?
- A: By far, the easiest way to register for the ACT is to do online registration. The ACT allows you to go online, set up an account and register instantly to take the test at the test center of your choice. If that location has already filled up, the site tells you immediately, allowing you to choose another location. The regular ACT costs $34; if you choose to do the essay component, the total cost is $49.50. Late registration entails a further $21 fee. You can also register by mail, though this method takes longer.
- Q: What if you miss the late registration deadline?
- A: The ACT offers standby testing for an extra $42 fee, which brings the total cost for a standby test to $76 ($91.50 with writing). Students who register for a standby slot are not guaranteed a slot and are served on a first-come-first-serve basis. If you take the test on standby, you may not cancel your scores, and you may have to wait longer for your results to come out.
- Q: How do you register for the ACT if you live in another country?
- A: To register to take the ACT in another country, you must go to the website. Once there, follow the prompts to register to take the test at an approved testing center in your country. If there are none in your country, you may sign up for arranged testing.
- Q: What is arranged testing?
- A: Arranged testing is for people who are disabled, too far away from a testing center or religiously unable to take a test on Saturdays. If you fit any of these categories, you can take the test at your school or house, though you must find someone to supervise the test for you.