ACT stands for American College Testing is a standardised test used for college admissions in the United States. It is currently administered by ACT, a nonprofit organisation of the same name. The ACT covers four academic skill areas: English, mathematics, reading and science reasoning. The ACT test has been accepted by all four-year colleges and universities in the United States as well as more than 225 universities outside of the U.S. ACT was first introduced in November 1959 by University of Iowa by professor Everett Franklin Lindquist as a competitor to the ScholasticAptitude Test(SAT). The ACT has seen a gradual increase in the number of test-takers since its inception, and in 2012 the ACT surpassed the SAT for the first time in total test-takers.
ACT assessment measures high school students general educational development and their capability to complete college-level work with the multiple choice tests covering four skill areas: English, mathematics,reading and science. The optional writing tests measures skill in planning and writing a short essay. ACT states that its scores provide an indicator of “college readiness”. And that scores in each of the subsets correspond to skills in entry-level college courses in English, Algebra, Social Science, Humanities and biology. According to a research study conducted by ACT in 2003, there was a relationship between students act composite score and the probability of him/her earning a college degree. ACT incorporates the objectives of instruction from middle and high schools throughout the United States; reviews approved textbooks for subjects taught in grades 7-12 and surveys educators on which knowledge skills are relevant to success in postsecondary education. ACT publishes a technical manual that summarises studies conducted on its validity in predicting freshman GPA, equating different high school GPAs, and measuring educational achievement. Colleges use ACT and SAT because there are substantial differences in funding, curricula, grading and difficulty among US secondary schools due to American federalism, local control the prevalence of private, distance, homeschooled students and lack os a rigorous college entrance examination system similar to those used in some other countries.
The ACT is offered seven times a year in the United States and its territories, Puerto Rico and Canada. The ACT is designed, administered and scored so that there is no advantage to testing on one particular date. Students with verifiable disabilities, including physical and learning disabilities, are eligible to take the test with accommodations. The standard time increase for students requiring additional time due to disabilities is 50%. Originally, the score sheet eas labelled that additional time was granted due to a learning disability; however, this was ultimately dropped because it was deemed illegal under Americans with Disabilities Act and could be perceived as an Unfair Designator of Disability.
Need for ACT practice tests:
The need for ACT practise tests is to help students do their best on their carrier path to gain admission to colleges and universities. The ACT is committed to representing the diversity of society in all its aspects, including race, ethnicity, and gender. Questions, passages and writing prompts are chosen to reflect a range of cultures and are written not to disadvantage any particular group of examinees. ACT employs extensive reviews and statistical procedures to ensure fairness and test materials. ACT conducts research and periodically updates tests to provide test content that reflects classroom instructions and continues to be a relevant predictor of college and career readiness. There may be subtle differences between the ACT practice tests in the bookle, and the test students take on the test day. ACTs also consist of practice writing tests, a sample answer document, answer keys and self-scoring instructions.
ACT endorses the Code of fair testing Practices in Education and the Code of Professional Responsibilities in Educational Measurements, which guide the conduct of those that are involved in educational testing. The ACT is committed to ensuring that each of its testing programs upholds the guidelines in each code.
Finding Official ACT Tests:
The official ACTs can be found online in the official ACT website or any other online internet sources. Registering for ACT is as easy as finding the tests itself. Registration deadlines fall approximately five weeks before each ACT date. Before opting for official tests, the most important step is to take a full-length diagnostic exam. Takin full-length practice tests are also important for building stamina that will help a student avoid silly mistakes on the day of the exam. More preparatory materials can be found in The CollegeVine Guides to the ACT. Every year ACT publishes a full-length practice test designed to help students prepare for test day. The five unique official practice tests currently in circulation that can be found through online sources are:
- Official ACT Practice Test, 2018-19
- Official ACT Practice Test, 2015-16
- Official ACT Practice Test, 2014-15
- Official ACT Practice Test, 2011-12
- Official ACT Practice Test, 2008-9
- Official ACT Practice Test, 2005-6
Finding (and How to use) Unofficial ACTs:
Unofficial ACTs are the scores that are provided by a student or the high school to the college, rather than scores sent directly to the college by ACT. The unofficial ACT’s have the disadvantage of being slightly less reliable (as it could have been tampered by the student or the school), but also has a great advantage of being free. Unofficial ACTs can be found online just like the Official ACTs, and one of the most stressfulparts of taking any standardised test is sitting through potentially uncomfortable testing conditions. Staying focused and alert for several hours with few breaks and have to jump from section to section without breaking the stride. Taking unofficial ACT practise tests under realistic testing conditions helps prepare a student for the test day. This means sitting through an entire test in one go while carefully timing how long to spend on each section of the test. This component of ACT prep is about building knowledge of all the content that’s tested on the exam. While working on specific subjects prep, there is a nee for od materials that test (and teach) understanding of subject-specific content. Unofficial or supplementary materials can prepare students well when it comes to brushing up on content, even if they are not strict, official ACT format.
Free Online Practice ACTs From Test Prep Companies:
There are countless options for ACT prep- from books to online courses to in-person tutors. The options can be overwhelming. Online prep is probably a good choice for if one is working or studying independently. There might be a need to take the initiative on working through the course or logging into an online tutoring session. The following are the online ACT prep options that were ranked based on the course quality, price, course duration and other extras such as personalisation, number of practice tests, accessibility and point increase guarantee, these are;
- ACT- ACT Online prep (Lowa City, Lowa)
- Peterson’s- ACT Prep Online Course (Lincoln, Nebraska)
- Prepfactory-ACT (Washington, D.C.)
- Higher Scores Test Prep- ACT prep(Carlsbad, Califonia)
- Green Test Prep (New York)
- The Princeton Review- ACT Test Prep (Framingham, Massachusetts)
- Kaplan- ACT Prep Courses (Ft. Lauderdale, Florida)
- Testive-ACT (Boston, Massachusetts)
- PrepScholar- ACT prep Course (Cambridge, Massachusetts)
- ClearPath Advantage- ACT course (Barlett, Illinois)
Practice Strategy and Review Content With Supplementary Materials:
Practice test strategies and some awareness of the traps will help approach the test with greater confidence for a higher score. Some of the practice strategy and review content with supplementary materials are as follows;
- Practice: Practice is the highest and most unbeatable, supreme-est strategy for the ACT.
- Making solid Time management before the test: Make (and practice) the time management plan before the test (then stick to the planned time during the time of the actual test)
- Eliminating wrong answers: Cross out the incorrect answers in the test booklet, then select the answer from those that remain.
Making a Plan, How to Study for the ACT:
Having an ACT study plan allows a student to balance the prep time so that the person preparing for the ACT is spending enough time on the topics that need to be studied. ACT plans are also highly adaptable. Below mentioned are five preliminary steps that we must take to find the best ACT study plan:
STEP 1: Set a Goal Score; This is to score most likely to get admission to all the schools applied so that there are options available.
STEP 2: Find the Baseline Score; A baseline score is essentially the starting point in ACT prep, which will help with the official tests and the best resources.
STEP 3: Calculate the time and how many hours should be dedicated to studying: Using the baseline and goal scores to figure out roughly how many hours are needed to prep for the ACT.
STEP 4: Pick a Test Date: While picking a test date, there need three factors to be considered, and these are, How much time one needs to prepare for the ACT? How busy will be ones schedule? And what is the student's college application deadlines? By these factors, a student can prepare for the ACT.
STEP 5: Gather ACT study Materials; if one begins to prep for ACT, spending time gathering high-quality study materials is a vital step. The best resources a student can use are the official once.