Additional ACT Information

  • Additional Information to Help You Ace the ACT

    What is it? The ACT is a national college entrance exam that covers English, mathematics, reading, science comprehension, and an optional writing assessment.  It is used by many colleges as one consideration in reaching college admission decisions.  Almost all colleges in the nation that require an admissions exam will accept either the ACT or SAT.

    When is the ACT offered this year? 
    Students wishing to take the exam may do so at their own expense.  The exam is administered six times a year and registration deadlines come well in advance of the test date.  Registration information can be picked up in the guidance office or found online at: www.actstudent.org
                Test Date                                Registration Deadline
          September 14, 2019                  August 16 (August 30 - late fee)
          October 26, 2019*                    September 20 (October 4 - late fee)
          December 14, 2019                   November 8 (November 22 - late fee)
          February 8, 2020                       January 10 (January 17 - late fee)
          April 4, 2020*                           February 28 (March 13 - late fee)
          June 13, 2020                           May 8 (May 22 - late fee)
    July 18, 2020                             June 19 (June 26 - late fee)
       * Test is offered at FCHS

    How can I prepare for the test?  If you like learning on computers, check out ACT Online Prep.  Information is presented in an interactive multimedia format, including strong test preparation and customizable personal study plans based on the results of a student's test.  It also contains advice from ACT experts who created the test.  Students can practice at their own pace and can find information on specific coursework area in which they need to improve their skills.  More information can be found at: www.actstudent.org

    If you prefer to learn from books, you might look into The Real ACT Prep Guide.  This is one of many ACT prep books available, but it stands out in that it contains actual retired test questions.  The book includes three retired tests with answer explanations, instructions on scoring and interpreting scores, information about the content of the exam, procedures to follow when taking the test, types of questions asked, suggestions on how to approach the questions, and general test-taking strategies.  It can be found at most major bookstores or can be ordered from the ACT website.

    If you prefer to learn in a classroom setting, there are many test preparation providers in the area.  These courses typically involve simulated exams, strategies for successfully answering specific types of questions, drills on reading techniques and speed, and discussions on test taking strategies and reasoning skills.  Sylan Learning in Fairview Heights has courses which typically run for a month prior to each test date.  Call 277-1101 for more information.  SWIC also offers preparation classes throughout the year.  More information can be found by calling the Office of Community Education at 235-2700 ext. 5393.

    Can I review the test questions after receiving my scores?  On selected national test dates, students can order a copy of the test questions and their item responses.  This allows students to review the questions they answered correctly and incorrectly in order to identify strengths and weaknesses in the content area and to further target their test preparation activities.  This is only available for December, April, and June test dates.  Instructions for ordering can be found at: www.actstudent.org/scores/release.html

    How can I find out more details?  You can always stop by the guidance office to speak with one of the counselors.  More information about the exam, registration details, sample questions and answers, and much more can be found on the ACT website.  http://www.actstudent.org/