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ACT Exam Overview

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by

Michael Drescher

on 11 March 2014

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Transcript of ACT Exam Overview

English Section
75 multiple-choice questions
45 minutes long
5 prose passages, each with questions
Questions are side-by-side with their corresponding passages
Questions have only 4 possible answers (not 5)
Two sections:
1. Usage/Mechanics: grammar (40 questions)
2. Rhetorical skills: style/organization (35 questions)
Math Section
60 multiple-choice questions
60 minutes
Five possible answers per problem
Sub-Sections:
1. Pre-Algebra/Elementary Algebra: 24 questions
2. Intermediate Algebra/Coordinate Geometry: 18 questions
3. Plane Geometry/Trigonometry: 18 questions
Reading Section
40 multiple-choice questions
35 minutes
Four sections, each with passages of varying lengths
Sub-Sections:
1. Social Studies/Natural Science (20 questions)
2. Arts/Literature (20 questions)
ACT Exam Overview
Science Section
35 minutes long
40 questions
Covers: Biology, Chemistry, Earth/Space Sciences, and Physics
Skills:
1. Data representation (graphs, tables)
2. Make generalizations, conclusions, predictions
3. Research summaries
4. Conflicting viewpoints
What is it?
The SAT is a college entrance exam created and administered by American College Testing
Measures Reading, English, Math, and Science skills
Predicts ability to be successful in college
Along with GPA and personal statements, it's one of the main things that colleges are looking for in applicants
Equivalent to the SAT - colleges accept both equally
1,666,017 students took the test in 2011 - slightly more than the SAT
SAT vs. ACT
The ACT score is based only on the total number of correct answers - no penalties for guessing
The ACT only has 4 sections and you do them one section at a time
ACT question are often easier to understand
The SAT focuses more on vocabulary
The ACT has a Science section
The ACT tests more advanced math concepts
With the ACT, you only get one total, composite score - colleges won't know how you scored on each subject
Exam Format
215 multiple-choice questions
Takes 3 hours and 30 minutes to complete (plus break)
Four subjects: English, Science, Reading, and Math
Multiple Choice answers are staggered:
1. A, B, C, D, E
2. F, G, H, I, K
3. A, B, C, D, E
How is it scored?
Composite score: average of all 4 tests
Ranked from 1 (low) to 36 (high)
This is the only score the college sees
Seven sub-scores for each subject (from 1 - 18)
No direct relationship between your sub-scores and your total, composite score
You should try to get a 20
Full transcript