What is an ACT Test

ACT - Its Purpose and Format

ACT, often abbreviated for the American College Testing is a standardized test administered in order to facilitate college admissions for various colleges in the USA. Students in grades sixth to ninth, sophomores, students of junior or senior high school grades can take the ACT. Before knowing about what is an ACT test and what it consists, you should know the primary purpose of its administration.

The Purpose of ACT Administration

The main purpose of ACT is to provide a standardized testing platform so that all the universities admit students based upon the scores of the test. Although not every single university accepts ACT scores, a considerable number of institutes in USA accept scores of ACT. Now, it is quite understandable to have the question, what is an ACT test and how is it different from the SAT. ACT and SAT are equivalent tests and are administered in order to be considered as a basic test for students who wish to pursue higher education after their high school graduation. Some institutes accept the ACT scores and others accept SAT scores. It purely depends upon the institute's choice to shortlist candidates for admissions. Therefore, the answer to your question, what is an ACT test is simple - it is a test to be taken in order to secure admission in an undergraduate program in a university that accepts ACT scores.

What is an ACT Test?

Knowing about what is an ACT test in detail is pretty much important before you plan your career. It is advised that you should know about what is an ACT test by the time you complete your sophomore year in high school. The ACT tests your abilities through four different sections. Moreover, there is an additional Writing test which is optional. The test is designed to test your abilities through the questions which are based upon the concepts of high school academic studies. Further, the universities that accept ACT scores do not merely take your ACT scores into consideration. Your GPA score will also be taken into account during the admission review process. By now, you should be clear about preparing well for the ACT test and at the same time maintain your academic studies well. The ACT is administered, produced and controlled by the ACT, Inc located in the USA. This non-profit organization runs an official website to help students register and know everything about what is an ACT test in detail. Refer to this link: http://www.actstudent.org/index.html for detailed information.

Sections and Question Types

We shall now look into detailed information of what is an ACT test pertaining to the sections and the question types that appear in the test. Apart from the optional Writing test, the four sections in the ACT test are the English, Mathematics, Reading and the Science sections. All the questions in these four sections are multiple-choice questions.

  • The English section of the ACT consists of 75 questions to be answered within a total time of 45 minutes. It broadly tests your abilities in the areas of language usage and rhetorical skills. Questions related to punctuation, grammar usage, structuring of sentences, organization and style of usage are broadly covered in this section.
  • The Mathematics section consists of 60 questions to be answered within a time of 60 minutes.
  • The Reading section consists of 40 questions to be answered within a time of 35 minutes. The questions are asked based upon the passages and require you to answer after reading the given passages. They test your reading comprehension abilities.
  • The Science section lasts for 35 minutes and has 40 questions. Here, your ability to interpret, analyze, evaluate, reason and solve is tested in the areas of natural science concepts.
  • The optional Writing test requires you to present an essay based upon a prompt and you will have 30 minutes to complete the essay.

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