Jump to content

Menu

ACT test on Saturday---what to expect?


Recommended Posts

My oldest is taking the ACT test (no essay this time) on Saturday. What can I expect in terms of the format of the exam?

 

From what I can see in The Real ACT Prep Guide, there are four tests: English, Math, Reading, and Science. I've heard that the test lasts approximately four hours.

 

1. Are there any breaks?

 

2. Are kids allowed to have a snack during the breaks?

 

3. Do kids bring their own pencils, or are those provided?

 

4. Do kids bring their own scratch paper, or are those provided?

 

5. Is a water bottle allowed during the test?

 

(*I have a feeling that for questions 3 & 4, these are provided; and I have a feeling it's a "no" for #5)

 

6. Bathroom breaks allowed?

 

7. We have a TI-83 Plus Silver Edition Calculator---I think that's on the approved calculator list, but I need to double-check.

 

8. Any last-minute strategies for difficult sections of the test, i.e., the math portion (which is my daughter's weakest area)? Should she carefully work through as many problems as she can within the 60-minute time frame, or should she try to complete all 60 problems, even if she guesses?

 

Any and all help appreciated!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There is a short break about halfway, and students may eat/drink/use the restroom during the break. No food or drink may be consumed in the testing room. Students need their own pencils and calculator (the TI-83 is fine), but scratch paper is provided. There is no penalty for an incorrect answer, so typically it is best to make smart guesses on the questions that time doesn't allow for a full answer or the student doesn't remember how to work.

 

My younger dd is testing Saturday as well. :c)

 

Lori

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When my son took the SAT last month what really bothered and distracted him was noises other kids made during the test....shifting ,stretching, asking questions, dropping calculators. He said he couldn't focus. He maybe one that's noise-sensitive....something I never anticipated. He did all his practice tests in the quiet of his room. Someone suggested for his next test (ACT) to bring earplugs. Your dc may not have this problem, but you might want to consider this issue.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When my son took the SAT last month what really bothered and distracted him was noises other kids made during the test....shifting ,stretching, asking questions, dropping calculators. He said he couldn't focus. He maybe one that's noise-sensitive....something I never anticipated. He did all his practice tests in the quiet of his room. Someone suggested for his next test (ACT) to bring earplugs. Your dc may not have this problem, but you might want to consider this issue.

 

 

One book my dd is using, Rocket Review has a CD which, among other features, simulates the testing environment including peripheral noise. She hasn't taken any practice tests yet, but we're thinking this is a practical tool for when the time comes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I had a girlfriend whose ds took it for the first time this year. Whatever time was on their sheet was the time the test started, NOT the time they were to arrive. They were supposed to have been there 30 minutes earlier! I don't know if she just missed this or if it was unclear. At any rate, he didn't have time to use the bathroom, get settled, etc., so the "rushing" kind of threw him off.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My son took the ACT (which we use as a state accountability test) in April of '07 and '08 (9th and 10th grades). On the first go around, he just did the multiple choice portion. Last April, he included the writing test.

 

Frankly, he was spent by the time the essay rolled around. These tests take stamina!

 

All prayers said for my son were most appreciated. We'll be thinking about your daughter, Michelle, on Saturday.

 

Jane

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes, I know these tests are grueling--having just been through one myself in March!

 

All prayers appreciated, believe me! I've had my oldest do a test each day, and she has improved on the math portion a little bit.

 

One more thing I'm wondering is---are the tests in the practice book more difficult than the actual ACT? I found that to be the case when I took the GRE. I took several practice tests, but when I took the real test I ended up with a better score than I did on any of the practice tests. I think that was good; I didn't go into the test being over-confident. I'm just wondering if the ACT practice tests are the same way.

 

Either way, both she and I will be glad when it's over and done with! I plan to give her plenty of R&R after that!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just took the ACT in April and here's my opinion:

The ACT tests in the Real ACT practice guide were real past ACT tests and on about the same difficulty level as the test I took. Other practice books' ACT tests (McGraw Hill, For Dummies, etc.) that were made up by the authors were a lot easier than the real deal.

My advice for the Math section, which I did well on, is go through and work out the problems that come easiest to you, and then when you have a couple minutes to go, fill in the rest (no penalty for wrong answers!). Also, one thing that really helped me was having my own stopwatch to keep up with the time. I hope your daughter does well!

~Christy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...