THE ACT EXAM: TIPS AND STRATEGIES*

  • Pace yourself: you have approximately 48 to 60 seconds to do each question on the ACT. If you answered a question before the 48 second mark, you would have extra time for more difficult questions  
  • When doing practice test, ask yourself why you got an answer wrong
  • When practicing, try to see you weakness: content or time management?
  • Solve all the questions in the booklet first, then bubble the answers all at once: this saves a lot of time
  • Bubble every answer even when you have to guess
  • Practice, Practice, Practice: only in practicing can you know your weaknesses and strengths
  • English section:

Do not go by ear and choose whatever sounds wrong. Try to justify your answer
Carefully see what is underlined (i.e.: is the comma underlined?

  • Math section:

When checking your work, try doing the question in a different way

Plugging each answer in is sometimes the fastest way to answer a difficult question

Memorize common math facts (calculating a slope, arithmetic/geometric sequence, common right triangles…)

  • Reading section:

               Do not read every word of the passage
               A common strategy is to skim the passage first, then read the questions
               Try to predict the answer
               Read every word of the questions and answers. Even a single word can make an answer wrong

  • Science section:

              Answer passages with graphs and data first. The first few of the questions usually only require visuals on                   these graphs and data to answer
              Target reading based questions last
              Improve your mental math skills! Even though calculators are not permitted in this section, calculations are               sometimes required

  • Essay section:  

             If you don’t know the facts – make them up (in a realistic way, of course). Graders are not allowed to                          penalize you on wrong facts. As long as your statement support your thesis, you are fine.
             Your first paragraph and conclusion weighs more than the middle: make sure they are coherent, logical, and              stick to the thesis
             The ACT prefer essays of about 1.5 page or more

 

*: Compiled from blog.prepscholar.com and personal experience.

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