ACT Changes

The ACT has released a new practice test. Please email us for a copy. The changes aren't as significant as the SAT. You should get to know some of the updates:


On the redesigned science section, there will be 6-8 conflicting viewpoint questions (there is usually 7), 12-16 data representation questions (there is usually 15), and 18-22 research summary questions (there is usually 18).


Timing is still 35 minutes and there are still four passages (prose fiction, social science, humanities, and natural science - follows this order). There are 10 questions for a total of 40. The ACT introduced two short passages that address similar topics. The first questions are geared to the first passage.  The second set pairs to the second passage. The third will address both passages. 


The essay has changed dramatically. The essay section will now be 40 minutes instead of 30 minutes. It will still be optional and the essay score is not incorporated into the student’s overall composite score. The information in the prompt will be incorporated into the student's response. The scoring of the essay will also go through a change. 

The essay will have students evaluate various arguments, analyze evidence, and work to spark the student’s own ideas. They will be asked to review three opinions on an issue and develop an argument. Students analyze different points of view that are presented. Essays will now be scored in each of four categories:  organization, development and support, ideas and analysis, language use and conventions. Two different readers score the essay in the four categories on a 1-6 scale. Students will receive a score of 2-12 based upon these four categories. The score will be translated into a 1-36 scale. This changes from the old 2-12 scale.