Learn about the ACT

Learn the basics about the ACT–including what to expect on Test Day.

  • What’s a good ACT score?

    The ACT is scored on a 1-36 scale in each section and an overall composite score. Because there are so few possible scores that you can get on the ACT, answering just one more question correctly could be enough to turn an average score into a great score. Read More >

  • Should I take the ACT or SAT?

    The ACT and SAT are both standardized college admissions tests. Each test tests slightly different content in a different manner. Which one, or both, is right for you? Read More >

  • What is scaled scoring?

    The ACT and SAT use scaled scoring. This means yours score is based on percentiles. Percentiles are calculated in comparison to the other test taker’s scores, not just the number of questions you got right. Read More >

Studying for the ACT

The ACT is graded on a score from 1-36. You will receive an overall composite score as well as a score in each of the four sections–reading, english, math, and science. The ACT features an optional writing portion that is scored 2-12 for each of the four writing criteria.

  • ACT English Tips & Tricks

    The ACT starts with the English section. In this section, you will have 45 minutes to complete 75 questions. This may seem like a lot, but it is doable if you pace yourself to complete 25 questions every 15 minutes. Learn more >

  • ACT Science Tips & Tricks

    In the ACT Science section, you will have 35 minutes to complete 7 passages with multiple questions accompanying each passage. With difficult material and being located at the end of the test when you’re loosing steam, you need an arsenal of tips and tricks to get the best score you can. Learn More >

  • ACT Math Tips and Tricks

    On the ACT Math section you will have 60 minutes to answer 60 questions. The questions test you on: basic and intermediate algebra, geometry, coordinate geometry, linear equations, and basic trigonometry. While calculators are permitted on the math portion, although you may not and should not use them for every question. Learn more >

ACT Prep Courses

The amount of time you should dedicate to prepping for the ACT largely depends on what your score is and how many points you want to raise it. Kaplan prep courses give you 18+ hours of instruction and additional resources and study plans so you can practice, prepare, and build confidence for Test Day.

  • ACT Prep PLUS

    With Kaplan’s ACT Prep PLUS, you get all the added benefits of SAT prep and practice, three hours of private coaching, and the math foundations course. Learn more >

  • ACT Prep – Self-Paced Online

    Want test prep on your terms? Prefer working on your own from home? With Kaplan’s self-paced online courses, you can work at your own place, at your own pace—wherever you are, at whatever time suits you. Learn more >

  • ACT Prep Books

    Study proven strategies, boost your skills, practice your pacing, and become an ACT expert with multiple practice tests. Learn more >