SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

ACT Test Information Release: Should You Order It?

feature_TIR.jpgIf you’re hoping to find out more information about your ACT scores or use your test as a study aid, you should think about ordering Test Information Release. I’ll go through what’s included in TIR, why you should strongly consider ordering it, and how to order it for your test.


What Is Test Information Release?

Test Information Release is essentially an all-access guide to your ACT scores. You can order it during registration or up to three months after you take the test, and it costs $20.

Here’s what you get for your money:

  • A copy of the multiple choice test questions
  • A list of your answers 
  • The answer key
  • If you took the writing portion, you also get a copy of the essay prompt and essay scoring guidelines along with your essay scores

You will also receive information about ordering a photocopy of your answer sheet (and essay, if you took the ACT with Writing) for an additional fee.

Test Information Release is only offered for the December, April and June ACT test dates at national test centers. Unfortunately, on other dates there is no comparable service offered by the ACT, so if you want to review your scores in-depth you should stick to those test dates.


Reasons to Order Test Information Release

There are several reasons you might order TIR as a supplement to your regular score report, including its usefulness for future studying and its clarification of the mistakes you made on the test.


Reason #1: It’s a Great Studying Tool!

If you’re planning on taking the ACT more than once, Test Information Release is an excellent resource. It allows you to review the test questions and analyze your mistakes to avoid repeating them next time you take the test. Focusing on the mistakes you made in a real test environment will increase the efficiency of your prep time.

The ACT says on the order form for TIR that “you should not expect to receive [your TIR materials] before the registration deadline or in time to study for the next test date.” But if you’re not planning on taking the test on the very next date (or if you are but you think you might take it a third time later), TIR can be super useful as a study guide.


Reason #2: You Got a Score You Didn’t Expect and Want to Review Your Answers in More Detail

If you’re stumped by your ACT score, ordering Test Information Release can help you make sense of what happened. With full access to the questions, it’s more likely that you will remember why you made certain mistakes.

If you believe an error was made in the scoring process and are considering going a step further and ordering Hand Scoring for the ACT, you should order TIR first. Hand Scoring means that a real human from the ACT will review your answers to see whether there was a mistake in the scantron scoring process. This is relatively expensive ($45 for multiple choice or essay, $90 for both), so you should make sure you have a good reason to do it.

Test Information Release will either confirm or deny your suspicions about your score based on whether you remember answering questions the way it says you did on your score report.


With TIR, you get to be your own ACT detective! Don't get too excited. 


How to Order Test Information Release

As mentioned above, if you already know you want to order Test Information Release before you sign up for the ACT, you can order it along with your original registration (check the TIR box during online registration). You should receive your materials four weeks after your scores are released.

If you order TIR after the test, your order has to be postmarked within three months of the test date. You must send the form and check via snail mail. Here is a link to the form.

Mail the form, along with a check for $20 made out to ACT, to this address:

ACT Test Information Release
PO Box 4008
Iowa City, IA 52243-4008

You should expect to receive your materials three to five weeks after you send in the order form. Remember, you can only order TIR if you test on official dates in December, April, or June at a national ACT test center


What's Next?

Still not sure whether you should retake the ACT? Here's a quick guide to help you decide.

Or are you just trying to find the right test date for your situation? Learn more about when you should take the ACT.

Use this guide to figure out your target ACT score so you have a goal in mind for the next time you take the test! If you're looking for tips on specific sections, take a look at these articles on how to earn the best scores on each section of the test.



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Samantha Lindsay
About the Author

Samantha is a blog content writer for PrepScholar. Her goal is to help students adopt a less stressful view of standardized testing and other academic challenges through her articles. Samantha is also passionate about art and graduated with honors from Dartmouth College as a Studio Art major in 2014. In high school, she earned a 2400 on the SAT, 5's on all seven of her AP tests, and was named a National Merit Scholar.

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