SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

ACT Test Dates: Full Guide to Choosing (2019, 2020)

Posted by Dr. Fred Zhang | Aug 18, 2019 2:00:00 PM

ACT General Info

Looking for info on the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 ACT test dates? Knowing the most accurate ACT test dates is crucial for a solid test-taking plan. Though you might be tempted to go ahead and register for the next possible test date, what you should really be doing is finding a date that works well for you and your schedule.

In this guide, we offer an overview of upcoming ACT test dates, registration deadlines, and score release dates. We also give you tips on how to choose an ACT test date and go over which test dates work best for juniors, seniors, and more.

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Colleges With Guaranteed Admission for SAT/ACT Scores

Posted by Samantha Lindsay | Aug 18, 2019 12:00:00 PM

ACT General Info, SAT General Info, College Admissions

Some colleges will guarantee admission to applicants who meet certain requirements for test scores and GPA. These schools are good choices for students who are looking for sure bets in the college application process.

In this guide, I've compiled every single school that offers guaranteed admission based on SAT/ACT scores, along with other requirements like residency and GPA. If you're lucky, you'll fit the criteria at one or more of these colleges and be 100% certain of your acceptance if you choose to apply.

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Colleges That Superscore ACT: Complete List

Posted by Rebecca Safier | Aug 4, 2019 11:00:00 AM

ACT General Info, College Admissions

Are you taking the ACT? Before registering, you should know how admissions officers look at your scores. Do they consider Math, Science, Reading, and English individually, or do they care more about the composite score?

You might be relieved to hear that many colleges "superscore" your ACT scores by taking the best subscores across all your test dates and creating the strongest possible composite score. Read on for the full list of colleges that superscore the ACT, followed by some tips on how you can use this policy to your advantage.

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The 5 Best ACT Prep Courses: Which One Is Right for You?

Posted by Hannah Muniz | Aug 1, 2019 4:00:00 PM

ACT General Info, ACT Strategies

Studying for the ACT on your own can be intimidating, especially if you’ve never taken a test like it before. Fortunately, there’s always the option of enrolling in an ACT prep class.

We go over the five best ACT prep courses and explain their biggest pros and cons. Then, we give you four tips for ensuring you get the most out of the ACT prep class you decide to take.

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Which States Require the ACT? Full List and Advice

Posted by Alex Heimbach | Jul 21, 2019 8:00:00 PM

ACT General Info

Over the past five years, the number of states that administer the ACT statewide has more than doubled: there are now 12 states that require every junior to take the test and eight more that either require the test in some districts or offer it as a free option for students who wish to take it.

This post explains why these programs exist, which states have them, and how you can take advantage of them if you live in one of these states.

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Important: Read This Before Sending ACT Scores to Colleges

Posted by Dr. Anna Wulick | Jul 21, 2019 5:30:00 PM

ACT General Info, ACT Logistics


No college application is complete without test scores. But sending scores to colleges doesn't have to be a confusing and frustrating process! Read this article to understand all the options for sending out your ACT scores, to get help with the many decisions you will have to make, and to know what to do if you run into problems.

I'll describe the basic process of how to send ACT scores, how to take full advantage of the ACT's individual score reporting, when to send scores, and how to make sure your scores don't get lost. At the same time, I'll go through the pros and cons of every option and suggest a recommended course of action. 

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Expert Review: The Official ACT Prep Guide

Posted by Samantha Lindsay | Jul 21, 2019 1:00:00 PM

ACT General Info, ACT Strategies

Looking for official ACT practice? The Official ACT Prep Guide is a great resource.

In this article, I'll provide a review of the current Official ACT Prep Guide, including positives and negatives of the new guide, how it differs from The Real ACT Prep Guide (3rd Edition), and whether or not you should buy it to help you through the study process.

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Complete Official ACT Practice Tests, Free Links

Posted by Allen Cheng | Jul 21, 2019 12:00:00 PM

ACT General Info

No matter how you prep for the ACT—whether you have a tutor, take a class, or study by yourself—you must get access to official ACT tests. These tests are released by ACT, Inc. and contain real questions given to actual students on previous test dates. These questions have been removed from circulation (so you won't ever see them on a real test), but their quality is second to none when it comes to ACT realism.

In this post, I'll tell you how to find all currently available official ACT practice tests. Most are free and offer a good way to get your feet wet with ACT prep. We'll also discuss how to use these tests to improve your ACT score.

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Duke TIP ACT Score Requirements

Posted by Laura Staffaroni | Jul 14, 2019 10:30:00 AM

ACT General Info, Early Achievers (7th/8th Grade)

Maybe you’ve read our article about Duke’s Talent Identification Program (TIP), maybe you’ve heard about it from other students, or maybe you did your own research. You've heard vague hints of "score requirements," but don't know exactly what that means—do you have to take the ACT in order to take part in TIP? How well do you have to do on the ACT in order to become a TIPster? (I refuse to believe that students who participate in TIP do not go by this name.)

There are ACT (or SAT) score requirements for the Duke TIP: specifically, there are score requirements for Summer Studies programs and eStudies courses. I'm going to cover this complicated topic in exhaustive detail, explaining what the programs are, what the ACT score requirements are, and giving you some tips on how to meet these requirements. These requirements all refer to the regular ACT, not the ACT Aspire or ACT EXPLORE.

Feature image credit: Ilyse Whitney/Flickr
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What Are the Score Choice Policies at Ivy Leagues?

Posted by Halle Edwards | Jun 23, 2019 1:00:00 PM

ACT General Info, SAT General Info, College Admissions

Many students assume colleges will see every score they've earned on the SAT and ACT when they apply.

However, while some top-tier schools do require your full testing histories, many don't. Some even allow score choice for the SAT, which allows you to send only the scores you want them to see, or they allow you to pick your best ACT test date.

If you're aiming for a top-tier school like an Ivy League, Stanford, or MIT, read this guide to learn how they evaluate standardized tests to help you best prepare.

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PreACT Practice Tests: Where to Find Them and How to Prep

Posted by Hannah Muniz | May 26, 2019 12:00:00 PM

ACT General Info, Other High School

Getting ready to take the PreACT? Then you might be wondering whether you should prep for it—and what resources you can use. Is there a PreACT practice test you can take? What kinds of PreACT resources does ACT, Inc. offer?

Keep reading to learn why it’s a good idea to lightly prep for the PreACT, and get a comprehensive list of the best PreACT practice tests and materials you can use in your studying.

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Printable ACT Practice Tests PDFs: 6 FREE Official Tests

Posted by Allen Cheng | May 19, 2019 2:00:00 PM

ACT General Info

No matter how you prep for the ACT—whether you have a tutor, take a class, or study by yourself—you must get access to official, printable ACT tests. These tests are released by ACT, Inc., and contain real questions given to actual students on previous test dates. Although all of these questions have been removed from circulation (meaning you won't ever see them on the real ACT), their quality is second to none when it comes to realistic ACT practice.

In this post, I'll tell you where you can find all official, printable ACT practice tests with answer keys. I'll also give you key strategies to help you make big improvements on each practice test.

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Free Older Official ACT Practice Tests

Posted by Dr. Anna Wulick | May 19, 2019 12:30:00 PM

ACT General Info

There’s one thing that every student studying for the ACT definitely needs: practice tests that are almost identical to what you will face on your test day. No matter how else you study, we've found that most students really benefit from practicing by taking the full ACT test several times in as close to test-taking conditions as possible. This is the best way to get comfortable with the format, timing and pace, your own endurance, and ways to manage your stress.

So how do you get your hands on enough ACT tests to put yourself in the hot seat for practice? In this article, I’ll link to all the official tests and question sets released by ACT, and give you suggestions on where to find others, so that you have more than enough practice materials to get ready for the ACT.

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ACT Score to GPA Conversion Table

Posted by Dr. Fred Zhang | Feb 3, 2019 6:00:00 PM

ACT General Info

Are you interested in converting your GPA to ACT scores or vice versa? This can be useful if you're trying to estimate your ACT score based on your current grades. In this guide, we've pored over the statistics to give you the information needed to convert between GPA and ACT scores! However, before we get started, let's briefly go over a few caveats.

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Historical ACT Percentiles for 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, and 2011

Posted by Dora Seigel | Jan 27, 2019 1:00:00 PM

ACT General Info

For those currently taking the ACT or who took it in 2011-2018, you might wonder: how does your percentile compare with students who got the same score in other years? In this guide, I'll explain what percentiles are, how they work for the ACT, and why they matter. I'll also give you ACT percentile charts for 2011-2018 so you can see how your scores stack up against historical ones.

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