All about ACT Preparation: How to Prepare for ACT in 2023?

All about ACT Preparation: How to Prepare for ACT in 2023?

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All about ACT Preparation: How to Prepare for ACT in 2023?
Mahima Acharya

The ACT is a highly competitive entrance exam taken by millions of students each year who aspire to study in top universities in the US and a few other countries. Achieving a high score on the ACT is crucial for gaining admission to the college of your choice. To achieve this, a methodical study plan, an understanding of the preparation materials, and section-wise tips for studying are essential. Success on the ACT is directly proportional to the amount of effort and preparation put into it. Therefore, it is important to take into account all the factors that contribute to a successful outcome. 

In this guide, we will provide you with comprehensive information on how to prepare for the ACT and share some effective ACT prep tips to help you achieve your target score.

Steps in Preparing for ACT in 2023

Preparing for the ACT (American College Testing) test is an important step toward your college admission journey. An effective ACT test preparation plan can help you achieve your desired score and increase your chances of getting into your preferred college. Here are key steps for an effective ACT test preparation plan:

Understand the Test Format and Content

Understanding the ACT test format and content is the first step toward an effective preparation plan. The ACT test consists of four sections: English, Math, Reading, and Science, with an optional Writing section. The test has a time limit of 2 hours and 55 minutes (3 hours and 35 minutes with Writing). Familiarizing yourself with the test format and content can help you identify your strengths and weaknesses and develop a study plan.

Set Realistic Goals

Setting achievable goals is an essential step toward an effective ACT test preparation plan. Take a practice test to gauge your baseline score, and set a realistic score goal that is in line with your college admission requirements. Having a specific goal in mind will help you stay focused and motivated throughout the preparation period.

Create a Study Plan

A well-designed study plan can help you stay organized and on track with your preparation goals. Divide your preparation period into manageable segments, and allocate sufficient time for each section. Set aside time for practice tests, review, and revision. Use study materials, such as ACT test prep books, online resources, and study guides, to support your preparation.

The following information should be included in your study plan:

  • Daily study time commitment 
  • Prep classes are required
  • Prioritize subjects
  • Time frames and dates for taking the practice exams
  • Utilize the top study tools to prepare for the ACT

Focus on Weak Areas

Identifying and focusing on your weak areas can help you improve your overall score. Take practice tests to identify areas where you need to improve and allocate more time for these areas. Practice and review questions from past tests, and use study materials to develop your skills in the areas where you need to improve.

Refer to your Notes

Going back to your old school notes can be an effective way to refresh your memory on the key concepts that you have learned in high school. Your notes may contain important information, examples, and tips that are specific to your teachers' lessons and style of teaching, which can help you better understand the material and perform well on the ACT.

In addition to your old notes, you may also want to consider using other study materials, such as ACT test prep books, practice tests, and online resources. These resources can provide you with additional practice questions and strategies for approaching the exam.

Section Wise ACT Preparation Tips

The ACT typically includes components for English, Reading, Math, and Science. The ACT includes a writing assessment as well. However, enrolling in the same is not required. Since each section of the ACT has a different set of questions and varied weighting, students must read the section-by-section preparation advice. The following are the general recommendations for Section-wise ACT preparation:

English Section

  • Brush up on grammar rules such as subject-verb agreement, verb tense, pronoun usage, and punctuation.
  • Improve your vocabulary by reading books, newspapers, and other publications, and practicing with flashcards or word lists.
  • The English section will also test your ability to understand and analyze written passages. Practice reading passages and answering questions about them.
  • Develop your ability to identify grammatical errors, such as misplaced modifiers, parallel structure, and faulty comparisons.
  • The English section can be one of the highest-scoring sections for students. Therefore, do not rush through its preparation. Revise important concepts and practice.

Math Section

  • Familiarize yourself with the format and content of the test.
  • Review the concepts and topics covered in the test, such as algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and basic statistics.
  • Practice solving problems from past ACT Math tests or practice exams.
  • Develop a problem-solving strategy and stick to it, such as reading the problem carefully, identifying key information, and choosing the appropriate formula or method to solve the problem.
  • Practice working with a calculator and using it effectively to save time and avoid mistakes.
  • Learn and memorize important formulas and equations, such as the Pythagorean theorem, quadratic formula, and trigonometric identities.
  • Focus on your weaknesses and prioritize areas where you need more practice.
  • Manage your time during the test by pacing yourself and avoiding spending too much time on difficult problems.

Reading Section

  • Familiarize yourself with the format and types of passages on the test.
  • Practice reading and comprehending a variety of texts, such as news articles, scientific reports, and literary works.
  • Develop active reading skills, such as taking notes, underlining key ideas, and summarizing each paragraph.
  • Identify the author's purpose, tone, and point of view in each passage.
  • Look out for signal words and phrases that indicate transitions, comparisons, and cause-and-effect relationships.
  • Learn and practice different reading strategies, such as skimming, scanning, and close reading.
  • Practice time management by pacing yourself and avoiding getting stuck on difficult passages or questions.
  • Review and learn new vocabulary words, as well as context clues to help you figure out the meanings of unfamiliar words.
  • Take practice tests or use study guides to help you become more familiar with the test and build confidence.

Science Section

  • Review and become familiar with basic scientific concepts and terminology, such as biology, chemistry, physics, and earth science.
  • Practice reading and interpreting data from tables, graphs, and charts.
  • Develop scientific reasoning skills, such as identifying patterns, making inferences, and analyzing cause-and-effect relationships.
  • You must be able to identify and comprehend concepts that are pertinent to the information supplied, critically evaluate how the information relates to any findings or hypotheses, and use the information already known to draw new inferences, conclusions, or predictions.

Writing Section

  •  The foundation of your writing abilities can be built by reading newspapers and periodicals, listening to debates and news analyses, and engaging in discussions.
  • Write stories, poetry, reports, editorials, letters to the editor, and essays for practice. It greatly aids in improving writing abilities.
  • Set a timer and consider practicing while the timer is running because applicants will have 40 minutes to complete their essays. Speed needs to be considered.
  • Give your writing to others so they can give you comments. An individual can always improve and correct errors with the help of constructive criticism.


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