The ACT is designed to evaluate your college readiness by testing your familiarity with the core concepts of a high school curriculum. It takes a significant amount of time to learn all the tested math, science, reading comprehension, and grammar concepts and to practice applying them on timed practice tests.
With this in mind, most students should plan to study for the ACT for at least a year. Such a timeline will give you the opportunity to master the material in manageable assignments over the long term. We have found that most students achieve their best scores when they begin preparing for the ACT toward the end of their sophomore years in preparation to take the ACT for the first time in the spring of their junior year. This schedule will leave time to retake the test, if necessary, the following summer and fall. You can refer to our college admissions timeline for more detailed information.
If you have less time to prepare, either on your own or with a tutor, focus on taking timed practice tests. Review the concepts underlying the questions that you miss. This approach will allow you both to pinpoint your weaknesses and to become comfortable with the format and pacing of the test.
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