ACT Exam: Recommendations and Changes (Download PDF)

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ACT or American College Test is a national standardized test. It serves as a measurement of aptitude and critical thinking. Ascertains the college readiness of a high school student. Introduced as a competitor to the SAT in 1959. Both ACT and SAT are accepted by almost all major US Universities since last 5 years. About 1.9 million students take the ACT per year, and about 2.1 million take the SAT. Taking the whole test costs $52 without the optional writing section and $68 with it.

The Five Subsections on the ACT

  • Reading
  • Math
  • Science
  • English and writing
  • Which is optional - are graded on a scale of 1 to 36


  • To ensure that all students take rigorous academic courses.
  • As per the students’ individual needs giving educators resources to personalize instruction.
  • Assessment of Student learning.
  • Implementing the improvement strategies throughout students’ educational careers.
  • Education should be holistic.
  • Address the needs of the “Whole learner”.
  • Essentiality in social and emotional learning skills.

Changes in 2020 (W. E. F. September)

Section Retakes

  • Students can retake individual exam sections.
  • Maths, Reading, Science or English.


  • Students can average their best subject scores.
  • Multiple tests.
  • Creation of a new final score.

Testing Online

  • ACT can be taken on a computer.
  • Scores can be returned within two weeks.

Purpose of Section Retake

  • Section Retakes will allow students to not jeopardise the marks earned in sections taken earlier in the retake.
  • Increase the importance of standardised tests.
  • Only the best scores to be combined.
  • Candidates would likely end up with higher scores, test experts predict.
  • Students will be encouraged to continue retaking individual sections until they earn the highest scores possible.
  • To help ensure that all students are college and career ready when they graduate from high school.
  • Richer students would be able to afford more tests fees and tutors.
  • Online results will be available within two business days.
  • It takes two to eight weeks to get results from the paper-and-pencil tests.

ACT Eligibility

  • No specified perquisites listed for the exam.
  • Generally taken by 13+-year-old high school students.
  • No age or grade restrictions to appear for the exam.
  • An International credit/debit card to register for the exam.
  • A valid International passport to serve as a valid identification proof.


  • ACT announcement would put pressure on the College Board.
  • A disadvantage to those students who do not have access to coaching.
  • Students’ highest composite scores may not necessarily reflect their highest subscores.
  • Not clear whether colleges would evaluate applicants with superscore over multiple exams differently.


Difference Between ACT Vs SAT

Difference Between ACT Vs SAT



Used for admissions and merit-based scholarships.

Used for admissions and merit-based scholarships.

English, Math, Reading, Science Reasoning, Essay (Optional).

Reading, Writing & Language, Math, Essay (Optional).

Scored on a scale of 1–36.

Scored on a scale of 400–1600.

Optional. The essay will test how well you evaluate and analyze complex issues.

Optional. The essay will test your comprehension of a source text.

- Published/Last Modified on: February 22, 2020

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