ACT Exam 2023: Dates, Registration, Eligibility, Syllabus, Pattern

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Mrunmayai Bobade
Updated on May 17, 2023 6:14 PM IST

When applying for a Bachelor’s program abroad, the ACT exam might have come to light. Over the years, ACT scores have had a significant impact on an international applicant’s chances of acceptance to leading colleges and universities. 

The exam provides an overview of the preparedness of high school students for attending college. Also, apart from it being a college readiness indicator, the ACT exam allows students to make headway in the admission process with a STEM score. 

Further, the ACT boasts an optional writing test since not all universities require a writing test score for admission. Let us now break down the key aspects of the ACT exam including exam dates, fees, patterns, and the like.

Latest Update

  • January 01,2023 12:00 AM IST
  • ACT/SAT Requirements Ruled Out at 80% of US Universities!

    Almost 80% of the universities and colleges in the US including the Ivy League colleges have decided to rule out the ACT/SAT test score requirement for admissions in 2023. The pandemic and related test centre closures evidently hastened the movement to a great extent.


  • August 04,2022 12:00 AM IST
  • CalTech will not Require ACT Scores till 2025

    In a recent decision, CalTech has announced that they will not require standardised test scores like ACT till the academic session 2025. Test scores have little or no power in determining the eligibility of candidates. They are now rigorously assessing the other parts of the application process to admit students.

  • April 22,2022 12:00 AM IST
  • 1800+ Universities in US Have Gone ACT Optional

    Around 1,840 US Universities followed the suit of remaining test-optional. They will not be needing ACT scores for admissions in the next academic cycle and candidates will be tested on the basis of their overall student profile. Submission of test scores is up to the will of students as there will be no negative results on their offers.

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ACT Exam 2023

Nearly 2 million students globally take the ACT exam as per the ACT profile report. The exam serves as an indicator of “college readiness” and the test pattern is based on the high school curriculum that the students are already familiar with. ACT is conducted seven times annually in India and five times across the world. 

The time duration of the ACT exam is 2 hours and 55 minutes excluding the essay section. Including the essay section, it takes 3 hours and 35 minutes to complete the test. Each ACT section is scored on a scale of 1 to 36 points. The composite scores of ACT are calculated based on the average score of four sections. The test scores will be different in the case of an exam with a writing test.

ACT Full Form

The full form of ACT is American College Testing. It is a standardised aptitude test that serves the purpose of measuring the college readiness of high school students preparing to study bachelors in US colleges and universities. The test scores are also accepted in other countries such as Canada, Australia and other 200+ international institutions outside the United States. The test is administered by ACT Incorporated and tests the English, Math, Reading and Math sections. There is also an optional writing test of 40 minutes. 

Know How to Get Admission in US Colleges!

Why ACT Exam is Taken?

Lakhs of students globally take the ACT exam every year for admission purposes. The reasons that make ACT exams favourable among students are:

  • All colleges and universities in the US accept ACT and 225 other institutions across the world also accept the scores.

  • As the exam is a curriculum-based achievement test, it is a true reflector of the readiness of students for college. Also, it is particular for students aspiring to take up STEM-based courses

  • Statements of Purpose, letters of recommendation and GPA scores are highly individualised performance metrics. ACT scores, on the other hand, give a more common ground to compare students. 

  • There is no penalty for wrong answers in the ACT exam. So students can try their hands at guessing.

  • The ACT exam syllabus is completely based on the high school curriculum and there is a lack of any surprise element. Students can tackle the questions easily.

  • The chances of getting a scholarship increase with good ACT test scores

  • The profile and education or career planning section helps students to prepare for life after school.

  • The ACT student report includes separate scores in subject areas besides composite scores. It helps to highlight strengths and weaknesses. It shows a comparison of ranks to others. 

ACT Highlights 2023

Refer to the table below for ACT Highlights 2023:



Exam Name


ACT Full Form

American College Testing

Conducting Body

ACT, Inc.

Exam Level


Exam Mode

Both Paper-Based & Computer-Based Mode


2 Hours 55 Minutes (+ 40 Minutes essay is optional)


English, Reading, Maths, Science (Writing section is optional)

Structure of Exam

4 tests + 1 essay (optional)

Negative Marking


Total Questions

215 questions + 1 essay

ACT Exam Fees

With Writing Section: USD 68

Without Writing Section: USD 52


No expiration

Important Dates for ACT Registration 2023

ACT is administered across different test centres in different parts of the world. In the US, Puerto Rico and US Territories, it is conducted through seven annual test dates, one each in the month of September, October, December, February, April, June and July, every year.

Internationally, the ACT test can be taken six times a year, i.e. in September, October, December, February, April, and June. ACT exam in India is always held on Saturdays unless the student has some religious restrictions. In such cases, students can take the exam on Sundays. Each student can make 12 attempts for the ACT test.

Here are the official ACT dates India along with the ACT Registration 2023

ACT Test Dates

ACT Registration Last Date

Registration with Late Fee

 June 10 and June 11, 2022

May 13, 2022

June 27, 2022

July 15 and July 16, 2022

 June 13, 2022

 July 1, 2022

Who can take the ACT 2023?

ACT exam or the American College Testing is accepted for undergraduate admissions by universities and colleges in the United States. Commonly, the ACT is taken by all high school graduates aspiring to pursue undergraduate programs across different institutions in the US, this also includes those students who have completed their secondary education in other countries. 

Institutions rely on ACT for admission to undergraduate programs as they cannot be familiar with the academic rigour of all the schools in America and secondary schools in other countries. ACT is one common data point that is used to compare all the applicants.

Students studying in grades 6 through 9 can also take the ACT. The ACT test eligibility requirements stipulate that the candidate must be 13 years old to take the exam. There is no maximum age. Candidates under the age of 13 may take the exam with the aid of ACT customer service.

ACT 2023 Exam Pattern

The ACT is a computer-based exam conducted to check the readiness of high school students with the help of four main subjects. The four subjects are English, Reading, Math, and Science. There is also a Writing section which is optional and depends specifically on the student or the university requirements. 

The ACT is an international standardized test that has a well-structured exam pattern. Each test section is timed and has a definite set of questions. The total duration of the exam is 2 hours and 55 minutes, excluding the writing section, which takes additional 40 minutes. 

There is no negative marking for the test. It allows students to attempt all the questions of the test even if they are unsure of the correct answer.

ACT Test Pattern 2023

Here are a few important details about ACT Test Pattern 2023:

  • The ACT syllabus comprises Maths, English, Reading, Science, and optional writing sections.

  • The ACT is a 3 hours long exam, and if the candidate opts for the optional writing, then it will continue for up to 4 hours.

  • The ACT Score has a range of 1 – 36 for each of the four sections.

  • The optional writing section is termed ACT Plus Writing.

  • Multiple-Choice Questions.

  • No negative marking rule.

  • Total 215 questions

Section-Wise ACT Test Pattern

The ACT consists of four sections namely English, Reading, Maths, and Science. The writing section is the fifth section that is absolutely optional. Candidates need to pay extra fees for attempting the writing section. They are also provided with an extra time of 40 minutes for completing the fifth section of the exam. Illustrated below is the section-wise exam pattern of the ACT.


Total Questions

Time Duration


75 Questions

45 Minutes


40 Questions

35 Minutes


60 Questions

60 Minutes


40 Questions

35 Minutes


1 Question

40 Minutes

Note: English, Reading, Maths, and Science sections are multiple-choice questions whereas the writing section has an essay writing question.

ACT 2023 Eligibility

ACT test does not have any apparent hard and fast rules which make candidates eligible to take the test. Any candidate who has completed a minimum education in high school can appear for the exam. Though ACT does not list any prerequisites for the exam, there are some requirements which need to be fulfilled by registering candidates to take the test. The test is generally taken by 13+-year-old high school students. 

There are no age restrictions for appearing for the exam. However, one needs to have an International credit/debit card to register for the exam and a valid International passport to serve as valid identification proof. Also, fluency in English is one of the factors that is considered necessary to appear for this exam.

Eligibility Criteria for ACT Test 2023-24

  • A candidate must have completed minimum age of 13 years or have completed high school education.

  • Even though there are no grade or age limit criteria for the test, the students have to meet the course-wise eligibility criteria which can be different for every university.

  • A candidate must have a valid International passport as proof of identification.

  • A candidate must have an International credit/debit card to register for the exam.

  • Candidates should take their ACT 2 months before their university application dates. It takes around two to eight weeks for the committee to release the official results.

  • Students under the age of 13 can also apply for the test in addition to high school graduates. But due to Internet privacy laws, students have to opt for a test that is paper-based.

  • Candidates that are below 13 years of age cannot create their MyACT. In this case, the candidate should contact the ACT Customer Support authorities and get their assistance to complete the registration process.

ACT 2023 Test Dates

ACT exam dates can be found on the official ACT website, which they update every year. International students have five ACT test dates allotted in total, and three of them have slots between September to December. In general, you need to register for the act test at least one month before the act test dates. 

To be on the safer side, it is advisable to appear for the first attempt in April/June to have a time window for improvement. This will give you plenty of time to analyze your score results, work on your weaknesses and strategise a plan so that you can improve your performance on the second attempt, in case you are planning to give one around September.

Candidates must choose the ACT test dates at least two months before the application process for the University starts. As it takes around two to eight to get the official result in hand. 

Here are a few important things you need to keep in mind about ACT exam dates 2023

  • One should schedule the exam at least two months before the university application procedure starts. Candidates should not schedule the exam dates when they are preoccupied with other important things.

  • University applications require official ACT scores, so the students should schedule the exam well in advance as it takes around two to eight weeks to get the official test results in hand.

  • Even though there are no age or grade restrictions, it is advisable to appear for your ACT when you have completed your 10th class, as it covers the subjects like Geometry, Algebra, etc, that are part of the ACT syllabus as well. 

  • One can attempt the ACT test over 12 times. But is advisable to take not more than three attempts for this test. 

  • Candidates should start the preparation for the ACT test at least one year earlier than the ACT test dates.

ACT 2023 Test Centers

The ACT Exam in India is held multiple times around the year and in various major cities all across the country.

The candidates need to choose the ACT Test India Centers at the time of Registration. The students have the liberty to choose the test dates and test centres according to their preferences and feasibility. Candidates are required to pay an ACT Registration Fee for their enrollment in the exam. Indian candidates looking to appear for their ACT are expected to register and book the nearest Centre. It is recommended to choose the closest test centres for better accessibility. There are two slots.

Following are some of the major ACT test centres in India:




Ahmedabad International School


All India Institute of Local Self Government

Oakridge International School


KIIT International School


CPS Global

Talking Technology Pvt Ltd


The Doon School


Council for American Education

Merittrac Services Pvt Ltd


Falcon Force Pvt Ltd


Sreyas Institute of Engineering and Technology


Orlando Academy


Jayshree Periwal International School

Neerja Modi School


Kodaikanal International School


Pareeksha Online Examination Centre c/o - Universal Solutions


Smart Wonders School


Aditya Birla World Academy

GNVS Institute Of Management

Singapore International School

Vivekanand Education Society Inst of Management Studies And Research


Woodstock School


G. H. Raisoni School Of Business Management


Tai Infotech Pvt Ltd


Sankalp Business School


Delhi Public School Vijayawada

What All Things You Should Carry To An ACT Test Center

In order to go be properly prepared carry the following to the ACT test centre:

  • A candidate should carry a valid proof of Identification, without which the students are not allowed to enter the test centre premises.

  • A candidate can carry with them a traditional analogue watch without an alarm. Digital watches are not accepted in test centres.

  • A candidate can carry a permitted calculator for solving the Mathematics section.

  • In case the candidate does not have valid identification proof, he/she can present the ACT Student Identification with a photo.

ACT 2023 Registration

Test dates are different for the US and non-US candidates. All international candidates should be careful while selecting the dates at the time of registration. The ACT Test Registration process takes around 40 minutes. The ACT exam is taken by almost two million candidates from more than 130 countries every year. 

The registration of ACT provides both the online and offline process of ACT registration. The ACT registration fee in India is around INR USD 55 (INR 4,134) for no writing and USD 70(INR 5,261) for writing. The ACT test in India registration can be cancelled once registered, but the basic registration fee and other service fees are non-refundable. 

Ways to Apply for ACT

There are three ways through which a candidate can register via any of the following methods:

  • Register Online for ACT

  • Register via mail for ACT

  • Register for Standby Admittance for ACT

For ACT registration in India, the candidates will need:

  • A computer/laptop with a good internet connection. (use of a phone for registration is not recommended)

  • A reliable browser like internet explorer, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, etc.

  • International credit card/debit card or other payment methods

  • High school course documents and other required documents.

  • Headshot photo

The registration process can get meticulous so it is advised to keep all the academic documents, identity proofs, and payment cards ready at the time of the process

ACT Online Registration 

Following are some of the steps that you should keep in mind before opting for the online method for registration.

Step 1: Gather all the Required Information 

Step 2: Visit the Official Website

Step 3: Create an Account

Step 4: Register to Test

Step 5: Profile Selection Needs to be Completed

Step 6: Select a Date and the Test Option

Step 7: Select the Colleges to Send your Scores

Step 8: Choose Your Test Center

Step 9: Review the information you have entered

Step 10: Make the Payment

Step 11: Upload your Photograph

ACT Test Registration Through Mail

If you prefer to register through mail, here is the process that you can follow:

Step 1: Request for a Mail Packet

Step 2: Fill out the information

Step 3: Mail the Completed Paperwork

ACT Exam Fees

Students who are willing to sit for the ACT test will have to pay fees depending on if they wish to give the writing test.


ACT Fees


With Writing Section

USD 88 

It includes reports for you, your high school, and up to four colleges

Without Writing Section

USD 63

It includes reports for you, your high school, and up to four colleges

Test Option Change

USD 25

If you switch to ACT (no writing) before testing begins.

Additional ACT Fees

These are the extra charges which you might need to pay



Late Registration 

USD 36

Stand by testing

USD 63

Change Fee(Change of test date or test centre)

USD 40

Score reports to 5th and 6th college choices

USD 16

Additional Score Reports

USD 16

Test Information Release

USD 30 (during registration)

USD 40 (after the test)

Note: The ACT costs are subject to change without notice. So candidates are advised to check with the ACT website or check our website for current updates.

ACT 2023 Slot Booking

Slot Booking is a crucial task in the exam preparation process. A lot of candidates apply for the exam at the same time. The slots are allotted to the candidates on a First-come-first-serve basis. 

Every year, the ACT test dates are released on the official ACT website where students can register for their suitable dates and test centres for the exam. This process of selecting the desired test dates, test centres, and time slots for the exam is called ACT Slot Booking.

ACT exam fees in India are USD 155 or INR 11,198 (approx) for without writing, and USD 166.50 or INR 12,468 for taking the exam with writing. If a candidate misses a deadline, they can register for the ACT exam by paying a late fee of USD 35. ACT exam fees can be paid via debit or credit cards or online fund transfer.

ACT test centres are available at numerous places across India and the exam is conducted multiple times throughout the year. Test-takers need to select ACT centres in India during the time of slot booking.

ACT 2023 Syllabus

The ACT exam syllabus is extensive and defines topics for all four subjects. The ACT exam format is primarily based on high school subjects - English, Mathematics, Reading, Science, and Writing (optional). The ACT exam syllabus chiefly focuses on the senior secondary level.

ACT English Syllabus

The ACT English syllabus consists of passages that examine rhetorical, structural, discursive, usage, and mechanics skills. The grammar, punctuation, and proper sentence formation are tested under usage and mechanics, whereas under the rhetorical section how efficiently the candidate grasps the passage is studied.

Each of the English syllabus questions consists of 4 options and some have a ‘No Error’ option to select from. The ACT exam format of English puts focus on certain specific topics:

  • Management of Writing (29-32%)

  • Language Expertise (13-19%)

  • Following Conventions of Standard English (51 - 56%)

ACT Reading Syllabus

The ACT reading syllabus examines the candidate’s reading skills through different contexts of passages. The different subjects that are covered under this section are – social science, natural science, humanities, and literary fiction. The passages provide proper information with a title, author’s name, and backdrop details. The main focus is on the interpretive skills of a student rather than the theoretical English skills.

The ACT reading syllabus focuses on certain factors:

  • Main keyword and its details (55-60%)

  • Structure (25-30%)

  • Keyword integration and analysis

ACT Math Syllabus 

The ACT math syllabus is categorized into two sections: One that puts an emphasis on all the direct questions and another one on complex questions. The ACT math syllabus allows a calculator.

The direct questions concentrate more on the candidate’s knowledge of formulas, concepts, and overall fundamental mathematical basics. Whereas, the complex one focuses on higher-level formulas, theorems, problems, and complex concepts.

The two sections of the ACT math syllabus are:

  • Higher-level Math (57-60%)

  • Pre-Algebra (20-25%)

  • Elementary Algebra (15-20%)

  • Intermediate Algebra (15-20%)

  • Coordinate Geometry (15-20%)

  • Fundamental Skills (40-43%)

ACT Science Syllabus

The ACT science syllabus comprises questions related to Physics, Biology, Chemistry, and Earth Sciences. This section has a lot of tables, graphs, and charts.

The main motive of the ACT science syllabus is to test whether the candidate has properly understood the concepts and has developed their reasoning skills rather than holistically mugging up the facts and figures. The 3 sections of the ACT science syllabus are:

  • Data Interpretation (45-50%)

  • Scientific Investigation (20-30%)

  • Preliminary inferences model and result (25-35%)

ACT 2023 Preparation Tips

Preparation and practice with proper discipline are the keys to success. No matter how difficult the ACT exam syllabus may appear to the candidates, one can do better by following a good preparation strategy and practising the ACT mock test.

Following are some section-wise ACT preparation tips that one can easily follow to ace: 

ACT Preparation Tips: English

  • Observe the elements of writing such as tone and emphasis that the text conveys.

  • Be mindful of inquiries with no underlined divides—that implies you will have gotten some information about a segment of the entry or about the section all in all.

  • Examine each answer decision and decide how it contrasts with the others. 

  • Select the best answer. Consider the entirety of the appropriate response decisions before you pick the one that best reacts to the inquiry.

ACT Preparation Tips: Reading

  • Read all the passages cautiously.

  • Consider the entirety of the appropriate responses before picking the one that is suitable to react to the inquiry.

  • Refer to the passage(s) while solving the questions and confirm if the answers are in context to the questions asked.

ACT Preparation Tips: Mathematics

  • The mathematics section has so many trick questions. One should be cautious and read the question multiple times to understand what exactly is asked.

  • Calculators are usually allowed, but make sure to be updated with the latest information regarding the use of calculators. Do not rely on them completely. 

  • Increase the basic skills of mathematics by practising it daily. Get thorough with the basics: Addition and Subtraction of large numbers as well as Multiplication and Division in 2-3 digit numbers. Squares and Cubes of numbers and basic tables are essential. 

ACT Preparation Tips: Science

  • Read the entire passage cautiously.

  • Refer to the logical data given in the passage while addressing the question.

  • Read and consider all the choices given before picking the one that best suits the question.

  • Note viewpoints that are conflicting in certain passages.

ACT Preparation Tips: Writing

  • Write a comprehensive and coherent essay.

  •  Clearly express your own viewpoint on the issue and analyze the given topic well. Make the essay well-structured.

  •  Give examples and proper reasoning to develop and support your thoughts and arguments.

  • Communicate your ideas in an effective standard of written English with a strong vocabulary and no grammatical errors.

ACT 2023 Best Books

While looking for ACT study material, it is best to check out the resources provided by ACT Inc. (The conducting body of ACT). Apart from the best study material to refer to, ACT Inc. has made a free tool called ACT Academy available for the ACT exam in India.

Best Books for ACT preparation

The official ACT Prep Guide: It provides students with six full-length practice tests, available both online and offline based on the ACT exam syllabus This is the most highly rated and highly recommended guide that comes with in-depth answer explanations and helpful advice for all major content areas and question types.

The Princeton Review's "ACT Premium Prep": This ACT prep book provides candidates with eight practice tests (four online, four in the book) along with simple yet articulate solutions, and in-depth answer explanations. The guide also comes with video tutorials, content review, and a comprehensive study plan made in a way that suits the understanding and needs of the students. 

ACT Prep Black Book: This book can be a great addition to your collection of prep books. The ACT Black Book provides step-by-step instructions for all practice questions across the three publicly released official ACT practice tests. Candidates will also be able to analyze and learn strategies and tips to maximize their scores. It also helps candidates to understand how much time should be spent on particular question sets, how to read and comprehend the questions correctly, and how to craft a high-scoring essay that is well-structured yet flowing. 

Kaplan's ACT Prep Plus: This book comprises five ACT practice tests (one in the book and four online) and both diagnostic pre-quizzes and practice assessments after each chapter. It breaks down solutions for the questions, in a manner that is easier for the students to understand and grasp. Getting this book for your preparation will also give you access to video lectures and a one-year membership to Kaplan's online centre.

ACT 2023 Practice Tests

To enhance the last-minute preparations of the ACT exam syllabus or to understand their readiness for the ACT test, it is important to attempt ACT Subject Tests or ACT practice tests. There is a lot of material available on the internet like sample ACT mock test papers, quick notes for last-minute preparations, free mock tests, etc.

To prepare for the exam, ACT mock tests are the best tool. It comprises every question of every type of question found in the final ACT test. Solving from the ACT practice tests helps candidates to get an idea of time and gives a real-time exam feeling.

While one can find many options both online and offline for the preparation for the ACT, it is necessary for students to find reliable sources for the same.

Online ACT Mock Test Paper

  • Candidates should always take the timed ACT practice test through practice tests, available on the official ACT website. 

  • Candidates should try to create an environment similar to the test centres, to get accustomed to the environment of the exam centre.

  • Creating an environment similar to the test centre

  • The official time limit of 4 hours should be timed to solve the ACT Practice tests. After finishing, candidates should review the answer to understand the weak and strong points and try to work on the weaker ones.

  • Candidates should always prefer practice papers from the official ACT websites, Kaplan, or other reliable sources.

  • Make sure to solve as many practice papers as possible to analyze your mistakes better and work on them and get desired results.

ACT Practice Tests Overview

Candidates preparing for the ACT can get free access to the online ACT practice tests on the official ACT website. The ACT practice tests are available for all four subjects. Additionally, writing ACT subject tests help with practice.

Candidates have to sign-up on the website providing them with basic credentials of name, email Id, country, and role (say student) to get free access to these practice papers. The ACT practice paper is a complete guide for the preparation of ACT test-takers.

Following given is the list that has an overview of all the topics covered in practice tests: 

  • An overview of ACT 2023

  • Full-length subject-wise papers

  • Solutions to solve these practice papers

  • General test-taking strategies

  • Guidelines to take each ACT Subject tests

ACT 2023 Question Papers

While preparing for any entrance exam, the key to acing it lies in, consistent practice and solving ACT Question Papers. Practising question papers after finishing the ACT exam syllabus can be of great help to get an idea of the preparation that is done and how much more is still required. This can boost your confidence and prepare you for the final exam.

Solving these practice question papers is considered the best way to prepare for the ACT because, it gives a clear idea of the question paper sets, exam patterns, and time management tactics for the final day of the exam. From gaining an in-depth knowledge of the test structure to properly training themselves to attempt the test with minimal faults, solving question papers, especially for the ACT, is considered very beneficial for the test-takers.

Candidates can get access to the previous years' question papers and other mock tests on the official ACT website and also on other web pages on the internet.

ACT 2023 Result/Score

The ACT scores/results are graded on a range of 1 to 36 points for each part (English, Math, Reading, and Science). The composite score is calculated by averaging the results of all four tests. The composite score is unaffected by the writing score.

How is the ACT is scored?

Writing and multiple-choice examinations are scored differently on the ACT. For multiple-choice assessments, one right answer receives a raw score of 1 and the incorrect answer receives no marks.

  • A maximum raw score of 40 can be obtained on a 40-question exam, and a maximum raw score of 60 may be scored on a 60-question test.

  • The raw results from each test are then translated to a scale of 1-36.

  • The composite score is the average of the four tests' converted scaled scores, rounded off to the closest whole number.

  • The English Language Arts (ELA) score is calculated by converting the students' English Writing and Reading scores on a scale.

  • Without writing aspirants, no ELA will be created for the ACT.

  • On a scale of 2 to 12, the ACT writing test is graded. Two examiners grade the examination on four parameters: ideas and analysis, development and support, organization and language use, and conventions, on a scale of 1 to 6.

ACT Results

The results of the ACT exam in India are usually available online within eight weeks following the test administration. If you took the ACT with writing, your writing results will be available online as soon as they are available, which is usually two weeks after your general results.

How to See an ACT Score?

Students can obtain their results using their ACT account after they are available. Students should keep checking the scores until they see theirs, as they are added every week.

  • For individuals who took the exam utilizing computer-based testing, multiple-choice results are usually available two business days after the test. Additionally, students who took the test using paper and pencil received their results two to ten weeks after the test date.

  • The results of the writing exam are available two to three weeks after the results of the multiple-choice tests.

ACT Score Validity: Total ACT scores are valid for five years following the testing year in which they were obtained.

ACT 2023 Cut-offs

The ACT cutoff is the minimum score that a university will accept in order for a candidate to be admitted. While some colleges need a section-by-section ACT cutoff, others may want the total or composite exam score, or even both.

The ACT is accepted by some of the best colleges in the United States, Canada, and Europe. The ACT's average percentile score is 20.8, which is the 50th percentile of the overall score.

ACT Score Band

The average ACT score is used to compare the results of applicants who took the exam on the same day. The maximum ACT band score is 36. The average ACT score for the most recent exam was 20.6; however, this varies with each subsequent exam. The ACT test is graded on a scale of 36 points for each component. The ACT composite score is calculated by averaging the results of all four sections: Science, Mathematics, English, and Reading.

The ACT score is calculated using the percentile scoring technique and runs from 1 to 36. Percentile scoring describes a test taker's performance in comparison to all other test takers on that particular day. For example, if you get a 75 percentile on the ACT, that means you outperformed 75% of all test takers on that particular day.

ACT Section-Wise And Composite Cutoff

The ACT is graded on a scale of 1 to 36 points for each section: English, Math, Reading, and Science. To get the composite average score, take the sum of all individual section scores, put them together, and then subtract the average.

The ACT Composite score ranges from 1 to 36 points. The following is a breakdown of a good ACT average score for admission to a good overseas institute per section:

ACT Section

Minimum ACT Cut-off Marks 2023











For a detailed understanding, refer to the ACT Scoring Chart.

ACT 2023 Exam Acceptance

The ACT test is a standardized test that serves as a parameter of critical thinking in aptitude. The universities based in the United States, Canada, and other parts of the world keep a close eye on the ACT scores of the students, announce cut-offs and offer admissions and scholarships based on their ACT scores. Since most colleges and universities worldwide accept ACT scores, it is important to prepare and perform well in the ACT test to secure a good university and a bright future.

Candidates who give the ACT exam in India need to select the participating colleges to send the test scores at the time of ACT Registration itself. The scores are sent directly to these universities once the scores are released. Candidates can send scores to other universities apart from the ones they have applied to during the registration.

Around three thousand universities, scholarship-providing agencies, and course placement offices utilize the ACT score. These figures give a perspective of how important the ACT scores are. 

Following are some of the points that you should consider before sending ACT scores to the participating colleges: 

  • Before making a final choice about the universities, candidates have to check the eligibility and application criteria of a college.

  • If an applicant has applied for ACT 2023 multiple times, he/she can select which test date scores to submit to colleges.

  • The scores will be sent to universities only when the results are announced for both the multiple-choice questions and the writing section.

  • While shortlisting the colleges to send the ACT scores, the applicants must keep in my their desired coursework, preferable locations, and other factors.

  • Also, the applicants must keep in mind that universities do not shortlist students based on just their ACT scores. A holistic approach is kept in mind while shortlisting the applications.

There are so many factors like co-curricular activities, LORs (letters of Recommendation), essays, academic graphs, types of classes, and the overall behaviour of the candidate that are taken into consideration.

ACT 2023 Scholarships

Working hard for the ACT can give you rewards beyond your imagination. From merit scholarships to guaranteed scholarships. If the candidates can score well, the possibility of getting financial aid from the institutions can be better. It is important to have good research and understanding of the ACT scholarships and other provisions that are available for the applicants.

A good ACT score is often crucial in applying to college, but it can also help you qualify for scholarships. High ACT scores are common criteria for merit scholarships that are looking to award a scholarship to the best and brightest. Many colleges offer merit scholarships based on standardized test scores as well. Studying hard for the ACT can help get you into your desired universities.

ACT 2023 Scholarships

Here is the list of some famous merit-based scholarships for applicants with a good ACT score:


ACT Score Required

Amount Granted

MSLP Governor’s Best and Brightest Scholarship



Pacific Gas and Electric Company Asian ERG Scholarship


USD 2,000

Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholarship


USD 30,000

Deana’s Wish Memorial Scholarship


USD 2,000

Lloyd M. Fujie Scholarship for Accounting Major Students


USD 2,500

Matt Logies Memorial Scholarship


USD 5,000

Interested to Acquire a Full-Fledged Scholarship to Study in the USA? 

ACT Coaching Classes

Acing the ACT test will be an important criterion in getting admission to your preferred college in the USA. The ACT scores are crucial in determining if you will get admitted to the top universities in the USA. Therefore, while many students study on their own, some prefer to take expert guidance to go about the ACT test preparation.

Considering the global competition and the low acceptance rate at the top universities in the USA, it has become necessary for students to get personalized help to tackle the intricacies of the ACT test. 

There are several institutes that provide ACT coaching in India in both online and offline mode but the best ones will provide you with the following services:

  •  ACT coaching classes will give you personalized study plans and study materials to speed up your preparation.

  • They will help you to build in-depth knowledge of the ACT syllabus and also give training on test-taking skills.

  • It will boost your confidence through rigorous practice of ACT mock tests and ACT practice papers.

  • There will be doubt-clearing sessions to solve the problems the students might face while preparing.

  • The ACT coaching will aid you to evaluate the scores of the mock tests and provide a detailed review by identifying your strengths and weaknesses.

ACT Conducting Body

The ACT test is conducted by ACT Inc, a non-profit organisation dedicated to helping people achieve "education and workplace success". It was founded in 1959 by the University of Iowa professors Everett Franklin Lindquist and Ted McCarrel. Earlier known as "American College Testing", ACT changed its name to ACT, Inc. in 1996.

The first-ever ACT test was delivered to a total of 75,406 students on November 7, 1959. Today, the ACT is a leader in college and career readiness solutions for schools, students, government agencies, employers, and job seekers not just in the US but across the world.

ACT scores are widely accepted by universities in the United States that follow four-year programmes, as well as over 200 universities outside of the United States, including the extremely selective Ivy League schools in the United States and many of the revered Russell Group universities in the United Kingdom.

FAQs on ACT Overview

What is ACT full form?

The ACT full form is American College Testing. The exam is administered by ACT Incorporated. The ACT measures the readiness of high school students to study at colleges and universities mostly in the USA and Canada, through English, reading, maths and science questions. There is also an optional writing section in the ACT exam.

Is the ACT more important than GPA?

ACT and GPA are both equally important. While some colleges give more importance to higher GPAs, some colleges may give weightage to higher ACT scores over the GPA. However, both should not be ignored when applying for admissions abroad. Applicants must check the university’s individual website to find out about their admission requirements.

What are the guidelines to appear for the ACT? Are there any items that are prohibited during the exam?

The guidelines to appear for the ACT state that all test takers must wear a mask, maintain social distancing, undergo screening and maintain personal hygiene for safety. The items that are prohibited during the exam include:

  1. Textbooks, dictionaries (foreign language or other), scratch paper, notes, or other tools
  2. Correction fluid/tape, highlighter pens, coloured pens or pencils
  3. Other than an allowed calculator, any electronic device
  4. Reading material
  5. Tobacco in any form

What is the MyACT account?

MyACT is the ACT's new online registration portal, where students may maintain their ACT results, demographic information, high school CV, and college plans. A candidate's MyACT account is created on the official website of ACT to register for tests, view scores, send score reports, download the admit cards, etc. All details related to candidates taking the ACT can be checked on their respective MyACT accounts.

How many times can I attempt the ACT?

You can attempt the ACT a total of 12 times in 5 years. However, it is recommended that you take no more than three attempts at this test. Candidates should begin preparing for the ACT at least one year before the exam date. The ACT test is three-hour-long (technically 2 hours and 55 minutes). If you take the optional essay (the ACT Plus Writing), the exam takes 3 hours and 40 minutes, or slightly more than 4 hours with breaks to complete.

Who can take the ACT exam?

International students aspiring to pursue an undergraduate course in any US or Canadian institution can take the ACT exam. As the ACT is a junior-level test (meaning it evaluates the information that is typically accepted to be learned in 11th grade in the US school system), it is recommended to take your first ACT in the spring of your junior year. There are no specific eligibility criteria for the ACT.

Is it mandatory to take the ACT to enrol in a bachelor’s degree programme at US universities?

No, it is not mandatory to take the ACT to enrol in a bachelor’s degree programme at US universities. Many four-year universities in the US do not require ACT scores for admission and are referred to as test-optional. This implies that it is not mandatory to submit ACT results with your application, although you may do so if you want to. However, you should check the qualifying requirements of the individual institute and course.

How many times in a year is ACT conducted?

ACT is conducted six times a year for international locations and seven times a year for national cities. The test is approved by all four-year universities and colleges in the United States, as well as more than 225 universities abroad.

Who conducts the ACT?

The conducting body of ACT is currently run by a non-profit company named ACT Inc. The exam was created by Everett Franklin Lindquist, an education professor at the University of Iowa, in 1959 as a rival for the SAT, which had been operating for almost 20 years as a mainstream college admissions exam, especially in the United States and Canada.

Why should I take the ACT Exam?

The ACT or the American College Testing is a standardised test that international students seeking admission to undergraduate programmes in the United States and Canada must take. The ACT exam is designed to evaluate candidates' writing, mathematical, verbal, and scientific abilities. You should take the ACT because it drives students to achieve to the best of their abilities.

Should I send my ACT scores to a test-optional college?

Yes. If you have a test score, you should send your ACT scores to a test-optional college. If you are applying to extremely selective test-optional universities (i.e., schools with an acceptance rate of less than 30%) and have SAT/ACT scores in the middle 50% range (or higher), you should consider submitting your results to increase your chances of admission.

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