Cracking the ACT


The ACT was rigorously designed by education experts to trick its test takers and make them fail. Luckily, by knowing the right tips, it can be outmaneuvered and whatever score is desired can be achieved.

Junior Andrew Collins became one of top 25% of ACT test takers when he received a 24 out of 36.

“You need to do a general study of the test the night before, but longer, more specialized study should start way before that,” Collins said.

Collins believes that requirements should be looked at for the different colleges that are available, and use them as goals for what score is needed. He plans on going to the University of Kansas, Rockhurst University, Full Sail University, or MIT, and is shooting for a score of 31.

“You need to set the bar high, knowing that if you don’t reach it you’ll still have gone far,” Collins said.

Collins takes a well-rounded approach to reaching his 31. He thinks a mixture of books, classes, and online resources is the best way to improve his ACT score.

According to ACT prep teacher Janet Anderson-Brown, courses taken in school are important and reflect onto your ACT score.

“Taking rigorous courses that are going to be on the ACT and knowing which topics you need improvement on will prepare you,” Anderson-Brown said.

Anderson-Brown believes that the ACT prep class that is offered at the school is one of the best and least expensive ways to prepare for the ACT. The prep class goes in-depth through each of the topics that will be on the test, and prepares test takers with practice tests that mimic the real ACT.

“The best way to practice for the ACT is to take it,” junior Charles Shepherd said.

Shepherd uses online materials the most because they are easily accessible and very convenient to use. He also emphasizes the school’s ACT prep course.

“ACT prep is helping me by immersing me in an ACT-like environment. I can take practice tests which tell me which areas I need help with and which areas are fine,” Shepherd said.

Conventional study methods used by the majority of students do not always work on the ACT. Knowing how to beat the ACT is a useful skill for getting the score needed to get into many top colleges.