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ACT ® PREPARATION AND TIPS Seth Keene Stacey Schultz.

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Presentation on theme: "ACT ® PREPARATION AND TIPS Seth Keene Stacey Schultz."— Presentation transcript:

1 ACT ® PREPARATION AND TIPS Seth Keene Stacey Schultz

2 GOAL SETTING What is the “required” score for admission to your 1 st choice school? Are you applying for scholarships with ACT score requirements? In addition to a composite score goal, set a goal for each test and sub-score. Set the bar high, but make it reachable!

3 TEST DATES ◦1 st : April/June of Junior Year ◦2 nd : September/October of Senior Year ◦3 rd : December/February of Senior Year

4 TEST PREPARATION #14+ Years of Math, Science, English #2ACT Preparation Course #3 Practice Workbook/On-line Resources Ideal Preparation Plan: ◦10% Understanding Test ◦80% Reviewing Skills ◦10% Test-taking Strategies

5 PREPARATION RESOURCES Online/Self-Paced Courses: ◦ACT Online Prep ($19.95 for 1 year) ◦SD MyLife and My Student Edge (FREE) Practice Tests ◦DSTEP, ASVAB, PSAT, SD Test-Outs ◦Preparing for the ACT (Archived editions online) Practice Books ◦The Real ACT Prep Guide ($30.95) Classroom Review Courses ◦Sylvan Learning Center ◦Keene Academy

6 TEST DAY TIPS Friday Night: ◦Eat a good meal rich in carbohydrates (such as pasta) at a reasonable hour. Be in bed by 11pm. ◦Set two alarms or ask family and friends to ensure you wake up. Saturday Morning: ◦Wake up one hour before you need to leave and take a shower. ◦Wear comfortable and casual clothing, but avoid being too comfortable. Dress in layers as the temperature inside the test room may vary. ◦Eat a healthy, substantial breakfast. As a rule, protein is better than sugar. Avoid heavy foods (such as omelets) that could cause indigestion. ◦Know which building and parking lot to use. Plan to arrive by 7:45am so you don’t feel rushed.

7 WHAT TO BRING Pencils Calculator Identification and Registration Snack and Drink Wrist Watch Tissues (for winter test dates)

8 GENERAL TEST-TAKING TIPS Pace Yourself (Announcements only made when 5 minutes/1 minute remain) Read directions before test date Read questions carefully (annotate) Answer easy questions first Answer EVERY question (no penalty for guessing) Be precise in marking answer and don’t make notes on answer sheet Don’t panic! Work the entire time.

9 ENGLISH TEST PREP 75 QUESTIONS/45 MINUTES (9 minutes per passage) Usage/Mechanics: 40 Questions Punctuation Grammar and Usage Sentence Structure Rhetorical Skills: 35 Questions Strategy Organization Style

10 ENGLISH TIPS Read the entire passage first (roughly 1.5 minutes). Focus on grammar and revision skills, not comprehension. Answer diction and grammar questions first; they are usually the easiest to answer quickly. Listen for errors as you read the answer choices. You can often hear an error as you say a sentence in your head. Read ALL answers carefully; answers often look similar, sometimes differing only by a comma. “NO CHANGE” is the correct choice about 25% of the time.

11 MATH TEST PREP 60 QUESTIONS/60 MINUTES (1 question per minute) Pre-Algebra/Elementary Algebra 24 Questions Intermediate Algebra/Coordinate Geometry 18 Questions Plane Geometry/Trigonometry 18 Questions

12 MATH TIPS Draw a picture if one is not provided. Figures given are not drawn to scale, so mark them with given measures or symbols. Know the following translations: of means multiply and per means divide. Know the area and perimeter formulas for triangles, rectangles, and circles, and how to find the volume and surface area of a box. If a problem is given in terms of fractions, decimals, or percents, consider using an alternate form to find the answer.

13 MATH TIPS If the question and/or answer set are given in terms of variables only, substitute simple numbers to help determine the answer. Most answers are listed from least to greatest, so you can use a technique called backsolving to find the correct answer. Do not overuse your calculator! The test is written so that every problem can be solved without a calculator. Set up the problem in your test booklet first and take a moment to consider what a reasonable answer would be before using the calculator.

14 READING TEST PREP 40 QUESTIONS/35 MINUTES (9 minutes per passage) Prose Fiction: 10 Questions Social Studies: 10 Questions Humanities: 10 Questions Natural Sciences: 10 Questions

15 READING TIPS Read the passage actively (3 minutes); underline or circle any key points. Read with awareness of the author’s goal, tone, and theme. If a question refers to a specific line of the passage, read one line above and below the indicated line to better understand the context. Save difficult questions (such as inferring) for last and answer easier questions (such as vocabulary) first. Note: It is best to finish one passage completely before going on to the next.

16 SCIENCE TEST PREP 40 QUESTIONS/35 MINUTES (5 minutes per passage) Data Representation: 15 questions Research Summaries: 18 questions Conflicting Viewpoints: 7 questions

17 SCIENCE TIPS If a passage seems difficult, skip it; data representation passages are often the easiest. When reading passages, aim at a general understanding on the first reading and do not dwell on a specific aspect of data. If the passage contains conflicting viewpoints, consider similarities and differences between the scientists’ arguments. When reading tables and charts, focus on labels, trends in data, and maximum or minimum values. Look for connections between multiple data representations.

18 WRITING TEST PREP 1 PROMPT/30 MINUTES The test consists of one writing prompt that will define an issue and describe two points of view on that issue. Students may adopt either of the perspectives described in the prompt, or may present a third point of view on the issue. Scores will not be affected by the point of view taken on the issue.

19 WRITING TIPS Do some planning (in your Writing Test booklet) before writing the essay. At the beginning of your essay, explain your point of view in a clear and logical way. Discuss the issue in a broader context or evaluate the implications or complications of the issue. Address what others might say to refute your point of view and present a counter-argument. Use specific examples. Vary the structure of your sentences. Use transitional words and phrases. End with a strong conclusion that summarizes or reinforces your position. If time remains, check your work for spelling and grammatical errors.

20 CONCLUSION Questions? Reminders of upcoming test dates and registration deadlines Information requests ◦ ◦ ◦ GO ACE THE ACT ® !

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