Three Important ACT Test Taking Tips

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The ACT is one of the most popular college entrance exams around. Just this year, more than half of all high school graduates (57%) took the ACT. According to the test’s official website, the average composite score was a 21 out of 36, which means that in order to stand out even a little, students had to score a 22 or higher.

Ask any of these high schoolers, and they’ll tell you that that is not an easy feat. Taking such a high stakes test is easier said than done, no matter how much they might have poured over their ACT test prep books, no matter how many ACT test prep courses they might have taken, no matter how hard they tried to study for ACT exams.

When taking the ACT, students need to conquer their fears, anxieties, and stress in order to do well. To help students do that, here are a few studying tips for exams.

Read Carefully, but Don’t Doubt Yourself.

Yes, ACT study questions are hard, and quite possibly tricky. Students need to read all of them carefully to make sure they understand what these ACT study questions are asking. However, this doesn’t mean they have to ask themselves, “is this what the question is really asking?” because that will only confuse them. Such self-doubt will eat up time, and may even cause students to answer the ACT study questions incorrectly. If they don’t understand some of them, it’s best to just skip them, and return to the tricky ACT study questions at the end.

Take Educated Guesses.

On the harder parts, it’s best to make educated guesses. Eliminate as many incorrect answers as possible, and then take a stab. Scores are based on the number of ACT study questions answered correctly — not the amount of ACT study questions answered incorrectly. This means that there’s no penalty for guessing, but there is for leaving it blank. Students miss 100% of the ACT study questions they don’t answer, after all.

When Checking Answers, Don’t Second Guess.

Yes, students should always check over their answers if they have enough time to, but that doesn’t mean they need to go and second guess themselves. Thinking too hard about certain ACT study questions may cause them to change their answer from the correct one to an incorrect one. If a student isn’t sure whether or not an answer is correct, it’s best to stick with the first guess.

Taking the ACT is hard, but a student’s anxiety can make it even harder. In order to do well, high schoolers need to have confidence in themselves, and their test taking abilities. If you have any questions about taking the ACT, feel free to ask in the comments. Find out more here.

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