Phew! Did You Just Take the ACT?
The results should be available in about two weeks, and score reports should be available in 3 to 8 weeks. If you took the writing test, you should get the results within 5 to 8 weeks. For information “straight from the horse’s mouth,” go to http://www.actstudent.org/scores/
If you’re looking to improve your ACT scores for next time, you should probably “get right back on the horse” and start studying again. Luckily, if you’re taking the SAT on October 3, the material you study for that, especially the math, should “carry over” quite well to your next ACT. Please make sure you know all the material in the “Math Facts” box at the beginning of each SAT math section – you really DON’T want to have to refer to that little box if you don’t have to do it – flipping through pages and figuring out what the SAT people’s notation means will waste time you really can’t spare, and memorizing the information will help you on the ACT, where they don’t give you the “basic” information contained in that section. See my previous blog entries on the math basics for further details.
Better yet, read your math texts (your SAT and ACT review books, any math texts or review books you might have on algebra or geometry) and look online (e.g., www.purplemath.com ) to understand the underlying principles completely. I find that once I understand the principles, I can’t really forget an important formula, since I can always derive the formula from other formulas and principles. For example, if you understand the Pythagorean Theorem, you can’t forget the formula for the distance between two Cartesian coordinate points, since it’s just the Cartesian expression of the Pythagorean Theorem and are just expressions of the two legs of the right triangle formed by differences in x and y values of the two points and the straight line between the two that forms the hypotenuse (assuming the two points don’t have the same x or y values, in which case their difference is just the distance along a straight line parallel to the x or y axis)…
You can easily do the same with the formula for the Cartesian coordinates of all points on a circle (just substitute the radius of the circle in for d, and the coordinates of the center of the circle (h,k) for x1 and y1 See, for example, http://www.regentsprep.org/regents/math/algtrig/atc1/circlelesson.htm .
One difference between SAT and ACT math is that trigonometry is on the ACT – make sure you understand what affects the period and amplitude of a trigonometric function, the trig identities, and how to determine the sine, cosine and tangent of a given angle of a triangle. Many people use SOH CAH TOA as a mnemonic, but I prefer “Oscar Has A Headache Over Algebra.” Just write SIN, then COS under that, then TAN under that, then write O/H next to SIN, then A/H next to COS and O/A next to TAN.”
For the verbal/English/Writing parts: Practice your critical reading under timed conditions, and review your grammar and vocabulary for the SAT, and it will go a long way in helping you with the ACT as well. I strongly suggest the Barron’s SAT and Barron’s ACT review books for both. The Barron’s ACT problems are actually harder than most actual ACTs, but that will work to your advantage.
Also, practice writing essays where you take a stand on issues, such as current events. Take a look at any newspaper’s editorial page or online forum. Basically it’s just “What is the issue?” “What do you think about it?” “What evidence do you have to support your opinion?” Don’t be intimidated by the last part; if you have an opinion, you must have a reason WHY you have that opinion. Just go from there. See my previous blog posts on how to write essays for the SAT and ACT.
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Author: John Linneball Who did you think? ;-)
I'm the proprietor and only tutor for this business; that's why I named it after me.