The ACT offers the ACT test seven times throughout the year. So far, they’ve released four 2020 ACT test dates.
We recommend picking a test date based on your estimated college application deadlines and how many times you plan to take the test. On average, students take the ACT two to three times to achieve their goal score, so plan accordingly! If you’re in the spring semester of your junior year, getting test dates on the calendar for the early spring and summer (and the fall, if needed) is a high priority for you.
Register for the ACT by visiting the ACT’s website and registering online. They say this takes about 40 minutes to complete. To register, you’ll need:
- Your high school course details
- Your high school’s code
- A headshot photo
- A credit card or other payment method in order to register.
Review the ACT website for a full list of information you’ll need to register for the ACT.
2020 ACT Test Dates
|ACT Test Date||Registration Deadline||Late Registration (fee required)|
|February 8, 2020||January 10, 2020||January 11-17, 2020|
|April 4, 2020||February 28, 2020||February 29-March 13, 2020|
|June 13, 2020||May 8, 2020||May 9-22, 2020|
|July 18, 2020*||June 19, 2020||June 20-26, 2020|
* No testing centers are scheduled in New York for the July test date
In the past, the ACT has also offered tests in September, October, and December. We’ll update this post as those dates are announced.
ACT Study Schedules
Once you register for the ACT, it’s time to buckle down and study. In order to study effectively for the ACT, you need an ACT study schedule. A schedule ensures you’ll study for every section of the test with time left over for practice tests and reviewing difficult concepts. It helps you stay on track with your goals and, if well-implemented, should lead to an increase in your ACT score!
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What is the Ideal Study Schedule?
Below are sample study schedules based on how much time you have to prepare: two months, three months, or four months. In our opinion, three months is the right amount of time to study for your first ACT. Three months gives you enough time to cover all the necessary material without totally frying your brain.
In our opinion, three months is the right amount of time to study for your first ACT. Three months gives you enough time to cover all the necessary material without totally frying your brain.
Planning to study for about three months also accounts for the fact that no one sticks to their schedule despite their best efforts. You are constantly competing with school work and you need to build in some time to adjust here and there. If you have three months to study, that builds in a little wiggle room to skip a few days here and there.
What if I Plan to Take the ACT Twice?
As we said earlier, many students take the ACT at least twice and studies have shown that around 57% of students’ scores increase the second time they take the test! We recommend that students take the ACT at least twice for this reason.
It’s best practice to take your second ACT on the next available test date so you stay fresh. ACT tests are usually about eight weeks apart, which is plenty of time to hone in on and fix mistakes you made on your first test.
Creating a Second ACT Study Schedule
Studying for your second ACT test is your chance to focus on the areas of the test that really trip you up.
You’ll usually get your scores from the first test back after two weeks. Take a break the week after the test (you’ve earned it!) and then use the week before you get your score report back to think about how the first ACT test went; Did you run out of time? Did you struggle with a particular section, or with certain kinds of questions? What will you do differently when you take the test again?
Think about how the first ACT test went; Did you run out of time? Did you struggle with a particular section, or with certain kinds of questions? What will you do differently when you take the test again?
Once you get your score report, you can begin some focused studying for your second ACT test. Use the “Detailed Results” section of the report to figure out the kinds of questions you missed. Then, take the next six weeks before your test to study those specific content areas you struggled in on your first test.
Download the Free ACT Study Schedules
Download the Free ACT Study Schedules! The schedules below are based on our free ACT course. Between the free course, test tips on this blog, and the study schedule below, you’ll have everything you need to study for the ACT and get a great score.