ACT Training Hub

ACT Training Hub

Whether you’re brand new to ACT, or want to learn advanced strategies, this is your hub for ACT knowledge and mastery.

The Ultimate Guide: All 5 ACT Sections Explained

In this article, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive guide of all ACT sections. Further, we’ll dive deep into each section. Finally, we’ll talk about which ACT sections—and scores—are most significant for you.

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Conflicting Viewpoints Passages

Every ACT science section contains one passage that looks more like a critical reading passage than a science passage. These are called conflicting viewpoint passages and require a different approach from those of other science questions.

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Effective Writing Toolkit

We have discussed how to dissect the author’s essay and how to leverage it to write a perfect ACT essay. Now, it’s the time to help you write the essay better using varied sentence structures and correct grammar usage.

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Wrong Answer Types

You are fully capable of getting a perfect ACT science score. The only difference between a 36 and whatever you’re scoring is a collection of small errors.

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The ACT Essay - An Introduction

The ACT essay is optional. You are given 40 minutes to write the essay. It is graded out of 12 points. Your score will show up next to your “36” score, but it won’t actually affect it in any way.

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ACT Essay Template

The ACT essay is one of the easiest component of the ACT that a student can master. This chapter will introduce a repeatable framework that will make essay writing easy

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The Example Bank

The ACT essay heavily depends on examples to support your point. Here we give you a ready set of examples that you can use to support your points in your ACT Essay.

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Sample ACT Essays

By know, you know that the ACT essay follows a predictable format, which means you can practice and prepare beforehand. Take a look at a sample ACT essay below and learn key steps and strategies to penning a high-scoring essay.

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The Basics of ACT Science

The ACT Science section just tests your ability to understand what is important, to know what is not important, to move quickly and efficiently between questions, and to dismiss fatigue (it is the last section after all!).

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Speed is Everything

In the ACT science section, timing is everything and therefore we need to figure out the fastest and the easiest way to find an answer.

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Data Representation Passages

Majority of the questions on the ACT Science section will just ask you to evaluate visuals and just relay information. To answer these questions, you need to read the graphs, tables, and/or scatterplots.

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Intepreting Experiments Passages

Interpreting Experiments questions will give one interpretation of part of the passage and ask you whether that interpretation is true or not, using the data from the experiment.

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Directional Clues

Directional cues are the key to answering almost every single question correctly on the ACT science section. Directional cues are the comparative words in any questions or answer choice that allow you to compare one option to another.

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Outside Knowledge

The ACT Science test may contain 1-2 questions based on outside knowledge. Often, that is the difference between a 32 and a 35 on the Science section!

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Intro to ACT Reading

The SAT Reading Test is tough for a lot of students, and embodies a central complaint many people have about this test: How can you pick just one right answer to a question about a passage?

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How to Approach an ACT Passage

Reading comprehension is question driven. To be successful, you need to be an active reader – quickly consuming a passage’s main ideas and then saving time to locate relevant information within the passage to answer detail-oriented test questions.

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ACT Reading Test Strategies

The single most important strategy to get the ACT Reading questions correct is to plagirize the answers from the passages itself

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Main Idea Questions

If there is one question you are certain to see on the ACT, it is about the main idea of a passage. The main idea is nothing but the primary purpose of the passage.

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Literal Translation Questions

Literal translation questions ask about the details of a passage. In contrast to your approach to general questions, to master literal translation problems, you will need to re-read and grasp details in the passage.

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Vocabulary In Context Questions

Vocabulary-in-context questions are usually among the most straightforward questions on the Reading Test, as well as some of the least time-consuming.

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Inference Questions

Inference questions tend to be among the most challenging types of Reading Comprehension questions on the SAT. Instead of testing your understanding of what is in the text, inference questions test your understanding of what isn’t in the text.

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Wrong Answer Choices

The SAT test writers are amazingly skilled at writing tempting wrong answers, so it’s worth taking some time to understand the techniques they use to avoid falling for their traps.

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About ACT Math

The ACT Math Test contains one 60-minute section with 60 questions, and calculators are allowed on the ACT Math Test. If you excel in math, you will find the Math Test the most straightforward section of the ACT.

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Circles and Conics

Circles and Conics questions on the ACT are straightforward and formula driven. The following chapters will list all the formulas you need to know to answer the circle questions on the ACT Math section.

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Hard ACT Questions

In every section on the ACT, there are some questions that are more difficult than the others. Science is no different. Each of the ACT Science passage tends to have 1-2 hard questions that can appear at any point in the passage.

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ACT Calculator Usage

You’re allowed to use a calculator on Section 4 of the SAT, but remember to use it as a tool, not as a crutch.

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ACT Math Strategies

Some strategies are so powerful that they can singlehandedly increase your SAT Math Test score by more than 100 points. At AP Guru, we absolutely recommend students use these three strategies time and again.

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Number Properties

Math fundamentals deal with number properties, their classifications and basic operations on numbers.

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Percentage and Ratios

For some reason, the SAT is absolutely obsessed with percentage problems, and as a result, many students have trouble. The following set of formulas will help eradicate your trouble once and for all.

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Inequalities

The beauty of inequalities on the SAT is that they allow you to do all of the same things that you can with equations:

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Linear Equations

Linear equations are equations in which all variables have an exponent of 1 and whose graph is a line.

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Polynomials

A polynomial is an algebraic expression comprised of more than two terms, usually of like bases and different powers. Polynomials frequently include integer terms as well.

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Miscellaneous Algebra

There are a few additional algebra topics often tested on the SAT. Expect each of the following to show up at least once on each SAT Math Test.

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Lines and Angles

There are only a couple of Lines and Angles questions tested on the ACT Math section. The questions are usually easy and should not pose a challenge to you.

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Triangles

The ACT is absolutely obsessed with triangle-based problems, and as a result, the ACT Math section includes many questions on the ACT Math section. The following set of formulas will help eradicate your trouble once and for all.

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Trigonometry

The word TRIGONOMETRY is Greek; tri means three, gon means angle and meter means to measure. Combining all these three words, we get, “three angle measure”. The logic behind this is that trigonometry involves the measurements inside a triangle, which has three angles.

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Polygons

The polygons tested on the ACT are usually the following quadrilaterals: trapezoids, parallelograms, and special parallelograms, such as rhombuses, rectangles, and squares.

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Solid Geometry

SOLID GEOMETRY questions on the ACT Math section are some of the hardest questions you will see on the ACT Math section.

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Co-ordinate Geometry

COORDINATE GEOMETRY is the study of geometry on a plane using a coordinate system. This plane is called a COORDINATE PLANE, which has scales of measurement along the x and y-axes.

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Absolute Value

The Absolute Value of a number is its distance from zero (on the number line). Thus, an absolute value is always positive. We indicate absolute value by putting two bars around the number.

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Functions

Students struggle with function based questions on the ACT. This chapter will give you all the information and solved examples you need to get the function questions correct

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Quadratics

The term quadratic comes from the Latin word quadratus meaning square because the variable gets squared (e.g., \(x^{2}\) ). It is also called an equation of degree 2 because of the 2 superscripts on the x.

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Graphing Functions

A TRANSFORMATION is a change of position or size of a figure. When we transform a figure, we create a new figure that is related to the original.

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Complex Numbers

There are usually 1-2 questions on complex numbers on every ACT Test. If you know what complex numbers are, these questions are pretty straightforward.

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Word Problems

About 35% of your total SAT Math Test will be made up of word problems. Though the actual math topics can vary, it is important to develop a consistent process for answering them.

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Probability

PROBABILITY is the likelihood that something will happen. It is a number between 0 and 1 and can be written as a percent. When you asked about something's probability, you are asking, "How likely is it?" A larger number means there is a greater likelihood that the event will happen.

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Statistics

It's important to understand the graphs and charts often used in statistics based questions before we explain the core concepts tested on the SAT Math section.

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Miscellaneous Topics

The ACT will probably contain two to three questions on each ACT test from a collection of additional topics. Even though none of the topics will not appear more than once on a test,collectively they could make a significant different to your ACT Math score.

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Pronouns

A pronoun can often be used as a substitute for a noun in a sentence. Anytime a pronoun is used in a passage, that pronoun must have a clear antecedent; that is, it must directly connect to a noun or pronoun that was mentioned before it.

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Subject Verb Agreement

The ACT English section usually tests 4-5 questions on subject-verb agreement on every test. Here we tell you all you need to know about subject-verb agreements on the ACT.

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Verbs

The SAT Writing and Language Test repeatedly tests the proper usage of verb tenses. Knowing when to use different verb tenses and forms will be extremely beneficial to you on this part of the test.

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Strategies for SAT Writing Section

The SAT Writing and Language Test is a passage-based test. There are four multi-paragraph passages and 44 questions to go with them. The makers of the SAT break this test down into two main sections: Usage and Mechanics and Rhetorical Skills.

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Sentence Structures

Though sentence structures are rarely tested on the SAT, you will need to understand them to accurately answer comma-based questions.

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Concision and Word Choice

Concision works on one very basic principle: it is incorrect to use 10 words to express an idea you could express using 5.

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Command of Evidence

Command of Evidence questions on the SAT asks you to determine how the writer of the passage can best achieve a particular outcome or purpose.

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Organization and Structure

These questions ask you to identify whether a particular sentence is correctly placed within a paragraph, or whether a particular paragraph is correctly placed within a passage.

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Add or Delete Questions

Add or delete questions ask whether you should add or delete a sentence within a passage. Most questions will therefore require you to consider the context of the surrounding sentences and/or paragraphs.

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Transitions

Transitions are one of the most common and trickiest topics tested on the SAT Writing + Langauge and Language Test.

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Modifiers

Modifiers are words, phrases or clauses used to describe something in a sentence. They are often tested on the SAT in the form of comma usage.

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Semicolons, Colons, Dashes, & Apostrophes

Even though comma usage is the most prominent punctuation rule tested on the ACT, other punctuation such as semicolons, colons, dashes, and apostrophes are frequently tested as well.

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Comma Usage

The comma is widely used in writing and is the most commonly tested concept on the SAT Writing and Language Test. Therefore, it’s extremely important to understand how to correctly use commas and when to avoid them.

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Miscellaneous Grammar

There are many pesky little grammar rules that you’ll be tested on as part of the SAT. Therefore, it’s important to not just know these grammar rules, but also how test questions are structured .

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Parallelism

Parallelism is a very strange concept. Unlike commas, semicolons, pronouns, tenses, etc., parallelism isn’t applied to just a single area of grammar – it spans all aspects of the English language.

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ACT English: Grammar

Learn the 50+ grammar rules that the ACT tests on. This section covers both the basics, like punctuations and verb tenses and the advanced strategies required to answer even the hardest questions.

ACT English: Rhetorics

Learn specific strategies that you can use to answer all the rhetorical questions that are asked on the ACT English section.

ACT Reading

Learn concepts and strategies to ensure that you not only know how to approach an ACT reading passage but also attack all the 6 question types tested on the ACT Reading Test.

ACT Math Basics

Learn the basics of ACT Math all in one place, including calculator usage, avoiding silly mistakes, number properties, and more.

ACT Math Algebra and Functions

Learn step-by-step methods that will directly produce answers to algebra and function questions. This section covers concepts and techniques to help you with some of the hardest concepts tested on the ACT like linear equations, quadratic expressions, and graphing functions.

ACT Math Geometry

Learn how to answer ACT geometry questions like a pro. See exactly how to answer geometry, coordinate plane and trigonometry based-questions.

ACT Science

Learn all about how to approach the Science section, the different passage types, and the question types that appear on the ACT Science test.

ACT Math Problem Solving

Learn all about complex numbers word problems, probability, and statistics. Includes lots of pro tips to help you achieve mastery on each concept.

ACT Writing

Learn the basics of ACT writing section here. This section covers the author's thesis, the different elements, a writing template, and more