After standing in a long line for what seems like hours, you’ve made it to the front. A scary, but bored looking man says, “Papers, please.” You hand over your ID and ticket. The man scans your documents and face. ‘I know what you’re up to,’ his features seem to say before hands back your property. He lets you pass. You made it!
No, you didn’t just escape a ruthless dictatorship. You were just admitted into an ACT testing center!
There’s no need to fear. Registering for the ACT is a straightforward process, easy if you know what you’re doing and have everything you need. With that said, let’s get down to business.
What you Need to Register
ACT’s going to need to know the usual: your name, address, birthday, etc. But most importantly, you’re going to need to have one of these babies available:
That’s right, you have to pay for the privilege of sitting in a room for nearly four hours and take a test! But those proctors, test booklets, and bubble sheets all cost money. You (or most likely your parents) need a credit card to pay $29, or $43 if you’re taking the optional writing test.
Another thing is a recent photograph. A simple head shot will do. If you don’t have your own smartphone, have a friend take a picture of you and email it to you. Same rules as the DMV apply: no hats or sunglasses, please.
Just as important, you need to know when and where you’re taking the ACT before you register. Fortunately, ACT has a convenient list of test dates and locations ready for you:
If you type in your state and city, ACT will provide you options for the current year. Once you’ve made your choice, write down your date and ‘center code,’ a six digit number. You will need to provide these two pieces of information to ACT when you register.
Registering for the ACT
Here’s your first stop:
If this is your first time taking the ACT, you’ll need to set up your account. Make sure to write down your login and password somewhere safe. You’ll need this information later if you decide to retake the ACT.
After entering all your personal information, test date, center code, and payment information, make sure to review everything before hitting ‘submit.’
After that the process is complete. See, wasn’t that easy?
So What Happens Now?
Besides taking the ACT? Well, the most important thing is now you have your own personal account with ACT. With it you can do the following:
- Register to retake the ACT.
- Learn about test prep.
- Get your scores.
- Plan for college.
- Learn about financial aid.
- And so much more!
Seriously, ACT provides some good resources (they make the test, after all), so spend a little time exploring your account after you register.
Another thing you don’t want to forget is your ACT admission ticket. That’s right, just like getting on an airplane or going to the movies, ACT won’t let you in without a ticket. As long as you have your login info, you can print this out from any computer connected to the internet. Just don’t lose it before test day!
If you have everything you need ready when you sit down to register, the process should take less than an hour. Getting ready for the ACT, though, that’s going to take quite a few hours.
Happy registering, and good luck on the ACT!