Committing to an ACT test date can be a little scary. Now that you know when your test is, it’s time to make those study schedules, get your practice testing going, and start strategizing for the exam itself. It is, however, a necessary part of life if you’re applying to colleges that accept the ACT! So how do you make it through ACT test registration?
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 taking a test! But those proctors, test booklets, and bubble sheets all cost money (unless you’re lucky enough to live in one of the states that provides the ACT for free). You (or your parents) need a credit card to pay $29, or $43 if you’re taking the optional writing test.
Another thing you’ll need 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, we have all the information you need to choose a ACT test date. And ACT has a convenient list of 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.
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 (and to see your scores online).
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 actually 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, registering for the ACT should take less than an hour.
Happy registering, and good luck on the ACT!
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About Thomas Broderick
Thomas spent four years teaching high school English, social studies, and ACT preparation in Middle Tennessee. Now living in Northern California, he is excited to share his knowledge and experience with Magoosh's readers. In his spare time Thomas enjoys writing short fiction and hiking in the Sonoma foothills.
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