ACT Tips and Prep Powerpoint 2011

Report
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ACT
PREPARATION
AND TIPS
Seth Keene
Stacey Schultz

What is the “required” score for admission
to your 1st choice school?

Are you applying for scholarships with
ACT score requirements?

In addition to a composite score goal, set
a goal for each test and sub-score.

Set the bar high, but make it reachable!
GOAL SETTING
◦ 1st: April/June of Junior Year
◦ 2nd: September/October of Senior Year
◦ 3rd: December/February of Senior Year
TEST DATES
#1 4+ Years of Math, Science, English
 #2 ACT Preparation Course
 #3 Practice Workbook/On-line Resources
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Ideal Preparation Plan:
◦ 10% Understanding Test
◦ 80% Reviewing Skills
◦ 10% Test-taking Strategies
TEST PREPARATION
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Online/Self-Paced Courses:
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Practice Tests
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Practice Books

Classroom Review Courses
◦ ACT Online Prep ($19.95 for 1 year)
◦ SD MyLife and My Student Edge (FREE)
◦ DSTEP, ASVAB, PSAT, SD Test-Outs
◦ Preparing for the ACT (Archived editions online)
◦ The Real ACT Prep Guide ($30.95)
◦ Sylvan Learning Center
◦ Keene Academy
PREPARATION RESOURCES

Friday Night:

Saturday Morning:
◦ Eat a good meal rich in carbohydrates (such as pasta) at
a reasonable hour. Be in bed by 11pm.
◦ Set two alarms or ask family and friends to ensure you
wake up.
◦ Wake up one hour before you need to leave and take a
shower.
◦ Wear comfortable and casual clothing, but avoid being
too comfortable. Dress in layers as the temperature
inside the test room may vary.
◦ Eat a healthy, substantial breakfast. As a rule, protein is
better than sugar. Avoid heavy foods (such as omelets)
that could cause indigestion.
◦ Know which building and parking lot to use. Plan to
arrive by 7:45am so you don’t feel rushed.
TEST DAY TIPS
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Pencils

Calculator

Identification and Registration
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Snack and Drink
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Wrist Watch
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Tissues (for winter test dates)
WHAT TO BRING
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Pace Yourself (Announcements only made
when 5 minutes/1 minute remain)
Read directions before test date
Read questions carefully (annotate)
Answer easy questions first
Answer EVERY question (no penalty for
guessing)
Be precise in marking answer and don’t
make notes on answer sheet
Don’t panic! Work the entire time.
GENERAL TEST-TAKING TIPS
75 QUESTIONS/45 MINUTES
(9 minutes per passage)

Usage/Mechanics: 40 Questions
Punctuation
Grammar and Usage
Sentence Structure

Rhetorical Skills: 35 Questions
Strategy
Organization
Style
ENGLISH TEST PREP
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Read the entire passage first (roughly 1.5
minutes). Focus on grammar and revision
skills, not comprehension.
Answer diction and grammar questions first;
they are usually the easiest to answer
quickly.
Listen for errors as you read the answer
choices. You can often hear an error as you
say a sentence in your head.
Read ALL answers carefully; answers often
look similar, sometimes differing only by a
comma.
“NO CHANGE” is the correct choice about
25% of the time.
ENGLISH TIPS
60 QUESTIONS/60 MINUTES
(1 question per minute)

Pre-Algebra/Elementary Algebra
24 Questions

Intermediate Algebra/Coordinate Geometry
18 Questions

Plane Geometry/Trigonometry
18 Questions
MATH TEST PREP
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Draw a picture if one is not provided. Figures
given are not drawn to scale, so mark them
with given measures or symbols.
Know the following translations: of means
multiply and per means divide.
Know the area and perimeter formulas for
triangles, rectangles, and circles, and how to
find the volume and surface area of a box.
If a problem is given in terms of fractions,
decimals, or percents, consider using an
alternate form to find the answer.
MATH TIPS
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If the question and/or answer set are given
in terms of variables only, substitute simple
numbers to help determine the answer.
Most answers are listed from least to
greatest, so you can use a technique called
backsolving to find the correct answer.
Do not overuse your calculator! The test is
written so that every problem can be solved
without a calculator. Set up the problem in
your test booklet first and take a moment to
consider what a reasonable answer would be
before using the calculator.
MATH TIPS
40 QUESTIONS/35 MINUTES
(9 minutes per passage)

Prose Fiction: 10 Questions

Social Studies: 10 Questions

Humanities: 10 Questions
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Natural Sciences: 10 Questions
READING TEST PREP
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Read the passage actively (3 minutes);
underline or circle any key points. Read with
awareness of the author’s goal, tone, and
theme.
If a question refers to a specific line of the
passage, read one line above and below the
indicated line to better understand the
context.
Save difficult questions (such as inferring) for
last and answer easier questions (such as
vocabulary) first. Note: It is best to finish
one passage completely before going on to
the next.
READING TIPS
40 QUESTIONS/35 MINUTES
(5 minutes per passage)
 Data
Representation: 15 questions
 Research
Summaries: 18 questions
 Conflicting
Viewpoints: 7 questions
SCIENCE TEST PREP

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If a passage seems difficult, skip it; data
representation passages are often the
easiest.
When reading passages, aim at a general
understanding on the first reading and do not
dwell on a specific aspect of data. If the
passage contains conflicting viewpoints,
consider similarities and differences between
the scientists’ arguments.
When reading tables and charts, focus on
labels, trends in data, and maximum or
minimum values. Look for connections
between multiple data representations.
SCIENCE TIPS
1 PROMPT/30 MINUTES
The test consists of one writing prompt
that will define an issue and describe two
points of view on that issue.
 Students may adopt either of the
perspectives described in the prompt, or
may present a third point of view on the
issue.
 Scores will not be affected by the point of
view taken on the issue.
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WRITING TEST PREP
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Do some planning (in your Writing Test booklet)
before writing the essay.
At the beginning of your essay, explain your point of
view in a clear and logical way.
Discuss the issue in a broader context or evaluate the
implications or complications of the issue.
Address what others might say to refute your point of
view and present a counter-argument.
Use specific examples.
Vary the structure of your sentences.
Use transitional words and phrases.
End with a strong conclusion that summarizes or
reinforces your position.
If time remains, check your work for spelling and
grammatical errors.
WRITING TIPS
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Questions?

Reminders of upcoming test dates and
registration deadlines

Information requests
◦ [email protected][email protected]
◦ www.raiderscorner.com

GO ACE THE ACT®!
CONCLUSION

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