BY JULIA SAFRIN
It’s not a secret that junior year of high school can be stressful, especially when students have to start preparing for and taking college entrance exams like the SAT and ACT. If students don’t score as highly as they would like the first time they take a standardized test, they are able to take it again in their entirety.
However, the ACT’s testing policy is about to change in the fall of 2020. In an attempt to raise scores, the ACT will allow students to retake only one section of the test instead of having to sit through the entire three hours to try to improve their scores.
“I like this [change]. I think it will help students improve their scores because they won’t have to sit through a whole test to get to the section they need to work on,” senior Cassidy Sutton said. “Usually when I take these tests, by the end of it I’m exhausted and can barely concentrate so it would be nice to just focus on one specific section. This also makes it easier to study because you can work on more individualized concepts to improve a certain section rather than stressing about everything.”
The ACT released the news of these changes on Tuesday, October 8. The reason for these changes is to better cater to students’ needs to reach success and to improve their testing experience.
“Students come first at ACT, and these groundbreaking new options will directly benefit them, providing more choices, an improved testing experience and a better opportunity to showcase their readiness and reach their maximum potential,” ACT chief commercial officer Suzana Delanghe said.
“Usually when I take these tests, by the end of it I’m exhausted and can barely concentrate so it would be nice to just focus on one specific section.”
A fee will still be charged to retake a section of the ACT, but it will be less than the $52 for the ACT without the writing and the $63 with the writing.
The new section retake policy isn’t the only change being made to the ACT. It was also announced that students who wish to receive faster score reports can opt to take the ACT online rather than with the traditional paper booklet. By opting to take the ACT online, students will be able to receive their scores within two days compared to the two weeks it normally takes for paper-based ACT scores to come out. However, testing on a computer can be a disadvantage for some students.
“I would not [take the test online] because I focus a lot better on a real test and I would be too distracted taking a test on a computer,” senior Justin Ryan said.
Additionally, the ACT will be releasing the “superscore” of students who have taken the test multiple times. Superscore is a score formed by the best section scores students received throughout all their attempts. Currently, students have to calculate their superscore themselves.
As the world of standardized testing continues to evolve, the ACT is working towards providing students with a better test-taking experience to aid them in their success.
Photo by Sydney Katz