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How to Sign Up for the ACT

Instructor: Andrea Losa
Registration for the ACT can be completed through several methods. Keep reading to explore your options and learn what's required to sign up online, by mail, or over the phone.

Register for the ACT Online

If you have Internet access, you can sign up for the ACT after creating an online account on the official ACT website. Once you've entered your contact information, you'll be able to:

  • Locate a testing center
  • Choose one of six annual test dates
  • Sign up for the writing test (optional)
  • Designate score recipients
  • Upload a digital photo of yourself for identification purposes
  • Submit payment

In addition to registering, you can use your online account to:

  • Make changes to your test date, testing options, or test location for an added fee
  • Print your admission ticket for test day

Registration for Students Seeking Accommodations

Online registration is available for students taking the ACT at a test center who are seeking either extended time testing accommodations or accommodations with the regular test time. Students seeking these accommodations must complete additional steps, such as submitting the Request for ACT Extended Time National Testing or Request for ACT National Standard Time with Accommodations and a copy of the admission ticket by mail.

Students needing special testing accommodations when taking the test at school cannot register online. Instead, a guidance counselor fills out and sends in the Request for ACT Special Testing.

Register by Mail

You can sign up for the ACT through the mail once you've received the mail-in registration packet, which can be obtained by submitting a request on the official ACT website. You can also check with your guidance counselor and see if he or she has one of those packets for you. If you register by mail, however, you will still need Internet access to:

  • Look up codes for testing centers
  • Select the schools receiving your score report

Mail registration is mandatory for students who are under 13 and for those who are not able to use a credit card.

Register by Phone

Students who have previously signed up for the ACT can re-register over the phone for an additional fee. The number you will need to call is 319-337-1270. This service is available Monday through Friday, from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. central time.

If you plan to re-register by phone, you will need to be prepared to give the following information when you call:

  • Your ACT ID (found on your score report)
  • The test option, date and center that you prefer
  • Info from a valid credit card

Preparing for the ACT

After you sign up for the ACT, you'll want to make sure to prepare for the test since many colleges use this score as part of their admissions process. The ACT includes multiple-choice questions in four subject areas (English, math, science and reading). There is also an optional writing test. Study.com offers a comprehensive ACT Prep Study Guide that contains several fun, engaging videos led by expert instructors that you can use to prepare for this exam.

The short videos cover multiple topics in each subject area and include quizzes to test your comprehension. The lessons can be accessed at any time from a computer or mobile device. The website keeps track of your progress, so you'll know how many quizzes you've aced.

See a general overview of the ACT, along with overviews of each section through these chapters:

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