Last Updated: February 02, 2021

Preparing for ACT in a Month

Is the ACT test approaching and is there just one month left to prepare? Through this article, candidates will be able to find guidance that can help them in figuring out the workability of a one-month plan, the steps to undertake before the actual preparation, and how, indeed, one can act smart to crack the ACT. Read ahead to find the best strategies and tips that can relieve anxiety and prepare candidates for ACT in over a month.

Can One Prepare for ACT in a Month?

When it is said that the ACT test can be prepared for in a month, the statement banks on the required amount of effort that has to be put in by the candidate. ACT preparation is done by students through both offline tutoring and online ACT prep courses. But the test can also be prepared for through self-tutoring though this requires a large amount of self-discipline.

The subjects and syllabus for the test have been derived from high school syllabi and hence if one has been a diligent student, all they will have to do as prep would be to brush up on information that they have already studied. The prep then focuses on 3 key aspects which are relearning key concepts, understanding the test pattern, and time management.

Condensing an ideal plan of learning over the months, sometimes years, into a single month can depend on a lot of variables. The most important variable, apart from the time that can be invested, is the number of points they expect to increase from their baseline score. The higher the gap between the baseline score and goal score, the more time that will have to be invested in this one-month plan.

This may come across as studying endlessly for an entire month to reach the goal score. But that is not the case. Experts do not prefer continuous studying for over 5 hours a day which is still a lot yet feasible.

Tracking/Reviewing the Entire Syllabus

The four subjects included in the test are English, Mathematics, Reading, and Science in this very order. Understanding the syllabus also makes candidates consider what topics require detailed study and what other topics may be handled directly while attempting practice tests. The topics that are most often asked in the test have been provided here for easy access.

In English, the four main sections are rhetorical skills, sentence structure, punctuation and grammar. The subsections under rhetorical skills would include transitions, word choice, add/delete questions, organization, main idea, author technique, redundancy, and relevance. In sentence structure, they are known to focus on parallel structure, faulty modifiers, and run-on sentences and fragments. Punctuation as the word suggests deals with all punctuations like commas, parenthesis, semicolon, and colon. Grammar essentially deals with subject-verb agreement, verb tenses, verb forms, pronoun agreement, relative pronouns, and idioms.

In Mathematics, their primary focus is on algebra, geometry and trigonometry. Algebra has been divided into pre-algebra, elementary algebra, and intermediate algebra whereas geometry has been divided into both plane geometry and coordinate geometry. These concepts can be further divided into key topics that are often brought up in ACT tests. Pre-algebra includes fractions, ratios, proportions, statistics, probability, and sequences. Elementary algebra mostly deals with single variable equations and Intermediate algebra contains word problems, functions, and systems of equations. Plane geometry deals with lines, angles, circles, triangles, and polygons whereas coordinate geometry includes lines and slopes among other topics.

The section Reading consists of external passages and ideas that generate critical thinking which does not possess a strict syllabus of its own. The passages may be from fields like literature, humanities, arts, space, etc., and can only be trained for by practicing general passages available in practice question papers.

In Science, there are no concrete concepts that have to be mastered but the test includes contents from biology, chemistry, physics, and earth science which consists of topics like geology, meteorology, and astronomy. Most of the questions in this section will be given in explicit detail. It is understood that only extremely basic concepts need to be learned thoroughly. The concepts that ought to be looked at in Biology are cell biology, DNA, RNA, ribosome, natural selection, photosynthesis, respiration, and genetics. Chemistry requires prior knowledge of basic molecule structure, pH scale, molar mass, phase changes, and freezing and boiling point of water. Physics requires knowledge of gravity, density formula, kinetic energy, and potential energy.

How to Prepare for ACT in a Month

Before preparing a study plan, there are a few steps that ought to be completed in order to conceptualize the plan further. Acting smart always means finding the perfect strategy to minimize effort and maximize output. To act smart here, one has to start by finding their baseline score and then move step by step until the study plan is all set to be put into action.

Tips for Preparing in a Month

Once the strategies are in place and the preparation is in progress, there are certain tips that can speed up the process of studying which might seem obvious but are often downplayed by examinees


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