Paradise High School College Nights
November 10, 2009
By SusanLee Torrey and Alan Rice
• The ACT® test assesses high school students'
general educational development and their
ability to complete college-level work.
• The multiple-choice tests cover four skill
areas: English, mathematics, reading, and
• The Writing Test measures skill in planning
and writing a short essay.
• SAT tests students' knowledge of subjects that
are necessary for college success: reading,
writing, and mathematics.
• The SAT assesses the critical thinking skills
students need for academic success in
college—skills that students learned in high
ACT and SAT: Purpose
For students:
• To advise students about their academic
standing statewide and nationwide
• To identify academic areas of strength and
For colleges and universities
• To determine a student’s potential academic
performance/success in college
ACT and SAT:
Use by Colleges/Universities
• Admission
Used in conjunction with class rank, GPA,
admission essays
• Scholarships
Many universities have one application for
university scholarships
ACT: Test Structure
• English Section
• Measures standard written English and
rhetorical skills
• 75 questions
• 45 minutes
ACT: English section
• The test consists of five prose passages, each
one accompanied by multiple-choice test
questions. Different passage types are
included to provide variety.
• Questions ask about an underlined portion, a
section of the passage, or the passage as a
• Many questions include "NO CHANGE" to the
underlined portion or the passage as one of
the choices.
ACT: Test Structure
• Mathematics Section
• Measures mathematical skills students have
typically acquired in courses taken up to the
beginning of grade 12.
• 60 questions
• 60 minutes
ACT: Mathematics Section
• The test presents multiple-choice questions
that require reasoning skills to solve practical
problems in mathematics.
• Students need knowledge of basic formulas
and computational skills to answer the
problems, but are not required to know
complex formulas and perform extensive
• Calculators are permitted but not necessary.
ACT: Test Structure
Reading Section
Measures reading comprehension
40 questions
35 minutes
ACT: Reading Section
Questions ask students to use referring and reasoning
skills to:
• determine main ideas
• locate and interpret significant details
• understand sequences of events
• make comparisons
• comprehend cause-effect relationships
• determine the meaning of context-dependent words,
phrases, and statements
• draw generalizations
• analyze the author's or narrator's voice and method
ACT: Reading Section
The test comprises four prose passages that are
representative of the level and kind of reading
required in first-year college courses; passages
on topics in social studies, natural sciences,
prose fiction, and the humanities are
ACT: Test Structure
• Science Section
• Measures the interpretation, analysis,
evaluation, reasoning, and problem-solving
skills required in the natural sciences.
• 40 questions
• 35 minutes
ACT: Science Section
The test presents seven sets of scientific information,
each followed by a number of multiple-choice test
questions. The scientific information is presented in
one of three different formats:
• data representation (graphs, tables, and other
schematic forms)
• research summaries (descriptions of one or more
related experiments)
• conflicting viewpoints (expressions of several related
hypotheses or views that are inconsistent with one
ACT: Science Section
The questions require students to:
• recognize and understand the basic features of,
and concepts related to, the provided
• examine critically the relationship between the
information provided and the conclusions drawn
or hypotheses developed
• generalize from given information and draw
conclusions, gain new information, or make
ACT: Test Structure
• Writing Section
• Measures writing skills emphasized in high
school English classes and in entry-level
college composition courses.
• 1 prompt
• 30 minutes
ACT: Writing Section
• The test consists of one writing prompt that will
define an issue and describe two points of view
on that issue. You are asked to respond to a
question about your position on the issue
described in the writing prompt. In doing so, you
may adopt one or the other of the perspectives
described in the prompt, or you may present a
different point of view on the issue. Your score
will not be affected by the point of view you take
on the issue.
ACT: Testing Tips
• Carefully read the instructions on the cover of
the test booklet.
• Read the directions for each test carefully.
• Read each question carefully.
ACT: Testing Tips
• Pace yourself—don't spend too much time on
a single passage or question.
• Pay attention to the announcement of five
minutes remaining on each test.
ACT: Testing Tips
• Answer the easy questions first, then go back
and answer the more difficult ones if you have
time remaining on that test.
• On difficult questions, eliminate as many
incorrect answers as you can, then make an
educated guess among those remaining.
ACT: Testing Tips
• Answer every question. Your scores on the
multiple-choice tests are based on the
number of questions you answer correctly.
There is no penalty for guessing.
• Answer first and last questions in English and
Math sections. The first 10-15 and last 10-15
questions in these sections are generally
easier than the middle questions.
ACT: Website
ACT: Scores
• ACT scores range from 36 to 11
• Highest score is a 36
ACT: Sample Score Report
Search for sample score report
SAT: Test Structure
• Critical Reading Section
• 70 minutes (two 25-minute sections and one
20-minute section)
• Reading comprehension, sentence
completions, and paragraph-length critical
SAT: Critical Reading
• Sentence completion questions test your
vocabulary and your understanding of
sentence structure. (19 questions)
• Passage-based reading questions test your
comprehension of what is stated in or implied
by the passage, not your prior knowledge of
the topic. (48 questions)
SAT: Test Structure
• Mathematics Section
• 70 minutes (two 25-minute sections and one
20-minute section)
• Multiple-choice questions and studentproduced responses
SAT: Mathematics Section
• Multiple-choice questions (44 questions)
• Student-produced response questions appear
without answer choices. You'll use your
answer sheet to "grid in" your solution. (10
SAT: Test Structure
• Writing Section
• 60 minutes (two 25-minute sections and one
10-minute section)
• Multiple choice questions (35 min.) and
student-written essay (25 min.)
SAT: Writing Section
• The SAT® begins with an essay. You'll be asked
to present and support a point of view on a
specific issue. Because you have only 25
minutes, your essay is not expected to be
polished—it is meant to be a first draft.
SAT: Writing Section
The SAT writing section also includes three types
of multiple-choice questions:
– Improving sentences (25 questions)
– Identifying sentence errors (18 questions)
– Improving paragraphs (6 questions)
SAT: Writing Section
The multiple-choice sections measure your ability to:
• communicate ideas clearly and effectively
• improve a piece of writing through revision and editing
• recognize and identify sentence-level errors
• understand grammatical elements and structures and
how they relate to each other in a sentence
• recognize correctly formed grammatical structures
• clearly express ideas through sentence-combining and
use of transitional words and phrases
• improve coherence of ideas within and among
SAT: Subject Tests
• The SAT Subject Tests measure your knowledge
and skills in particular subject areas, and your
ability to apply that knowledge.
• The SAT Subject Tests are the only national
admissions tests that give you the opportunity to
demonstrate mastery of content in specific
subjects, such as English, history, mathematics,
science, and various foreign languages.
SAT: Testing Tips
• Answer easy questions first. The easier questions are
usually at the start of the section, and the harder ones
are at the end. The exception is in the critical reading
section, where questions are ordered according to the
logic and organization of each passage.
• Make educated guesses. If you can rule out one or
more answer choices for multiple-choice questions,
you have a better chance of guessing the right answer.
• Skip questions that you really can't answer. No points
are deducted if an answer is left blank.
SAT: Testing Tips
• Limit your time on any one question. All
questions are worth the same number of
points. If you need a lot of time to answer a
question, go on to the next one. Later, you
may have time to return to the question you
• Keep track of time. Don't spend too much
time on any group of questions within a
SAT: website
SAT: Scores
• SAT scores range from
1600 to 510
• Highest score is a 1600
SAT: Sample Score Report
Using a search engine, search for sample sat
score report. Click on Page 1 of 6 Score
Report. It is a sample score report provided
by the Princeton Review.
ACT/SAT Concordance
Search for act and sat score concordance
ACT and SAT: Test Day Tips
Get a good night’s sleep
Eat breakfast. Take snacks for the break.
Turn off cell phone.
Bring a watch for time keeping.
ACT and SAT: Test Day Tips
• Bring appropriate form of ID
• Bring admission ticket.
• Bring several no. 2 pencils (no mechanical
pencils or pens)
• Bring approved calculator (allowed but not
ACT and SAT: When to Take?
• Spring of junior year
• Early fall of senior year
• Last chance for seniors: early second semester
senior year (February test date)
ACT and SAT: How Many Times?
• Take at least twice.
• Statistics show that on average students
improve 1-2 points on the ACT and 50-200
points on the SAT.
ACT: Test Dates 2009-2010
Test date
December 12, 2009
February 6, 2010
April 10, 2010
June 12, 2010
November 6, 2009
January 5, 2010
March 5, 2010
May 7, 2010
Late Registration
November 7 – 20, 2009
January 6 – 15, 2010
March 6 – 19, 2010
May 8 – 21, 2010
ACT: Fees 2009-2010
ACT test with no writing section
ACT test with writing section
Fees include score to student, score report to high school, and four
score reports to colleges and universities of student’s choice
Fee waivers available: see your campus counselor for qualifications
SAT: Test Dates 2009-2010
Test date
January 23, 2010
March 13, 2010
May 1, 2010
June 5, 2010
December 15, 2009
February 4, 2010
March 25, 2010
April 29, 2010
SAT: Fees 2009-2010
SAT test includes writing section
SAT subject tests
Fees include score to student, score report to high school, and four score
reports to colleges and universities of student’s choice
Fee waivers available: see your campus counselor for qualifications
Admission Requirements
• University of North Texas
Accepts ACT or SAT (must submit writing
section, but not used for admission)
Admission Requirements
• Sam Houston State University
Accepts ACT or SAT
Admission Requirements
• Mid Western State University
Accepts ACT or SAT (must submit writing
portion, but not used for admission)
ACT/SAT: Questions

ACT and SAT PREP - Paradise Elementary School