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ACT Test Day

Everything you need to know for the day of the test.

Preparing for Test Day
with the ACT

Success on the ACT starts long before test day. Understanding what to expect and how to prepare can help you feel confident and ready to do your best. Below, we provide essential information to ensure your ACT test day goes smoothly. From what to bring and what to leave at home, to understanding the test day process, we’ve got you covered. Dive in to find out everything you need to know to make your ACT test day a success.
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What to Bring on Test Day

Prepare for test day by knowing what to bring and what to leave at home!


Admission Ticket

Print a copy of your admission ticket to bring to the test center. Your ticket contains important registration match information or your online launch code.

Once you have uploaded your photo, you can print your admission ticket in MyACT.

Acceptable Photo identification
Acceptable photo identification is required to be admitted to the test center. You will not be admitted to test if your ID does not meet ACT requirements.
Number 2 pencil

Bring sharpened, No. 2 pencils with good erasers (no mechanical pencils or ink pens). Do not bring any other writing instruments; you will not be allowed to use them. 

Watch or Other Timing Device
You may bring a watch, timer, or stopwatch to pace yourself during testing, but it may not have an alarm. Your watch or other timing device must be removed and placed on your desk while in the test room, so that it remains visible to staff during the test. If an alarm sounds, you’ll be dismissed and your test will not be scored.
Bring a permitted calculator to be used on the mathematics test only. You are not required to use a calculator at all, but if you do, it is your responsibility to know whether your calculator is permitted.

You may bring a snack to eat outside the testing room during break.

Don't bring any of these; you can't access them:

Prohibited devices

The prohibited use of devices is in effect from the time you are admitted to your testing room until you are dismissed at the end of the test, including break times. Specifically: 

Calculator Policy

The ACT calculator policy is designed to ensure fairness for all examinees, avoid disturbances in the testing room, and protect the security of the test materials.

ACT recommends bringing a permitted calculator you are familiar with to be used on the mathematics test only. If you test online, a calculator is available in the test platform, but you may still bring a calculator to use. It is your responsibility to know whether your calculator is permitted.

CAS Calculator FAQs

Acceptable Forms of ID

Current official photo ID

Must be an original, current (valid) ID issued by a city/state/federal government agency or your school.

ID must be in hard plastic card format. Paper or electronic formats are NOT acceptable.

You must use the name on your ID to register to test and the photo ID must be clearly recognizable as you.

ACT Student Identification Form with photo

You MUST present this ACT Student Identification Form (PDF) with photo if you do not have a current official photo ID as described above. This document must be fully completed by a school official or notary public; neither may be a relative.

What to Expect on Test Day

What time does the ACT start

We know test day can be stressful, so we recommend giving yourself plenty of time. Plan to arrive at the test center no later than 8:00 a.m. As you arrive, testing staff will confirm your registration against your ID, and assign you to your designated seat in a test room. You will NOT be admitted to the test if you are late.

Plan for your Test Morning
Arriving at the Test Center
During the Test
Taking a Break
Finishing Up
What time does the ACT end?
If you take the ACT (no writing) you will finish around 12:35 p.m. If you take the ACT with writing you will typically finish at about 1:35 p.m.
Additional Reminders

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