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The ACT has been updated and along with it, there is a new textbook. This blog post will give you an idea of what to watch for in the new test.
The English section is probably the least changed. There is a new question that asks you to insert a sentence at Point [A], [B], [C], or [D]. In the old test, we only saw (1), (2), (3), and (4) being used. The new questions allow for both an alphabetical and a numeric system in the same passage.
The math section has added some statistics and probability questions. You may also see more vectors, sequences, permutations, matrices, etc. Don’t expect to see a lot of them, but the highest scores will definitely require a broader knowledge of math.
The Reading Comprehension section now includes one (but only one) passage that is split into two smaller passages, Passage A and Passage B. The questions are grouped — and labeled — so that you know which questions go with which passage. In other words, the first few questions will be labeled “Passage A,” the next few questions will be labeled “Passage B,” and the final questions will ask about both passages.
Tip: Read Passage A, then do the Passage A questions. Then read Passage B and do the Passage B questions. Then do the “both questions” passages.
The Reading Comprehension section now also includes “literature” words. In other words, some of the answer choices may include words like memoir, narrative, first person, rhetorical, stereotype, anecdote, and idiom.
The Science Reasoning questions now have fewer passages but more science. Specifically, they’ve dropped from 7 passages to only 6. And, the old test essentially only tested your ability to interpret science passages on the page but now, you’ll benefit from knowing a few more science words. If you’ve taken three years of science, though, none of the words should be new. They may require a bit of a refresher. The new book includes these words:
constant / variable
hypothesis / results
recessive / dominant
osmosis / diffusion
The passages themselves also involve higher-level science, like genetics or physics. Still, the answers to most of the questions are hiding on the page and you just need to find them.
You will also see some questions that require science and math, such as asking you to convert from kilograms to grams or similar.
Practice Questions taken from The Official ACT Prep Guide 2016-2017.