ACT® Test Policies And Accommodations
To ensure fairness and consistency, the ACT® has established clear policies and guidelines for test registration, administration, and scoring. The ACT has set specific policies regarding the use of calculators on the test, as well as accommodations for test-takers with disabilities and special needs. If you fall into these categories, this article will help you sort through ACT rules and regulations and understand how to request accommodations.
ACT Testing and Security Policies
As you prepare for test day, make sure to follow the ACT testing policies listed below:
- You must carry a valid photo ID that satisfies all the ID requirements and guidelines.
- Sharing calculators is not permitted, and you must bring your own calculator for the Math Test. The calculator must be on your desk during the test.
- It is prohibited to use phones, textbooks, electronic devices, or any other materials during breaks or while taking the test.
- You may not wear your watch during the test. Place it face up on your desk.
- Discussing or exchanging test questions and answers through any means of communication is strictly forbidden.
- You must stick to the predetermined schedule for each section and cannot skip or switch between them.
- It is forbidden to pretend to be someone else or ask someone else to do so.
- Leaving the test center before the end of the test will result in the nullification of your scores.
- ACT requires students to provide their gender and school name for identification purposes during testing.
- As you may already know, students are required to bring and present an acceptable form of photo identification on test day.
- Before granting admission, the test center staff will match the student's photo ID with the roster to ensure the student's identity.
- Students must affirm their identity in writing before and after taking the test to avoid legal penalties.
- ACT may visit test centers on the day of the test to conduct additional security measures, such as capturing images of examinees during check-in.
- Students must register their intention to take the ACT test beforehand and will not be allowed to change the test center/date on the day of the test.
Prohibited behavior at the test center
In addition to the test policies and security measures mentioned above, you must not engage in any of the prohibited actions listed below, whether knowingly or unknowingly:
- Cheating is strictly prohibited.
- Not following the ACT test policies, rules and regulations at the test center.
- Behaving in a confrontational, threatening, or disorderly manner, and breaking any laws.
- Any sound or alarm generating devices causing noise during the test.
ACT test cancellation policy
- You can cancel your ACT test registration any time before the test date. To cancel your registration, log in to your ACT account and follow the cancellation instructions.
- You may be eligible for a partial refund if you cancel within the designated period.
- If you registered for the ACT with the writing test and then cancel your registration, you will not receive a refund for the writing test fee, even if you cancel within the refund window.
- Reschedule your ACT test via your account (additional fees may apply).
- If you fail to cancel your registration you will not be refunded, and you must pay for the test again. Contact ACT Customer Support to request a refund or transfer due to extenuating circumstances.
ACT Calculator Policy
Which calculators are allowed on the ACT?
- You can use parentheses for calculations.
- They are equipped to graph simple functions.
- They can accommodate positive, negative, and fractional exponents, and
- They can convert fractions to decimals and vice versa.
- For a calculator that can hold programs or documents, remove all documents and CAS programs.
- For calculators with paper tape, remove the tape to use it for the ACT Math Test.
- For calculators that make noise, turn off the sound.
- For calculators with an infrared data port (e.g., HP 38G series, HP 39G series, and HP 48G), cover the infrared data port with duct tape or electrician’s tape.
- For calculators with power cords, remove the cords.
Remember to “remove” the CAS program on your calculator rather than just “disabling” it to avoid violation of ACT’s calculator policy.
Prohibited calculators and devices
- fx-CP400 (ClassPad 400)
- ClassPad 300 or ClassPad 330
- Algebra fx 2.0
- All model numbers beginning with CFX-9970G
- HP Prime
- All model numbers beginning with HP 40G, HP 49G, or HP 50G
- All model numbers beginning with TI-89 or TI-92
- TI-Nspire CAS (the TI-Nspire non-CAS is permitted)
- Electronic writing pads or pen-input devices
- Calculators built into phones or other electronic devices
- Calculators that can hold programs or documents
Calculator usage on test day
- Calculators may only be used on the ACT Math section.
- Sharing calculators between examinees during the test is not permitted.
- You may use calculators with audio or braille functionality only if authorized in advance by the ACT or your test coordinator.
- Do not connect your calculator to the testing device.
- Using prohibited devices or calculators not authorized by the ACT may result in your dismissal from the test center or your scores being canceled.
- You can bring an extra calculator or extra batteries as a backup.
ACT Test Accommodations
Who is eligible for accommodations on the ACT test?
Students diagnosed with a documented disability that affects your ability to take the ACT are eligible for accommodations. You can also receive them under an existing IEP (Individualized Education Plan) or 504 plan. To receive accommodations due to disability, you’ll have to undergo a diagnosis and document your disability(s) under one or more of the types listed below:
- Cognitive or intellectual disability
- Learning disability
- Motor disability
- Psychological disability
- Sensory disability
Arranged Testing for the ACT Test
Who is eligible for ACT Arranged Testing?
You can request an arranged testing if you meet one or more of the following criteria:
- Your religious faith prohibits Saturday testing, and a non-Saturday test center is not scheduled within 75 miles of your location for your test date/year.
- There are no test centers within 75 miles of your location for any test date during the testing year.
- You are restricted to a correctional institution throughout the testing year, preventing you from taking the test on any of the scheduled test dates.
How to schedule ACT Arranged Testing?
There are three broad categories for ACT test accommodations:
- Accessibility accommodations
- Assistive technology, and
- Extended time