The company that created the ACT college admissions test is launching a new PreACT test intended for 10th graders, and ACT, Inc. is hoping the pre-test will:
“… show students their areas of strength and where they need to improve. They also provide useful information about possible career paths and help inform important high school decisions,” the company said in a release.
The test was created to establish an early touchstone of student performance to direct student progress for the ACT, writes Nicole Gorman of Education World.
It was also designed to produce fast scores “so teachers and students can get to work turning PreACT insights into action.”
And the PreAct would offer a paper-based, multiple-choice rehearsal test in English, math, reading, and science to “give students high-stakes practice in a low-stakes environment.”
“Report data can help guide action plans for students to increase success in high school courses and on the ACT. Students also receive a personalized view of college and career possibilities—based on their answers to the ACT Interest Inventory—which can help them start thinking about career paths. Parents and counselors can use the data to help students choose high school courses most relevant to career areas of interest.”
The new test will be released this fall for 10th- grade students. ACT Chief Executive Officer Marten Roorda says the PreACT will reveal college and career readiness insights while the students have time to adjust and improve, if necessary. The test will cost $12 per student and will be ordered by school districts in May, reports Adam Clark for New Jersey Online.
In the Midwest, more students take the ACT than the SAT. East Coast states like New Jersey historically have a low level of interest in the ACT, but that has changed in recent years. Only 6% of graduates in 2005 took the ACT, but the number rose to 29% in 2015, according to ACT spokesperson Ed Colby.
The ACT is only one of an array of tests that New Jersey students can take to meet the state’s graduation requirement for standardized testing. The PreACT is similar to the ACT, but it does not contain a writing component, is shorter than the ACT, and takes less time to be administered.
On the ACT, Inc. website, the organization informs students that they can ask to have information from the PreACT shared with colleges of their choice and scholarship agencies, which means an earlier start for seeking recruitment and scholarship awards.
The organization also states that students can use their ACT Online Prep to continue their preparation for the ACT at any time. All aspects of the new 10th-grade test offering are aimed at helping students expand their opportunities, understand their potential, and chart the best course possible toward their career or college prospects, they say.
Schools can also benefit from the receiving the results of the exams. The data can allow schools, districts, and states to make dual enrollment decisions, to identify gaps in the curriculum, and create interventions for their students.
ACT, Inc. offers training that will assist educators in administering the PreACT and understanding the follow-up reports.