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How to Register for the ACT?

Oct 22, 2022

The ACT is a college entrance exam utilized by most colleges and universities to determine admissions choices. ACT, Inc. administers a multiple-choice, pencil-and-paper exam. ACT registration appears to be a specific aspect of the testing procedure. However, it is more complicated than that. You will have to prioritize certain factors to avoid making critical errors that can be expensive. This article will go through the ACT registration process step by step.

You should complete your online ACT registration early as space is limited at each test site, and you could lose out on a spot. It is highly encouraged to complete your ACT registration online. For individuals who cannot register online, a mail-in registration option is available.


There is also a standby option for those who miss the deadlines. You may be eligible to take the ACT during the standby registration period by applying through the ACT website. You will be charged a $56 standby fee. This is in addition to the standard testing fee. On the ACT test date, you will be required to report to the testing facility. If no seats are available and you cannot take the exam, your money will be reimbursed.

There are two ways to register for the ACT – online and by mail. We will look at both of these methods below.


Online Registration

  • You must first set up an ACT Web Account to register online, which may be done on the ACT website. Online ACT registration is available for both domestic and international students. ACT registration login information includes your name, address, social security number, and email id.
  • Apart from your details, you will also be asked questions about your school, the subjects you study, your family and your hobbies. Once you have created an account, you should be able to sign in to the website with your ACT registration log in information. Be sure to note your ACT registration login username and password. You’ll need them to re-login to see your scores or register for another test.
  • The ACT registration procedure will ask you to choose your test date, whether you want to take the ACT (No Writing) or the ACT Plus Writing, and will inform you of any fees that may apply. You will also be able to purchase authentic ACT test preparation resources.
  • During the ACT test registration procedure, you will be able to specify which colleges should get your ACT test results. You will be asked to confirm all of the information you have supplied and offer a means of payment, after which you will be asked to pick where you would want to take the ACT. When registering online, the only acceptable payment method is credit cards.
  • According to the ACT website, you cannot cancel your purchase after enrolling for the ACT, and most payments are non-refundable. Students who register online will be able to print their ACT scores report using their ACT registration log in information as soon as the results are available.

Mail-In Registration

  • Although mail registration is available to everyone, the ACT asks for it if you are below thirteen years of age or if you cannot pay for your ACT registration with a credit card.
  • If you want to register via mail, a mail packet can be obtained through your school’s counseling or college office. If your counselor does not have any, or if you do not have access to school materials, you can obtain a packet online by visiting the official ACT website. 
  • Fill out the form. The information sought by the postal registration package is the same as the information asked for during the online ACT registration. You will be questioned about your high school coursework and grades, as well as your job goals and college aspirations. You will also be required to select a testing location and date.
  • You must include a current photograph of yourself. You can submit a printed photo along with your registration form, or you can upload a picture online by using your ACT registration log in information.
  • Send your completed registration form via mail. Allow 7–10 business days for delivery. The package must be submitted before the standard deadline date to avoid late registration costs. Your test ticket will be sent back to you in the mail.  You may also use your ACT online account to generate a ticket. 

Stand-by Registration

If you are unable to register during the regular registration dates, you may register for standby testing. To be admitted to the testing center, you should have a standby ticket before the test day. This does not guarantee you a seat. On the ACT test date, you will be required to report to the testing facility. If no seats are available and you cannot take the exam, your money will be reimbursed. The standby request period expires approximately one week before the test date.

  • Sign in to your ACT account and choose a testing center. Selecting one of the bigger exam venues will increase your chances of admission because it is more likely to have space for you.
  • Testing slots are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis, so arrive early to guarantee that test materials, chairs, and personnel are available. Arriving early boosts your chances of getting a place.

ACT Registration Dates

Don’t let your ideal exam date go away. Check ACT registration dates and deadlines to ensure that you sign up for the desired exam day. If you miss the regular ACT registration dates, you will have to register during the late registration period. This period extends 14 days beyond an ACT test date. You must pay a $35 late registration fee to finish your ACT registration. This is in addition to the standard testing fee. 


The table below shows the upcoming ACT registration deadlines and test dates for 2023. 

ACT Test Date Deadline for Normal ACT Registration  Deadline for Late ACT Registration Deadline for Standby Requests 
February 11, 2023 January 6, 2023 January 20, 2023 February 3, 2023 
April 15, 2023 March 10, 2023 March 24, 2023 April 7, 2023 
June 10, 2023 May 5, 2023 May 19, 2023 June 2, 2023 
July 15, 2023 June 16, 2023 June 23, 2023 July 7, 2023 

Tips for Registering for the ACT

Now that you know how to register for ACT examinations, here are some helpful hints:

  • Select the best location. Many students take it in their high school, but this may not be the greatest site! In general, aim to find venues that are close to your home. Choose an area that is known to you. If you must select an unknown site, attempt to scout it out ahead of time or allocate additional time to get there and familiarise yourself with the layout. If having friends present on exam day is beneficial, register at your high school. If it’s too stressful, register somewhere else. If you decide to change your test location by the registration deadline, it will cost you a $25 fee. 
  • Register as soon as possible before the deadline. Make a mental point to register at least six weeks before your exam date. If you don’t do it on time, you’ll be charged or, worse; you won’t be able to take your test at all.
  • If you qualify, you are eligible to apply for a fee waiver. The ACT has arrangements for low-income students in the form of a “Fee Waiver Program.” If you meet the eligibility criteria given on the official website, you can apply for the program. The advantages of this program include ACT test fee coverage and college application fee waiver, among others. 

Points to Remember while Choosing Your ACT Test Dates 

  • The ACT is administered seven times a year: February, April, June, July, August, September, and October.
  • You can prepare for the ACT yourself or join a training institute. The training institute will urge you to book your ACT registration date at the earliest. This is so that you have a broad time frame for ACT exam preparation. 
  • You need to remember to schedule your ACT test date only when you have ample time to study and revise. If you are occupied with other activities, it is best to reschedule it. 
  • The best time to schedule your ACT test date is after you have finished your Geometry and Algebra II course, as this is included in the ACT syllabus. 
  • Booking the test date and location must be done before the regular ACT registration date, allowing for at least a month before the actual ACT test date.

Registration and Service Fees 

It costs $67.00 for the ACT including the Writing test and $50.50 for the ACT without the Writing test to register for testing in the US. Score reports for the student, his or her high school, and up to four colleges or universities are included in the registration cost.  

There is a $150.00 (no writing exam) or $166.50 registration cost for ACT administrations outside of the United States (with the Writing test). Additionally, there are additional expenses for standby testing ($53.00), late registration ($30.00), changing the test day ($30.00), and changing the test center ($30.00). 


Frequently Asked Questions 

1. When and how should I register?  

The registration period begins around 10 weeks before the test date and ends about four weeks before the test day. Get an ACT registration/information packet from your high school counselor and follow the registration instructions in it to register at this time. 

2. How frequently is the exam given?  

Depending on where you live, the test is administered five or six times a year. Typically, the exam is administered in October, December, February, April, and June. It is also delivered in September in some places. Saturday mornings are reserved for routine administrations. 


3. Who conducts the ACT?  

The American College Testing Program is in charge of giving out the ACT. See to visit the ACT website. 

ACT registration


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