Guessing on the ACT Test

By ACT Practice Tests - Last updated: Saturday, January 10, 2009 - Save & Share - Leave a Comment

Guessing can be an important part of your ACT test taking strategy. Unlike the SAT, you’re not penalized for guessing on the ACT. On the SAT, when you get an answer wrong, your score is decreased by a certain amount. Not so an the ACT test.

Hear some important tips that you may want to consider in incorporating guessing into your test taking strategy.

For many students, it is difficult to answer every question on the ACT. You should always leave enough time at the end of each test section to guess at the questions you have not answered yet. You should never leave a question unanswered on the ACT test. You won’t get docked for wrong answers and you have a 25 percent chance of getting the right answer.

Of course, if you can eliminate one of the answers, you dramatically increase your possibility of guessing the correct answer. If you are guessing out of three answers, you have a 33% chance of guessing the correct answer. That’s a lot better than 25%. And if you can eliminate two of the answers, now you have a 50% chance of guessing the right answer. If you have time, always check to see if you can eliminate any answers before guessing.

If you find yourself spending a lot of time on one question, it might be better to guess and move on. It’s usually better to spend your time on questions that you know you can answer rather than taking a lot of time on questions that are hard for you. Like before, if you can quickly eliminate any of the answers before you guess, you should do so.

If I guess an answer, I like to circle the question so that if I have time at the end of the test, I know which questions I might want to go back and revisit.

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