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ACT Postpones Online Testing for Fall ACT National Testing to Focus on Increasing Seats for Full Testing

Due to COVID-19 disruptions and required social distancing guidelines in ACT test centers, we have made the difficult decision to postpone the planned launch of online testing for national ACT test-takers. We are focused on adding additional testing capacity for students in need of full ACT scores for admission and scholarship applications. This decision will ensure ACT can build additional capacity for fall testing at national test centers and allow test centers to focus on providing a successful paper administration of the ACT test.

The world—and life as we know it—has changed considerably since we announced our plans to introduce online testing to national ACT test-takers beginning with the September 2020 test date.

We have had to make a number of difficult decisions to ensure we’re providing as many safe opportunities as we can for students to earn a composite score for admissions and scholarship applications. We realize the great impact these decisions have on our customers, advocates, partners, and communities.

Our continued focus for fall testing is to expand test center capacity for students in need of scores from the full ACT test, while reducing complexity in testing for our customers, test center network, and education advocates and stakeholders.


“We were technologically on track—as in 26 miles into a 26.2 mile marathon—to launch online testing at national test centers this fall, but the world has changed, and so too must our plans and timeframe for launching this enhancement,” said ACT CEO Janet Godwin. “We’re going to focus our efforts on doing what we we’ve done well for 60 years and implementing what we can, when we can, safely and with confidence. That said, we will continue to build out this capability from a technology standpoint so we can be ready to deliver it when the market is ready.”

Additional Fall National Testing Updates

ACT recently added new test dates to give students more opportunities to take the ACT test this fall, and still plans to offer a remote proctoring solution, allowing students to take the test online, at home or at other safe and convenient locations in late fall/early winter. This option will improve students’ test-taking experience and increase their opportunities for college admissions and scholarships, while setting the stage for the future release of section retesting and online testing.

Beginning in September 2020, ACT will offer the option to report a superscore for students who have taken the ACT test more than once, and will offer four fee waivers to qualifying students (double the number previously offered) to take the ACT test for free.
At this time, ACT plans to launch online testing in 2021 but will continue to monitor the impacts of COVID-19 on test center capacity to prioritize safe and equitable access to testing.

States and districts will still have the option of offering online testing as part of their in-school testing programs. Students who test outside of the U.S. will continue to take the ACT as a computer-based test.

Students can sign up to be the first to know when registration for the fall test dates opens.


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About ACT

ACT is a mission-driven, nonprofit organization dedicated to helping people achieve education and workplace success. Grounded in 60 years of research, ACT is a trusted leader in college and career readiness solutions. Each year, ACT serves millions of students, job seekers, schools, government agencies and employers in the US and around the world with learning resources, assessments, research and credentials designed to help them succeed from elementary school through career.

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