Get the 19!
Currently, the Florida Department of Education will accept a concordant score of a 19 for graduating with a standard high school diploma. If you have had trouble passing the Grade 10 FSA, or if you were denied a diploma because of your Grade 10 Reading FCAT score, we recommend taking the ACT Reading. To reach a 19 on the ACT you only have to get 50-55% of the questions correct.
Strategies for getting the 19
- Practice! There are lots of practice ACTs online. We have some on this page. The more you practice the better you'll get. CrackedACT.com has around 30 practice tests on their page for free.
- Give yourself extra time on 3 passages, and skim and guess on the last passage.
- The ACT has 4 reading passages. You have 35 min to complete all 4. Most people try to read all four at 8.5 min each. That's the wrong strategy. Try giving yourself 10-11 min on 3 out of the 4 passages. You will be much more accurate this way than if you try to squeeze in all 4. That extra 3 min a passage really helps. For the last passage (your weakest passage), skim and guess.
- When guessing, use the same letter the whole time. Research shows, when you stick with the same letter, you are more likely to get more correct than if you jump around and christmas tree the test.
Steps to Reading the ACT
- Decide, very quickly, what 3 passages you will spend your 10-11 min on and which passage you will skim and guess. MAKE SURE YOUR WEAK PASSAGE IS THE ONE YOU SKIM AND GUESS.
- This is why practice is so Important. You practice and discover what passages you are strong in, and which passage you are weak in.
- Decide which letter you will use (a (f), b (g), c (h), d (j)) and stick with that when guessing.
- Quickly read the questions first.
- This sets the purpose for reading.
- This helps you identify key areas in the text to focus on.
- Use your pencil to track as you read.
- Moving your pencil along the text as you read helps keep you focused on the passage.
- Push that pencil across the text at a good speed.
- Mark the text as you read. Underline, star, circle important parts in the text. THIS WORKS!
- Try to read the passage in 6-7 min. This will give you 3-5 min for questions at the end.
- NEVER change your answers, unless you know for sure your first answer is wrong. Research shows, when you change your answers, you are changing correct answer choices to incorrect answer choices. Go with your gut, make a call, and move on to the next question.
- Keep your scantron straight! If you decide to read the 2nd passage last, then make sure you do not mark in that section of your scantron. Be sure to check, after you answer questions for a passage, you are in the correct space on the scantron.