How to Register for the ACT: Step-by-Step Guide (With Pictures)

Wondering how ACT registration works online? Read on to learn about ACT sign-up procedures and get step-by-step support.

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by Staff Writers

Published on May 27, 2022 · Updated on June 1, 2022

Edited by Tyler Epps
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How to Register for the ACT: Step-by-Step Guide (With Pictures)
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About 1.3 million students took the ACT in 2021. Around one-third of test-takers took the ACT more than once.

While some colleges and universities have made the ACT and SAT optional during the COVID-19 pandemic, others still require applicants to submit scores.

You can register for the ACT using one of two ways. Get step-by-step information on how to register for the ACT online at ACT.org below.

Do You Register for the ACT Online or by Mail?

ACT registration can be done online or by mail. Registering for the exam online is easier and quicker and takes only a few minutes.

That said, some situations may require students to register by mail. Examples include being under the age of 13 or not being able to pay with a credit card.

People who need to use the mail route must request a registration packet from ACT Inc. After it arrives, fill out the required information, make your payment, and return it to ACT Inc.

How to Register Online for the ACT in 9 Easy Steps

By following the steps outlined below, you can register for the ACT online and start preparing for test day. But first, here's a quick overview of the fees you can expect to pay with ACT sign-up.

Service Fee
ACT Registration Fee (No Writing) $63
ACT Registration Fee (With Writing) $88
Test Option Change (Writing or No Writing) $25
Change Test Date or Test Center $40
Cancel Registration Nonrefundable
Late Registration $36

Source: ACT.org

1. Create an Account on ACT.org

Before registering for the ACT, you must make a MyACT account. Students opening a new account who have not previously registered for the exam must provide their full name, date of birth, email, country, and phone number. They must also agree to the terms and conditions.

After creating an account, you'll need to verify your details through an email or text message.

2. Visit Your ACT Dashboard and Click "Register for the ACT"

After creating a MyACT account, you can begin the process of registering for the ACT. Students should visit the ACT dashboard page to find a registration link.

From there, you can select whether you'll be testing in or outside the U.S. and indicate whether you'll need any accommodations during the exam for a documented disability. You must also decide whether you plan on taking the ACT with or without the optional Writing component.


3. Choose Your Test Center and Test Date

After specifying the type of exam you want to take (e.g., with or without the Writing section), you'll be taken to a screen where you can select both your testing center and test date. Enter your zip code to find the closest testing centers.

You can toggle views to choose from available dates or available sites.

By Test Date:

By Test Center:

Depending on your availability, you may be unable to take the ACT at the closest testing center.

4. Review Your Selections

After confirming the testing location and date, review your selections to make sure everything looks correct.

If paying for the ACT out of pocket, this is when you can use a credit or debit card to pay the exam fee. Learners who have been issued an ACT fee waiver, voucher, or promotional code can enter the confirmation number during this step.


5. Add Services and Practice Materials (Optional)

ACT Inc. offers a variety of practice materials, tutoring services, and self-paced ACT prep courses. Students can also access live online courses and prep guides. You can add any of these services or products as extras on the page following payment.

In addition, on this page you can buy a test information release (TIR) for $30. This provides you with a copy of your answers. You'll receive a digital copy along with your ACT scores.


6. Add Your Photo ID and Additional Personal Information

On the next page, you must provide additional information, including a photo ID that will be used to verify your identity on test day. You must also enter other data, including courses taken and grades received.

At this point, examinees can opt into ACT Inc.'s Education Opportunity Service (EOS), a free program for students who want their information and scores to be sent to accredited colleges and scholarship agencies.


7. Indicate Your College Choices and Score Preferences (Optional)

Next, you have the option of listing your prospective colleges so your ACT scores can be sent directly to these schools. ACT Inc. allows you to send ACT scores to up to four schools for free.

Many students decide to do this with schools they know they want to attend so they can save time and money. Students applying to highly competitive schools may prefer to skip this step so they can ensure their score is strong enough before sending score reports to prospective colleges.


8. Enter Your Parent or Guardian's Information (Optional)

You may opt to enter your parents' or guardians' contact information so they can see your test scores as well. You do not need to complete this step and can choose to keep your ACT score reports private if you so choose.


9. Submit Payment and Confirm Your ACT Registration

On the final registration page, you'll complete the payment process, including any extras or add-ons you selected on the previous pages. Carefully review the terms and conditions set forth by ACT Inc. before accepting them.

After reviewing payment information and terms, submit the form and receive confirmation details.


Frequently Asked Questions About ACT Registration

true How do you cancel ACT registration?

While the $63 fee paid to register for the ACT is nonrefundable (as are any fees paid for late registration or test location changes), students can have optional services, such as additional score reports, refunded. That said, you can change the date of your ACT if that helps.

To change your test date, log in to your MyACT account on ACT.org and navigate to your dashboard. From there, click the link that says "Make Changes to Your Registration." While this does cost $25, it can prevent you from losing your whole registration fee.

true Can you register late for the ACT?

Yes, you can register late for the ACT. While the normal registration deadline is usually over a month before the actual test, the late registration deadline is typically about three weeks before the exam. Students can sign up late by paying a $36 fee in addition to the $63 registration fee.

The ACT also provides a standby request deadline up to eight days before the exam. Students who miss the late registration deadline can apply for standby by paying $63. Note that you're not guaranteed a place if you're on standby, as seats are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis.

true How much is the late registration fee for the ACT?

The late registration fee for the ACT is $36, as of May 2022. Students who choose this option will pay $99 to take the ACT (that's the late registration fee of $36 plus the regular registration fee of $63). Learners will pay more if they add any optional services such as a test center change, additional score reports, or a test information release.

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