ACT English

Overview of English ACT Test

The ACT English Test focuses on your ability to correct errors in grammar and punctuation as well as organization and style in five different passages.


  • 5 prose passage with 15 questions per passage, for a total of 75 questions in 45 minutes

  • Two categories: 1) usage and mechanics 2) rhetorical skills

  • Areas of focus

    • Complete sentences

    • Consistency in tenses

    • Concise and clear

    • Word usage



Usage and Mechanics


  • Comma placement

  • Commonly confused words: its vs itś, their vs there vs theyŕe

  • Subject-verb agreement

  • Irregular verbs

  • Pronoun agreement/case

  • Verb tense

  • Active voice

  • Appropriate transitions

  • Conciseness

Rhetorical skills


  • Word choice and idioms

    • Select the precise word that fits the context

    • With idioms, they check to see that you are using the correct preposition (which can be tricky)

    • Commonly confused words

      • Affect vs effect

      • Allusion vs illusion vs elusion

      • Cite vs site vs sight

      • Lay vs lie vs laid

      • Lead vs led

      • Passed vs past

      • Than vs then

  • Questions may say EXCEPT/LEAST NOT--you have to find which one does NOT work

Sample Questions