ACT Writing


The ACT has an optional writing test where you respond to a social issue evaluating three perspectives on an issue.

  • 40 minutes, multiple paragraphs

  • Write an essay where you evaluate multiple perspectives on an issue. The essay asks that you analyze and evaluate each perspective given while also providing your own perspective on the issue. You will need to explain the relationship between your position and the perspectives given.

  • You may DEFEND, CHALLENGE, or QUALIFY any of the perspectives given supporting your ideas with concrete detail, perceptive insight, logical reasoning, and well-chosen references.


  1. Ideas and Analysis

    1. Construct a coherent, well-develop argument

    2. Perceptive insight, counter arguments

  2. Development and Support

    1. Well chosen detail/references

    2. Effectively justify your position

  3. Organization

    1. Clear transitions

    2. Organized paragraphs with topic sentences

    3. Multiple body paragraphs: point, evidence, explain, evidence, explain, link or conclude

  4. Language Use and Conventions

    1. Accurate, precise, concise language

    2. Free of grammatical errors

Each criterion receives a score from 1-6 by two different grades and then is average to receive a score from 1-12 for the entire essay

See this link for more information about the scoring of the essay.

Practice Prompts