ACT Compass® Writing Essay Test (e-Write)

You can obtain a direct measure of students' writing ability with the ACT Compass Writing Essay Test, e-Write, which can be used alone or in conjunction with the Writing Skills Test to place students in appropriate English courses.

The ACT Compass e-Write test consists of one writing prompt that defines an issue or problem and describes two points of view on that issue. Students are asked to respond to a question about their position on the issue described in the prompt.

A powerful scoring engine via the Internet allows e-Write to provide an instantaneous evaluation of a student's writing skills using either a 2–8 or 2–12 score scale.


In addition to a holistic score, e-Write provides subscores in the areas of

  • Focus—consistency and clarity in identifying and maintaining the main idea or point of view
  • Content—extent to which the topic is addressed by the development of ideas and the specificity of details and examples
  • Organization—unity and coherence achieved through logical sequence of ideas
  • Style—how effectively the chosen language enhances the writer's purpose
  • Conventions—control of mechanics in grammar, usage, spelling, and punctuation.

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