ACT Aspire Press Kit

About ACT Aspire

ACT® Aspire®, introduced in 2014, is a standards-based system of achievement tests for grades 3 through 10 in English, reading, writing, mathematics, and science. ACT Aspire provides both Summative and Periodic assessments that measure progress toward college and career readiness. ACT Aspire Summative Assessments—linked to ACT Readiness Benchmarks—are designed to measure longitudinal student growth and progress toward college and career readiness, providing valuable data to determine whether students are on target for readiness at each grade level. ACT Aspire Periodic Assessments—linked to the ACT College and Career Readiness Standards—are designed to measure shorter-term student progress to support a targeted and responsive program of instruction. The ACT Aspire system can be used by states, districts, and schools.

Summative Overview

  • ACT Readiness Benchmarks in each subject at each grade level help schools monitor student progress towards college readiness annually from grade 3-10
  • Computer-based assessment with a paper-based administration option
  • Provides projected performance data (including a projected ACT® test score range for 9th and 10th-grade students), results within Reporting Categories to identify areas for improvement, and academic strengths and deficits early in a student’s academic career to inform effective intervention
  • Modular design allows each subject to be taken on its own
  • Aggregate data informs curriculum review, improvement and planning, and supplemental data (ELA score, STEM score, Progress with Text Complexity Indicator, Progress Toward Career Readiness indicator) provides a deeper understanding of student readiness
  • Estimated annual test volume: 4,850,000

What's Tested

ACT Aspire Summative assesses the same four subject areas as the ACT test, plus a writing test:


31-60 items (grade-level dependent), 40-45 minutes


28-46 items (grade-level dependent), 65-75 minutes


29-32 items (grade-level dependent), 65 minutes



33-40 items (grade-level dependent), 60 minutes


40-45 minutes

Total Testing Time:

270-290 minutes

Periodic Overview

  • Affordable, low stakes, short-cycle program (with convenient annual subscription) that provides valuable insights to help students, parents, and educators make important decisions during the academic year
  • Integrated system of assessments provides immediate feedback for targeting instruction and actionable insights for students, parents and educators
  • Modular design allows each subject to be taken on its own
  • Estimated annual test volume: 4,081,100

What's Tested

ACT Aspire Periodic assesses the same four subject areas as the ACT test:

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Reading
  • Science

ACT Aspire Interim Assessments: 3rd-10th-grade; multiple-choice online assessments (four tests per grade for each content area)

  • Each assessment can be administered within a 45-minute class period

ACT Aspire Classroom Assessments: Five-item, multiple-choice quizzes for 3rd- 8th-grades; multiple-choice online assessment for content areas (10 quizzes per grade for each content area)

  • English, math, reading, and science quizzes can be administered within a class period (15-20 minutes)
  • Test dates and times established by the customer within the annual test window (September 1‒June 30 of each school year)
  • Immediate online reporting for interim and classroom assessment

Help Advance Our Mission

Education and Workplace Success

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ACT College & Career Readiness Campaign

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