New for the 2020-21 School Year: Periodic At Home Testing

Create a Stronger Start with ACT Aspire

From grades 3 through 10, ACT® Aspire® offers a unique, connected approach to measuring student progress. The system is anchored by the ACT® test for students in grades 11 and 12 and provides empirically based readiness benchmarks at every grade.  

Following the interruption of schooling due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, schools may not have been able to offer a spring 2020 administration. Going into the 2020-2021 academic year, standard-based measures of student achievement are needed more than ever. Because learning gains (or losses) during the shutdown period are expected to vary considerably student-to-student, measures of student achievement are particularly important heading into 2020-2021. Fall test scores reflect the net impact of learning that occurred through 2019-2020, summer learning loss and additional loss caused by the school shutdowns, and any positive effects of shutdown mitigation efforts (such as online learning or starting school early in the fall). 

Talk to an ACT Representative about a flexible implementation model as you navigate COVID.

ACT Aspire Fast Facts

  • Vertically articulated, standards-based system of summative, interim, and classroom assessments
  • Aligned to ACT College Readiness Benchmarks and Common Core State Standards
  • Anchored by the capstone college readiness assessment, the ACT
  • Multiple question types: constructed response, selected response, and technology-enhanced
  • Subject areas: English, math, reading, science, and writing for grades 3–10
  • Modular administration of subjects and grades available
  • Online delivery of assessments with traditional paper-and-pencil option
  • Accurately predicts students’ future scores on Aspire Summive and the ACT
  • Periodic testing administration offered at home or in classroom

Assessment Overview

The ACT Aspire Assessment System® is a vertically scaled, standards-based system of assessments that monitors student growth and progress toward college and career readiness.

New This Year for ACT Aspire

To support schools transitioning to blending learning enviorments this fall, Periodic assessments can now be offered at home. Periodic At-Home Testing FAQs

These opportunities, available for EARLY fall 2020 testing only, allow schools and districts to receive critical baseline data or to fill the data gaps created by COVID-19.

Option 1: Assess students in fall 2020 at their spring 2020 grade level. Using ACT Aspire Summative, students can be tested at the grade level from the previous academic year.

Option 2: Assess students in fall 2020 at their 2020-2021 grade level. Another option is to use ACT Aspire Summative to test students in fall 2020 at their current grade level.

Option 3: Use ACT Aspire Interim assessments throughout the 2020-2021 academic year. Under this option, ACT Aspire Summative assessments are not administered in fall 2020. Instead, schools use the ACT Aspire Interim assessments, at home or in the classroom, to identify students in need of additional instructional support for the coming academic year, and to monitor progress throughout the academic year.

Learn More About Fall Testing Options

This earlier window allows schools and districts to test earlier and receive baseline data or to fill the data gaps created by COVID-19.

September 1, 2020 - November 20, 2020

Customers with submitted online tests and paper materials received for processing by September 25, 2020 will receive fast tracked reporting.

Starting on September, 14, 2020 early scored data will be available, final reports posted online the week of October 16 – 23, 2020.

The enrollment process has been streamlined for authorized signatories with standard pricing. Simply agree to terms and conditions and the enrollment is complete. Enroll Today!

Interim individual student and current progress reports will now have a Predictive Summative Score, giving educators insight into how well a student will do on the Summative assessment.

Together, We Can Make Students Unstoppable

See how educators are using ACT Aspire to track and improve student readiness for college and career.

Related Research

College Readiness Benchmarks

The ACT College Readiness Benchmarks are the minimum ACT test scores required for students to have a reasonable chance of success in first-year credit-bearing college courses at the typical college. 

The Forgotten Middle

ACT data show that fewer than two in 10 eighth graders are on target to be ready for college- and career-level work by the time they graduate from high school. 

Ready to create a stronger start for your students?

Getting Started with ACT Aspire

We encourage you to learn more about the value of delivering ACT Aspire assessments by completing our information request form. Upon completing the request, an ACT representative will reach out to you to discuss the program.


Talk to an ACT Representative about a flexible implementation model as you navigate COVID.

With both summative and periodic assessments available, ACT Aspire can be administered in a number of ways to meet the needs of your students. Special “bundled” pricing is available when the summative and periodic assessments are purchased together.

ACT Aspire Periodic $10.00 per student
Summative Online Testing $25.00 per student
Summative Paper Testing $31.00 per student
Summative Options Printed Individual Student Reports: $1.50
Printed Individual Score Labels: $0.50
Summative Order 400-1,000 students: $1.00 off/Student
Order over 1,000 students: $2.00 off/Student
When Summative and Periodic ordered during same school year: $2.00 off/Student (applied to Summative)

Two test windows are available for ACT Aspire Summative testing each year: One window in the fall and one window in the spring. The ACT Aspire Summative assessment is a computer-delivered test. However, it can be delivered via paper-and-pencil testing for an additional fee. The periodic assessments are CBT only.

Test Session Agreement Deadline Testing Window
Aspire Periodic 2020-2021 NA Sept 1, 2020 - June 30, 2021
ACT Aspire Summative Fall 2020 October 9, 2020 Sept 1, 2020 - Nov 20, 2020
ACT Aspire Summative Spring 2021 April 9, 2021 March 29, 2021 - May 21, 2021

Explore More Aspire Resources

Have questions? Visit our FAQ page, call 855-730-0400, or complete this contact form.

ACT Aspire

ACT Aspire is the first computer-based longitudinal assessment system connecting student progress from the elementary grades through high school.

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