ACT District Testing

The ACT: Fall Administration

The ACT District Testing program provides students the opportunity to earn college-reportable ACT scores by taking the test in their own classrooms. 

Next Steps | Welcome | Test Dates | Tips for Success | Help and Contact

Test Administration Process Next Steps

Select your current phase of the test administration process to see resources related to that phase.


Step 1: Orientation - Learn about test formats and policies; select test dates and provide shipping information; select test staff and set up accounts.

Step 2: Configuration - Upload student data records; verify enrollment for test materials.

Step 3: Accommodation - Learn about accessibility supports; request accommodations and/or supports; request qualified exceptions to the deadline.

Step 4: Preparation - Order test materials; complete non-test activities; provide examinees test prep information; prepare your facility, staff, and materials; update examinee information.

Step 5: Administration - Administer the test.

Step 6: Transportation - Return test materials.

Step 7: Interpretation - Access and understand score reports; share reporting information with examinees.

Welcome to Your District Testing Program

Important Dates

Your Schedule of Events contains all dates and deadlines for your test event. Check it frequently to ensure you're on track for a successful administration.

Test Dates

The ACT Taken on Paper

  • Test Window 1: October 5, 2021
  • Test Accommodations Window 1: October 5-8, 2021 and October 11-15, 2021
  • Test Window 2: October 19, 2021
  • Test Accommodations Window 2: October 19-22, 2021 and October 25, 2021


Documents will be replaced as they become available for fall 2021 testing.

Tips for Success

  1. Bookmark this web page and check back frequently for updated content. Content will be added as it's available.
  2. Mark important dates from your Schedule of Events on your calendar and set reminders for deadlines.
  3. Familiarize yourself with the seven stages of the testing cycle (Orientation, Configuration, Accommodation, Preparation, Administration, Transportation, and Interpretation) by browsing using the links provided. You can see a brief description, action items, and resources associated with each stage to help you get a feel for the testing timeline. Content will be linked as it becomes available.
  4. Watch for emails from ACT with important reminders. Add our email address to your contacts to prevent emails from going to spam/junk folders.

Helpful Links

Expand each tray to reveal the information you're looking for.

COVID-19 Contingency Planning

We understand planning a test administration amidst the COVID-19 pandemic can be stressful, particularly when accounting for things like hybrid learning models, unexpected closures/quarantines, and social distancing guidelines. ACT aims to offer as much flexibility as possible as we navigate these challenges together. Please see the resources and tips below to help ensure your students can successfully test.

Tip: The Social Distancing Guidelines provide you safety precautions to follow when setting up your facility and handling test materials.

Tip: Utilize your testing windows to their fullest. Examinees can be spread throughout a single window (accommodations only) or across multiple windows (all testing) to maximize social distancing and accommodate hybrid learning schedules.

Step 1: Orientation

Before Testing: Get started with your testing program.

Learn about Test Formats and Policies


Select Test Dates and Verify Shipping Address (Manage Participation)


calendarAugust 2 – 27, 2021




Select Test Staff and Set Up Accounts




Tip: When the district test coordinator changes the school test coordinator in PearsonAccessnext, remember to deactivate the existing test coordinator's user account. Updates need to be completed in two places: the manage contacts screen and creating a new user account.

Step 2: Configuration

Before Testing: Ensure systems are set up and data is submitted for testing.

Upload Student Data Records (SDU File)

Verify Enrollment Counts


calendarAugust 2 – 27, 2021



Tip: To verify accommodations/supports counts, run an Accommodations and Supports Roster in PearsonAccessnext.


Step 3: Accommodation

Before Testing: Identify student needs for accommodations and/or supports.

Learn about Accessibility Supports

Request Accommodations and/or English Learner (EL) Supports

Request Qualified Exceptions to the Deadline


calendarSeptember 6 – October 1, 2021



Tip: Reconsideration is used if you submitted a request for accommodations that was denied. Late consideration is used if you missed the initial deadline to submit accommodations.

Tip: If selecting the qualified exceptions date in TAA, make sure to attach the Qualified Exceptions to the Deadline Form in the request.

Step 4: Preparation

Before Testing: Prepare students, staff, facilities, and materials for testing.

Order Test Materials


calendarTest Window 1: September 6 – 24, 2021

calendarTest Window 2: October 5 – 8, 2021




Tip: If additional materials are needed for examinees authorized by ACT to test with accommodations/supports, call the ACT Accommodations team.

Tip: You can track test materials shipments using Orders & Shipment Tracking. See the View Status and Shipment Information section in the PearsonAccessnext User Guide.

Complete Non-Test Activities


calendarAfter materials arrive



Tip: To provide visibility into the non-test information process, schools will have access to a new daily Student Code Usage Status report after receiving their first shipment of materials. This report is posted in the Published Reports section in PearsonAccessnext. Refer to the Accessing Reports section of PearsonAccessnext User Guide for instructions. This report contains “Yes” or “No” to indicate students who have not used their Student Code or not completed college choices.

Provide Examinees Test Prep Information

Prepare Your Facility, Staff, and Test Materials


  • Test Facilities (manual section – select the first result listed after applying search filters)
  • Test Staff (manual section – select the first result listed after applying search filters)
  • Test Materials (manual section – select the first result listed after applying search filters)
  • Test Administration (manual section – select the first result listed after applying search filters)


  • On Demand Test Administration Training (webinar) (coming soon)
  • ACT Test Administration Training slides (coming soon)

Update Examinee Information


calendarOctober 5 – 18, 2021



Step 5: Administration

During Testing: Have a successful test administration.

Administer the Test


calendarTest Window 1 Standard Time Administration Date: October 5, 2021

calendarTest Window 1 Accommodations Administration Window: October 5 – 8 and October 11 – 15, 2021

calendarTest Window 2 Standard Time Administration Date: October 19, 2021

calendarTest Window 2 Accommodations Administration Window: October 19 – 22 and October 25, 2021



Administration Manuals



Tip: Ensure you are using the correct materials for your test date and type to avoid cancellation of scores.

Tip: If you are testing an examinee authorized for English learner supports, have the ACT-Authorized Bilingual Word-to-Word Dictionaries list handy to verify at check in that the examinee’s dictionary can be used for testing.

Step 6: Transportation

After Testing: Send materials and data back to ACT.

Return Test Materials


calendarTest Window 1 Standard Time Testing Materials Receipt Deadline: October 12, 2021

calendarTest Window 1 Accommodations Testing Materials Receipt Deadline: October 22, 2021

calendarTest Window 2 Standard Time Testing Materials Receipt Deadline: October 26, 2021

calendarTest Window 2 Accommodations Testing Materials Receipt Deadline: November 1, 2021



Tip: Do not return unused answer documents from initial testing. Use those for makeup testing.

Tip: Return answer documents following testing so they arrive at ACT by the receipt deadline listed on the Schedule of Events and can be scored.

Tip: Return all ACT-authorized accommodations materials at the end of the testing window, rather than returning materials for individual examinees as they complete testing.

Tip: If you receive an additional order, write your high school name and code on the return shipping labels.

Step 7: Interpretation

After Testing: Interpret score reports and test data.

Access and Understand Score Reports


calendarSee your Score Report Schedule for release dates




Share Reporting Information with Examinees