Retaking the ACT: Your FAQs Answered

Should I take the ACT again? 

How Many Times Can You Take the ACT? 

There is no limit to how many times students can take the ACT test. On average it takes students 2-3 times to achieve their testing goals. Retesting gives students a chance to adjust their study plan and tackle areas they want to improve. 

Can You Retake Parts of the ACT?

Currently, students cannot retake specific sections of the ACT, but they can earn a superscore. Focus on where you can improve while studying for your next attempt, then use your best subject scores from each ACT test attempt to create an official ACT Superscore. Learn more about the benefits of superscoring

What is an ACT Superscore?  

An ACT Superscore, also known as superscoring, takes the average of the four best subject scores from each ACT test attempt and counts it as your official score. One of the benefits of retaking the ACT test is  automatic superscore reporting for students who have taken the test more than once, which can be used when applying to colleges. 

When Can You Retake the ACT?

Students wishing to retake the ACT can sign up for any National ACT test. Before the next test attempt, we strongly recommend that students review previous test scores and create a study plan to improve their scores. Check out ACT’s free test prep resources

Students who participated in ACT District Testing may also test again via any National ACT test. Use the same MyACT account when registering. All scores will be available in your account and will help you build your superscore! Keep in mind, some District Testing schools offer retake opportunities for their students, so check with your school to see what’s available. 

How Much Does it Cost to Retake the ACT?

Students wanting to take the ACT again, with or without the writing section, can register on There is no separate registration for those wanting to retake the ACT test. ACT offers test fee waivers to eligible help students to help pay the registration fees for up to four ACT tests. Learn more about ACT test fee waivers

Should You Retake the ACT to Improve Your Score?

On average, for testers who received an initial score between 13 and 29, the second Composite score increases by one point.    

When you wonder if one point is worth it to retake the ACT, remember that one point could make a big difference. It could impact your eligibility for scholarships and affect your college admission. 

Not convinced?  Here are some additional reasons you should consider retesting:  

You had problems during the test.  

Things can go wrong. Maybe you forgot your calculator or didn’t understand the directions. If things didn’t go as planned, you probably didn’t perform your best and may want to retest.  

You weren’t feeling your best. 

Feeling sick or lack of sleep can impact your ability to think clearly and fully focus on the task at hand.

You didn’t feel prepared.

Did the test date sneak up on you? Sometimes students register for the test with the intent of completing test prep… but for some reason or another, it just doesn’t happen. Commit to improving your score by taking time to practice for the test and try again. Consider using free or paid test prep resources offered by ACT.  

Your nerves got the best of you.

Having nerves before a big test is perfectly normal. Students can put a lot of pressure on themselves to achieve a high score. Don’t let test anxiety get in the way of your score, consider taking a practice test at home using a similar testing environment to help with some of the nerves.

You know you can do better.

If your score didn’t line up with your expected performance, identify areas you can improve on and consider giving the test another shot. 

You've learned more. 

Since taking the ACT test, you have continued to learn more in school. ACT questions are based on the core curriculum, so you are likely more prepared for the test!  

Get a Copy of the Questions and Answers from
Your ACT Test with Test Information Release (TIR)

Improve your scores and boost your test prep with a deep dive analysis on your past performance.

  • Planning to test again? More students who retested after purchasing their TIR improved their score, and their score gains were twice as high on average as those who did not participate in TIR or other test prep.
  • The TIR includes the test answer key, a copy of the questions, and copy of the answers you provided, and other information about your performance. 
  • Only available for the national exam (i.e. Saturday testing) for September, April, and June tests, but can be purchased up to 6 months after a qualifying test date.

Why Test? The Value of the ACT

Check out this video to learn how the ACT is one of the most powerful tools you can leverage as you pursue your college and career journey. 

This session will give an in-depth look at the importance of testing in the current admissions landscape and how ACT scores can help win scholarships and secure placement into the college and courses that are right for you. 

From the right school to the right major to the right career — learn how the ACT is the right tool to help you get where your dreams will carry you! 

Learn More About ACT Retesting

Retaking the ACT gives you another opportunity to improve your score and strengthen your college or scholarship applications. For more information on preparing for the ACT test, download this FREE ebook: Before, During, and After: Three Stages of Taking a College Entrance Exam

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Additional Testing Resources

Check out these articles to get additional advice on testing, and discover more about what the ACT can do for you.