DeKalb County Juniors will take the ACT February 20th


Plainview Students ACTIn just 7 days (February 20th) all DeKalb County Juniors will take the ACT test with writing.  The ACT test is given free to all Juniors in the DeKalb County system.  Students and parents need to be prepared to have their students ready for the test.  Mountain Valley News would like to give a few quick tips on how students can prepare for this test.

What is the ACT with writing?

The ACT is an entrance exam used by most colleges and universities to make admissions decisions. It is a multiple-choice, pencil-and-paper test administered by ACT, Inc.

The purpose of the ACT test is to measure a high school student’s readiness for college and provide colleges with one common data point that can be used to compare all applicants. College admissions officers will review standardized test scores alongside your high school GPA, the classes you took in high school, letters of recommendation from teachers or mentors, extracurricular activities, admissions interviews, and personal essays. How important ACT scores are in the college application process varies from school to school.

Overall, the higher you score on the ACT the more options for attending and paying for college will be available to you.  Highest ACT scores can also help students in DeKalb County to gain access to automatically qualifying for college class placement at Northeast Alabama Community College and Snead State College.

The highest possible score for the ACT is 36, and the National average is 21.  The total testing time is 2 hrs, 55 minutes (plus 40 minutes with writing).  The cost of the ACT test if taken outside of the public school window is $67.00 if taken with writing.  This spring test is free to all juniors.

Calculator Policy

ACT has a set standard policy for the calculators that can be used on the test.  The image below will provide the information a student or parent may need to see if your student can use their calculator.  Some schools provide calculators for students who may not have a calculator or may have a calculator they cannot use on the test.

ACT Caculator Policy

How Dekalb Students Can Prepare

Dekalb Juniors who will be taken the test should consider the following tips for test day preparation:

  • Get plenty of rest.  Be sure to sleep at least 8 hours, so do not stay up late on your phone or watching Netflix.
  • Eat Breakfast.  It is important that students eat a good breakfast.  Students who eat a good breakfast have been shown to score higher on the ACT test.
  • Dress Comfortable.  Always follow your school’s guidelines, but it is best to dress as comfortable as possible.  The ACT test is a timed test.  Testing endurance can be enhanced by dressing as comfortable as your school will allow.
  • De-stress.  If a student has a tendency to stress over a test the student should be aware of techniques that will help de-stress during the test.  Students who find themselves highly stressed should stop, take ten deep breaths, clear their mind, and then resume the test.
  • Be Focused.  Students should be prepared to focus as much as possible.  Block out any distractions mentally that may hinder a clear mind.
  • Use of Strategy.  A students best strategy is to answer the questions they feel confident about.  After this a student can then return to the questions they may be less confident in and use strategies like eliminating answers they may feel are incorrect.
  • Be Aware of Time.  Students will need to be aware of the time required for each section.  Be sure to use your time wisely, and to review any questions they may not be sure of.

February 20th Attendance

It is important for all Juniors to be in attendance on February 20th.  If the students absolutely cannot be at school on February 20th, the make-up testing date is in April.  It is important for students to be in attendance, and be prepared to test.  Each school’s faculty, counselors, and administrators have been working to prepare the school for the testing day.

School Impact

DeKalb County schools want the best from their students.  Parents, please help encourage your student to do their best.  Not only will their performance on the test lead to the possibility of college monies, but also will affect the school.  School leaders and teachers want the best for their students.  By displaying high performance not only will it help your student on scholarship applications, but will also help the school to find areas where work may need to be done.  Highest student performance is a win-win for schools and students.

Mountain Valley News would like to wish the best of luck to all Juniors who are taking the test on February 20, 2019.