In fact, your dread of the ACT Writing section may mean that you’re not even that excited about taking the ACT.
But how would you feel if I told you that I’ve totally figured out how to change that? Today, instead of talking about how to get a perfect 12 on the ACT Essay, we’re actually going to talk about how you can succeed at the universe’s all-time greatest school: Hogwarts.
(In the words of the ACT, students are asked "to develop an argument that puts their own perspective in dialogue with others.")Below is the exact prompt from a recent essay.
Please note that the assignment has been changed frequently, and that any ACT essay prep materials you use may not have been updated to reflect these changes. It will also be given a grade of 2-12 in the following areas: Ideas and Analysis, Development and Support, Organization, & Language Use and Conventions. While you're at it, you can read an example of a perfect-score essay from the makers of the ACT.
But there are other more substantial changes you can make as you approach the rest of your essay.
One thing you can do is develop your ideas for the remainder of the essay. Maybe your previous paragraphs has three supporting ideas for each topic sentence.Big news: in an effort to make the test more accessible, and compete with the new SAT, the ACT has turned its Essay (Writing) section into a multiple-choice test. You are then asked to evaluate the different perspectives on the issue, to provide your own perspective, and to explain the relationship between your perspective and at least one other perspective, using examples, analysis and logic. As you may have heard by now, the ACT is changing the format of its Writing Test (a.k.a. Instead of 30 minutes to write, you are now given 40 minutes to write, and instead of being given only a prompt and an assignment, you will now be provided with a prompt, an assignment, and three different perspectives on the essay.To save time, include just one or two supporting details in your remaining paragraphs.The same goes for the remaining structure of your essay overall.Here are the ACT writing tips you need before test day: You know how you’re going to come up with your thesis. You even know how you’re going to use your vocab and grammar to your advantage… Timed practice is the key to mastering this, but even masters of the ACT essay will occasionally find that they’re running out of time. You look at the clock, and you realize that time’s almost up. If you are running out of ACT writing time, stay focused. You may feel the urge to stop, take a deep breath, and think about what you should do. If you’d been writing at a more careful pace to avoid errors and make good word choices, focus less on these minor aspects of writing. Word choice and errors do affect your score in some ways, but an incomplete essay will get a much lower score than an essay that just has a few mistakes.When you speed up, you will naturally change your approach a little, because you won’t have time to check your writing for the smaller details, as I mentioned above.If you used transitional phrases and sentences earlier in the essay, skip them for the rest of the essay.And even if your introductory paragraph was three, four, or even five sentences long, your concluding paragraph can be just one good sentence– or maybe two. Look at the original passage in the ACT essay prompt.Factual observations are made, and rhetorical questions asked, but no opinions or answers are provided.2) Three different perspectives are given on the issue, usually about two sentences each.