ACT English Test


The ACT English test is comprised of 75 questions which cover both written skills and rhetorical skills. The written skills include punctuation, grammar and usage, and sentence structure, while the rhetorical skills test strategy, organization, and style. There are five passages in this section, with a set of questions following each passage.
One common question type on the ACT Reading test is choosing alternative text in the place of an underlined phrase. You must choose the phrase which best fits in. On many questions, an option for “no change” is listed, meaning the underlined passage or idea shouldn’t be changed.
Students are given 45 minutes to complete this test. The 75 questions are scored as a whole, and also scored in two separate sub-scores: Usage and Mechanics (40 questions), and Rhetorical Skills (35 questions).

Tips for this section

  • Pace Youself – just like all the other sections, pacing yourself in the ACT English test is important. With 75 questions to be completed in 45 minutes, it’s recommended you spend about a 90 seconds skimming through a passage before you start on the questions. This will leave you with 30 seconds to answer each of the questions.
  • Carefully examine the underlined phrases – It is key to examine an underlined portion type question before making a quick decision. The topics and writing style for each of the five passages on the test can vary to a large degree. Some questions will ask what will least likely be the best answer for an underlined portion.
  • Questions without an underlined portion – The last section of questions in each passage will test readers on the passage as a whole rather than an individual line. These questions will be clearly set apart from the others with a separate set of directions.
  • Differences in answer choices – Many questions on the test will involve more than just one element of writing. Be cautious when selecting an answer which corrects one aspect, but at the same time causes a separate error.

English Quiz

Answer questions using multiple choice