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The ACT According to Anvesh

Meet Anvesh, a Bangalore student finishing up his 12th. Anvesh recently wrote the ACT, an exam that measures students’ college readiness and is accepted alongside the SAT at most U.S. universities. Since the ACT isn’t as common in India as the SAT is, we caught up with Anvesh to hear about his experience.
You’ve recently written the ACT exam and done VERY well! Congratulations! Can you tell us what motivated you to take the ACT?
When I was still new to the admissions process, everyone used to talk about the SAT, but I remember reading somewhere about the ACT. After I got my SAT scores, I didn’t do nearly as well as I had hoped to, so I decided to take a crack at the ACT, and after seeing the structure and format of the exam, it seemed a lot more suited to my likings than the SAT.
How was preparation for the ACT different from the SAT?
When I was studying for the SAT, I focused on vocabulary and reading comprehension because those two are the more difficult portions on the exam. I also did more drills instead of focusing on the actual format of the test. However, when I took the ACT, I focused on getting used to the exam pattern and especially being able to complete the sections in the limited time. I wrote over 12 practice tests in 20 days. I focused on the Science portion because just like most other people, it was the more difficult section for me.
So when test day came how did you feel?
No matter how much you prepare, you still have the nerves when you’re taking such an important exam. I was confident that my constant practice would get me through, but I was still kind of nervous.
Was the test-taking experience any different than your experience taking the SAT?
The experience I had with the ACT was much more relaxing and calming. There weren’t more than 30 people who showed up to the test, and we were seated in a huge hall, with a big table for each one of us to work on. The fact that the ACT doesn’t make you jump around sections like the SAT does also is nice to know because you don’t have to keep going from one section to another. Once you’re done with a section, you don’t have to think about it again!
And the results…did you anticipate doing as well as you did?
Yes, I did better than I expected! With only 25 days of preparation and it being the first time writing the ACT, I expected this try to be more of a learning experience so I can be prepared when I take it again. However, the score I got was good enough so I didn’t have to repeat.
What words of advice do you have for students who are considering which standardized test to take?
Well, each person is different! There might be some people who do brilliantly on the SAT while others can ace the ACT. In my opinion, if you are good at math and science, and you can pace yourself properly, the ACT test can work for you. If the Science section baffles you (as it does to many people), go for the SAT> Regardless of which standardized test you decide, you still need to have a good base in Reading Comprehension, Vocabulary, and grammar.
If you’d like to learn more about the ACT, visit the website or get in touch with us at the IKC!

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