You can register to take the ACT on these dates in 2023-2024.

ACT Test Date Registration Deadline Late Fee Deadline Standby & Photo Upload Deadline
April 15, 2023 March 10 March 24 April 7
June 10, 2023 May 5 May 19 June 2
July 15, 2023 June 16 June 23 July 7
September 9, 2023 August 4 August 18 September 1
October 28, 2023 September 22 October 6 October 20
December 9, 2023 November 3 November 17 December 1
February 10, 2024 January 5 January 19  
April 13, 2024 March 8 March 22  
June 8, 2024 May 3 May 17  
July 13, 2024 June 7 June 21  

Aside from these national test dates, many schools offer the ACT during the school day, especially in states where it is the state-mandated test for juniors. 

Check with your school counselor or state education website to see if and when your school offers the tests. These tests usually begin at the end of February (states including Kansas, Ohio, and Arkansas) and until mid-April (Wyoming, Montana, and South Carolina). 

What does the ACT test cost in 2023? 

Check the ACT website for the most current fee schedule. 

Full ACT test (no writing) $66
Full ACT (with writing) $91
Test option change $25
Late fee $36
Additional score reports $18

If you are a student who is eligible for Federal Free and Reduced lunch programs, the ACT offers waivers for up to four ACT tests and unlimited score reports

When should you take the ACT? 

Now that you know when the ACT tests are (and how much they cost), how do you decide which test date is right for you?

First, it’s important to know how many times you should take the ACT. Very rarely does anyone get their best score the first time. We recommend that you take the ACT at least four times: twice junior year and twice senior year. But deciding which test dates are best can vary. 

Here are a few questions to ask as you plan out your ACT testing schedule. 

Will your school offer the ACT? 

If they do, that means you get a free testing opportunity. But that doesn’t mean you should take it easy or wait until your school test date to think about the ACT. Better yet, make the school-offered ACT your second test. Sign up to take either the December or February ACT prior to your school’s test so you’re prepared for the format of the test, the timing, and the content. It is also a great idea to take the test on the national Saturday date closest to your school’s testing date—this way you get double the testing out of your preparation!

What’s your college application timeline?

Make a list of the colleges you are considering and write down their application deadlines. See when you need to have taken the ACT in order to submit your application. Most colleges will accept ACT scores from seniors through the December test of their fall semester (some even consider the February test from spring semester), but it’s worth checking to make sure you have all the pieces of your application in place to get into your college choices—don’t forget to consider early applications as well! Also check on when scholarships are awarded. Some schools only disburse a limited amount of money, so you want to get your name under consideration before the funds run out!

What other commitments do you have? 

While you shouldn’t put off the ACT because of other commitments, extracurricular activities, or your academic load, it is worth looking at your schedule to consider what else might be happening at the same time as the test. If you’re an athlete, you might not have your best test the day after a long drive back from an away game. If you are a musician or an actor, try to avoid a test date directly after a big performance. Consider your schedule and choose which four ACT tests you’ll take over the course of your junior and senior years. 


Think you’re ready? There’s one more step after you choose your ACT test dates: maximize your scores with ACT test prep. Practice and prepare so you can do your best on the test!