ACT Study Guide/Math

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The ACT Mathematics section is the second test on the ACT. It consists of 60 questions, which must be completed within 60 minutes. Unlike other sections of the ACT, calculators are allowed in this section. In addition, there are 5 multiple choices in the Math section, whereas there are 4 multiple choices in the other sections. It is not known why this is. Like the rest of the ACT, there is NO penalty for incorrectly answering a question. So, it is in your favor to do so. The ACT Mathematics exam tests the following six areas:

  • Pre-Algebra (approx. 14 questions)
  • Elementary Algebra (approx. 10 questions)
  • Intermediate Algebra (approx. 9 questions)
  • Coordinate Geometry (approx. 9 questions)
  • Plane Geometry (approx. 14 questions)
  • Trigonometry (approx. 4 questions)

Pre-Algebra[edit]

Pre-Algebra is one of the essential topics to know for the math section.

Elementary Algebra[edit]

Intermediate Algebra[edit]

Coordinate Geometry[edit]

Plane Geometry[edit]

Trigonometry[edit]

With only 4 questions, trigonometry is not one of the most important math topics on the ACT. However, if math is one of your better subjects or if you're shooting for a high score, read on:

SOHCAHTOA is the acronym for the trigonometric ratios. These are extremely important! If you don't remember this, SOHCAHTOA is: Sine=Opposite/Hypotenuse Cosine=Adjacent/Hypotenuse Tangent=Opposite/Adjacent

Graphs of trigonometric functions often make up one or two of the ACT Math Questions. Remember that the normal period for a sine/cosine function is 2π/360°, whereas the tangent graph has a normal period of π/180˚.