Complete ACT Online Prep –
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the exact steps to getting started with Online ACT Prep?
To enroll, just click here. First, you choose a login name – this can be either the student or parent email, as it doesn’t matter. Then, choose a password, ideally one that can be shared between the parent and student. Then, enter your payment information – your card won’t be charged during the free trial.
Right afterwards, you have full access to the program! If you want to start learning immediately, you are absolutely free to. We have no lengthy manual onboarding process, no mandatory wait periods. Yet if you’re not ready to start yet for a few days, that’s fine too. Simply log back in in a few days and pick up where you left off.
How many hours do you need to finish the program? How many weeks do I need, minimum or maximum?
Our Complete prep program has a baseline time of 40 hours total. This is the minimum recommended amount of time to get the most from our program. For example, if you plan to take the test in two months (60 days) then the student is encouraged to spend about an hour a day on the program.
Beyond the minimum, we have much more content than 40 hours available – with thousands of practice questions and detailed lessons, you can spend hundreds of hours learning with PrepScholar. Our program has worked well for students in as few as 3 weeks or helped them for as long as 2 years.
Is this all online? Do I need to drive to a prep center? What other equipment do I need?
The program is 100% all online, with the exception of real paper practice tests we mail you. You do NOT need to drive anywhere or meet in any prep centers.
All you need for our program is an internet connection and a modern computer – generally, any computer from the last 10 years is fine.
Do I need to pre-schedule time for the program? Can I work on the program any time I like?
You can use our program just like you use the rest of the Internet: you do NOT need to schedule anything beforehand. Everything is accessible whenever you like, whether it’s 6AM, 4PM, or 11PM. Work as many hours per week as you’d like, or as few as you’d like. Pause the program whenever you’d like, even in the middle of a lesson or test.
Can I study immediately? Are there any “waiting periods” like grading after a lesson or test that will slow down my study?
You can start studying immediately. Generally, grading is done automatically by our computer in seconds or less, so you won’t wait to see your results. You will always have something to do until you complete the program.
Do you teach strategies as well as content?
Yes. In each lesson we go over baseline content, but we also go over common ways the SAT and ACT trick students, and how to strategize around those tricks.
Also, we have an entire set of lessons geared towards general strategies. These cover a range of topics, like how to skip and guess on questions correctly, how to avoid careless mistakes, and how to deal with time pressure.
How can you hold the student accountable to studying? I’m a parent and want to make sure my child uses your program.
We record every hour that your student spends on our platform, and we give both the parent and the student a weekly progress report summarizing time spent on our program. Our timer counts only actual time spent learning, and not time browsing Facebook, chatting, or reading email. Our automatic weekly report makes sure everyone is on the same track.
How can I see student progress through the program?
Our program has a full history of lessons completed. For any given skill and lesson, you can see whether the student mastered that lesson, was assigned to retake it, or was downgraded. You further can see a line graph of your student’s skill over time.
What does the Complete study program look like exactly, hour by hour?
Our program is very flexible: you can pause it at any time and pick it up anytime later. This outline is a common usage pattern for our program:
In the first ten minutes, you create an account, enter payment information, and complete a brief survey about what you want to improve. At this point, you can start the program whenever you’d like. If you’re in a rush, start within seconds; if you’re busy, you can delay the start for many weeks.
Whenever you are ready to study, you can log in online at PrepScholar. In the first hour, you are given a 60-question diagnostic test that takes about an hour to finish. This diagnostic will let us estimate your skill in every skill area very precisely. This way, you only get lessons geared to your level.
After your diagnostic is finished, our program computes the most optimal study plan for you, so you make the fastest progress in the least time. Our program then assigns you lessons.
In hours two to ten, you take 8 lessons. All lessons are online and take about 60 minutes on average. There are three parts to each lesson. The first part is a 20 minute teaching portion, where a clearly written text or video will teach you a concept (for example, “Easy Math Circle Problems”). In this example, the lesson will go over the mathematical concepts, like what a radius and circumference is, and their relationship to the circle. The lesson will also go over related strategies – for example, common tricks used on the ACT for radius and diameter.
The second part of each lesson is focused practice. You are given 20 minutes to finish 20 realistic problems. These 20 problems are all focused on the skills you just learned; you progress rapidly by training the same skill over and over. The final 20 minutes are spent on reviewing your mistakes. We explain why you got a quiz question wrong, and you reflect on the question to fully understand the underlying reason you got a problem wrong.
After each lesson, the computer takes a few seconds to update your estimated skill. If you didn’t pass a skill, the computer will assign you an easier lesson in that same skill so you learn at the right level. If you did very well, your next lesson in that skill will be harder. Our program constantly updates your skill estimate as you do lessons, so you always get the right lesson. In fact, you can see graphs of your skill progress to visualize how you’re improving over time.
In hours 11 to 14, you do a real practice test . We send all our standard customers a book full of paper official real practice tests from the past. We believe that actual interaction with real questions in a realistic timed environment is a critical piece of a complete prep program. You then spend these four hours doing a full test on paper. The test is timed, and the student may break the test into multiple sessions. After you take the test on paper, you enter your answers into our computer system, and we grade it immediately for you. You can also upload an essay for a PrepScholar instructor to grade your essay by hand and give you custom feedback on how to improve.
From the 15th hour onwards, you cycle between doing a number of lessons and doing practice tests. Through this process, you will be thoroughly prepared for the SAT or ACT.
Note: The numbers above are intended to give you a rough guide of approximate time spent, and numbers above are not guaranteed to be exact. For example, whether a lesson has 20 practice problems or 40 depends on the exact lesson. Whether you do 8 lessons or 14 before the first practice test depends on your exact situation. The above is only meant to be a sketch of typical progress.
How can I make sure my student will work well in your online environment?
Our program has been proven to increase student scores by many points. The best way to make sure the online format and our powerful method of improving your ACT score is to really try it yourself. No amount of description can match the understanding you gain from actually trying out PrepScholar.
To aid in that, we have a generous 5-day free trial program. Use our program without paying a cent for up to five days. Best of all, our trial doesn’t start until you submit the diagnostic test and receive your custom prep program.
Is the price displayed in the pricing page all-inclusive? Do you have any extra fees, charges, or required supplies that I need to buy?
The price included is all-inclusive. It includes all materials, fees, book(s) that will be shipped to you, and applicable taxes. There are no mandatory fees, surcharges, books, or other items that you need to purchase in addition to the base price you see when you sign up.
Complete ACT Online Prep