Should the ACT be timed?

OPINION BY MITCHELL BLACKBURN

The ACT is a college readiness exam designed to test the students skills. An ACT test approximately takes 4 hours to take, but should it be timed? The ACT has 4 sections; Math, English, Reading, and Science. Math has 60 questions and students are given 60 minutes to take it. English takes 45 minutes to complete. Reading and science each take 35 minutes.

The argument is that to see a student’s full potential on the test you should give them an unlimited amount of time to complete. The students are under pressure and worry they won’t complete the test, because they are not given enough time. Plus, this test is a major key for acceptance into college. If the college is trying to measure how smart the individual is then why not give them unlimited time?

Secondly, say the student finishes early, the ACT rules state that you are not allowed to leave. If the student wants to leave they should be allowed, instead of being held hostage in a classroom that is already stressing you out. As long as you give your best, that is all that should matter.

timed-tests
Students are stressed out by testing time limits. Photo courtesy of MCT Campus.

Just think how much better scores there would be if students were given more time, or how much stress would be taken away by the amount of time given. Overall, if you want to see the students best, you should give them as much time as they need.