Here at OnCampus College Planning, we’ve received a number of questions about the state-mandated ACT Exam for public high school juniors in Wisconsin, which will take place on February 20, 2019. Here’s what you need to know.

How do I register for the state-mandated ACT exam on February 20?

As a parent, you don’t need to do a thing. Unlike all other ACT exam dates, for which you or your student must register online by yourself, the school facilitates registration for the state-mandated ACT exam date. Your student will be involved in the school-led registration process at your high school. Unlike all other ACT Exam dates, Wisconsin public high schools take care of registering public high school juniors for this state-mandated ACT exam, with the help of junior students who complete their registration forms at school. There is no cost to parents or students for this state-mandated ACT exam date registration. The exam costs are covered by your public high school.

Who is the state-mandated ACT Exam on February 20 for?

state mandated act exam wiAll public high school junior students. If you attend a private high school, your high school is NOT included in the state-mandated ACT on February 20, 2019.

Where is the February 20 state-mandated ACT exam held?

If you’re a public high school junior, your ACT exam on February 20 will be administered at your high school. Watch for instructions to come from your high school administrators or guidance counselors about this upcoming exam and details specific to your high school, like at-school registration, room location, start time, etc.

Is this February 20 ACT exam a “normal” ACT?

Yes. The ACT administered on February 20 is comprised of the same subject tests as any ACT exam date, and it includes the writing section, which is optional as part of typical ACT exam registrations. The subject tests included are: English, Math, Reading, Science, Writing. The ACT with writing is a paper and pencil test.

Wisconsin high schools will be certified as ACT® state testing sites. Scores from the administration of the ACT with writing (if taken with ACT Standard Time or ACT-approved accommodations) can be used by students for a variety of purposes including college admission, scholarships, course placement and NCAA eligibility.

What if I need special accommodations for taking the ACT?

If you’ve already taken the ACT prior to February 20 and qualified for special testing accommodations, you will also be eligible for special testing accommodations for the February 20 ACT. If this is your first time taking the ACT, you should talk to your school’s ACT test coordinator or guidance counselor to complete the necessary forms to secure eligibility for special testing accommodations.

What if I cannot take the state-mandated ACT exam on February 20?

state mandated act exam wisconsinAccording to the Wisconsin Department of Public instruction website, emergency test dates are for specific circumstances where schools were not able to test on initial or makeup test dates due to weather emergency or other incident. In the case of a legitimate absence, the following makeup and emergency test dates are available. Check with your high school guidance counselor on your eligibility to take the ACT during one of these makeup or emergency test dates:

  • March 12-18: Makeup accommodations testing window for ACT with writing – grade 11 (weekdays only)
  • April 2: Emergency test date for ACT with writing – grade 11
  • April 2-8: Emergency accommodations testing window for ACT with writing – grade 11 (weekdays only)

If I’ve already taken the ACT, do I still need to take the state-mandated ACT exam on February 20?

Yup. Think of it as an extra chance to earn the score you want. In addition to providing all public high school students with a free opportunity to take the ACT exam, the high schools also benefit from having the score report information for this state-mandated ACT exam.

When and how do I access my scores from the state-mandated ACT exam on February 20?

According to ACT representatives, your February 20 ACT scores will be sent to you by mail 2-8 weeks from the date you take this exam.

Unlike other ACT dates where you register yourself for the ACT exam by setting up an online account at, you will first receive your official score report from the state-mandated ACT in the mail at the address you provide when you register for the exam at school. Your scores will be posted online 2-3 weeks after you receive your official score report in the mail. If you do not have an ACT web account, you will need to create one using the ACT ID printed on your score report when creating your account.

If you’ve taken the ACT before and you already have an ACT online account, your February 20 scores will be associated with your existing account based on completing your February 20 registration with the same name, birthdate, address and other personal information. However, there may be a delay. According to ACT representatives, from the date you receive your February 20 scores in the mail, it could be 2-3 weeks until your online account reflects your February 20 scores.

How do I submit scores from the February ACT to colleges I may be interested in attending?

Your February 20 scores will not automatically be shared with schools. During registration FOR ANY ACT, when you are given an opportunity to select schools you’d like your scores to be sent to, OnCampus College Planning recommends that you NOT select any schools. By doing so, you control which schools receive which scores at the time when you apply for colleges. You may want to retake the ACT to earn a better score, and we believe it’s wise to wait until you’ve earned the ACT score you’re happy with to decide who to share those scores with.

Is there a cost for submitting my scores from the Feb 20 ACT to colleges?

When you’re applying to colleges, you log onto your ACT account and follow the “Send My Scores” instructions. It costs about $14 per school to submit your ACT scores to colleges. However, we believe this is money well spent, since it enables you to control who receives which scores.

Juniors have plenty of time to submit ACT scores during the college applications process your senior year. You don’t need to make those decisions now. We recommend you NOT select schools to receive your ACT scores as part of your registration for the ACT exam.

What is the ACT WorkKeys, and is it required?

Yes, the ACT WorkKeys is required for public high school juniors. If you don’t take it the day the school administers it, they will require you to make it up at a later date. It’s typically administered the day following the state-mandated ACT exam.

According to the Wisconsin DPI website, The ACT WorkKeys:

  • Contains the following tests: Applied Math, Graphic Literacy (formerly Locating Information), and Workplace Documents (Formerly Reading for Information).
  • Is a paper and pencil assessment used to help students understand how they can improve their career readiness skills and helps employers determine whether individuals are qualified for positions.
  • Can enable students to earn National Career Readiness Certificates (NCRC) which are recognized by business and industry nationwide. Through obtaining a National Career Readiness Certificate, students have a clear way to demonstrate their abilities to future employers.

I have other questions about the state-mandated ACT exam. Who should I contact?

We are always happy to help, and if you ask a question for which we don’t have the answer, we’ll track it down for you or point you in the right direction. Email us with any additional questions you might have.

Your high school guidance counselor is also a great source of information about the state-mandated ACT exam.

What if I’m not happy with my score on the state-mandated ACT exam?

Great news! The ACT has exam dates throughout the year that you can register for yourself at These occur in April, June, July, September, October, December and in early February. Deadlines for registration are typically 4-5 weeks prior to the exam date. If you need help with preparing for the ACT and putting your best foot forward to earn a score you’re happy with, we can help. Learn more about our ACT Test Prep services. You can also schedule a free consult at any time to see how we can help with the ACT or the college planning process.