10 Mar 2021

ACT At-Home Testing Update

Back in November of 2020, ACT alluded to the imminent release of an online, at-home testing alternative for students struggling to take the ACT in person due to COVID-related barriers. However, ACT recently announced — definitively this time — that an at-home test will not be rolled out this year.

ACT CEO Janet Godwin notes that between extensive research and collaboration with partner organizations, ACT has “laid the groundwork for remote proctoring, but more development time is needed to launch an accessible, secure, and customer-centric option.” ACT cites their commitment to “equitable access to remote proctoring” as the reason for the delay, as they work to ensure their remote proctoring options suit the needs of students and institutions alike. 

In the meantime, both ACT and the College Board are striving to keep students as up-to-date as possible on test center closures, which have disrupted testing schedules throughout the past year. Students can register for the April 17th ACT test date through March 12th (late registration runs from March 12th – March 26th). If cancellations occur between the date a student registers and March 26th, students will be able to request a change at no cost to them through their MyACT portal. At Sentia, we have many students, particularly those located in California, who have experienced closures and opted to sign up to test at centers several hours from home where seats are available. Though these solutions are not ideal, given that remote proctoring will not become an option this year, those who are eager to include test scores reflecting their academic abilities with their college applications may need to travel (safely) in order to take the ACT or SAT. 

ACT is also ramping up their notification practices to ensure that students are notified promptly of any test center closures that affect their testing plan. Students can expect to receive an email notification if there is a test center closure, if ACT moves them from a closed or at-capacity test center to an open test center, and when test scores are released. 

As for the College Board, keep an eye on this SAT Test Center Closings database if you have plans to take the SAT in the coming months. Additionally, we recommend that students contact their SAT testing centers directly to confirm that they are still open. The College Board will continue to contact students directly if their chosen testing centers are closed, but it would be best to get out ahead of this and reschedule if necessary, in case there’s a delay in the College Board contacting those who have been affected by test center closures. 

We know that last-minute testing disruptions and closures can be overwhelming. We want to help ensure that your testing experience goes as smoothly as possible. If that means finding a new testing location, formulating a test prep plan, or working through testing strategies, we are always happy to help. At Sentia, we don’t just tutor, we’ll be with you every step of the way.

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