ACT Maths Syllabus: How to Prepare for ACT Math? Image
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ACT Maths Syllabus: How to Prepare for ACT Math?

Yocket Editorial Team
5 mins read

With 60 questions to be answered in 60 minutes, the math section is one of the most important and critical section of your ACT test. The ACT math syllabus primarily measures the mathematical and analytical skills that one acquires during his or his  high school years. It consists of 2 sections: Calculator and No-Calculator. 

In this blog we take you through the ACT math syllabus, important topics and also some tips to get a better understanding of the ACT math rules. 

Table of Contents

  1. What is the ACT Math Section?
  2. ACT Math Syllabus
  3. ACT Math Required Skills and Grading
  4. How to Prepare for ACT Math? 
  5. Frequently Asked Questions about ACT Math: Syllabus and Preparation

What is the ACT Math Section?

Before digging deep into the syllabus or question types of the ACT Math section, let's become acquainted with its structure or format.

  • To commence with, it is the ACT's second component.
  • The ACT Maths is a multiple-choice-based section. Students must select one of five multiple-choice answers.
  • It constitutes one-quarter of the overall score. This section, like the others, has 36 points.
  • The ACT Math subject is divided into six components.
  • The ACT math exam consists of 60 questions and lasts 60 minutes. This gives students a limited time of one minute per question.
  • The calculator is permitted in ACT Math, but only under defined conditions.

Suggested: Preparation Book for Math ACT

ACT Math Syllabus

The ACT Math section is divided into six areas, as noted above: Pre-Algebra, Elementary Algebra, Intermediate Algebra, Coordinate Geometry, Plane Geometry, and Trigonometry. Before we proceed, let's take a closer look at these ACT Math subjects and what they encompass.

ACT Math Topics 

As previously stated, the math section of the subject is divided into six sections. The ACT math topics list is as follows:

  • Pre-Algebra
  • Elementary Algebra
  • Intermediate Algebra
  • Coordinate Geometry
  • Plane Geometry
  • Trigonometry

The math part contains a total of 60 problems, which are divided into the categories listed above.

The question bifurcation is as follows:


No of questions


14 questions

Elementary Algebra

10 questions

Intermediate Algebra

9 questions

Coordinate Geometry

9 questions

Plane Geometry

14 questions


4 questions

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Let's have a look at what each topic that ACT math test covers.

ACT Math Questions by Topic

To answer ACT math questions, reasoning abilities must be developed. Topic-specific ACT math practice questions allow students to cover a wide range of topics.

Within the topics, the following concepts are covered.


  • Basic operations using whole numbers, decimals, fractions, and integers
  • Place value
  • Square roots and approximations
  • The concept of exponents
  • Scientific notation
  • Factors
  • Ratio, proportion, and percent
  • Linear equations in one variable
  • Absolute value and ordering numbers by value
  • Elementary counting techniques and simple probability
  • Data collection, representation, and interpretation
  • Understanding simple descriptive statistics

Elementary Algebra

  •  Properties of exponents and square roots
  • Evaluation of algebraic expressions through substitution
  • Using variables to express functional relationships
  • Understanding algebraic operations
  • The solution of quadratic equations by factoring

Intermediate Algebra

  • The quadratic formula
  • Rational and radical expressions
  • Absolute value equations and inequalities
  • Sequences and patterns
  • Systems of equations
  • Quadratic inequalities
  • Functions and modelling
  • Matrices
  • Roots of polynomials
  • Complex numbers

Coordinate Geometry

  • Graphing inequalities,
  • Slope,
  • Parallel and perpendicular lines,
  • Distance,
  • Midpoints,
  • Conics.

Plane Geometry

  • Properties and relations of plane figures, including angles and relations among perpendicular and parallel lines
  • Properties of circles, triangles, rectangles, parallelograms, and trapezoids
  • Transformations
  • The concept of proof and proof techniques
  • Volume
  • Applications of geometry to three dimensions


  • Trigonometric relations in right triangles,
  • Values and properties of trigonometric functions,
  • Graphing trigonometric functions,
  • Modeling using trigonometric functions,
  • Use of trigonometric identities,
  • Solving trigonometric equations.

Suggested: Free ACT Prep Resources

So, this is the basic overview of ACT math questions. Now let us have a look at the skills and grading system of ACT math:

ACT Math Required Skills and Grading

For the math portion, 9 results are calculated: one for the section overall and eight for precise mathematical knowledge. 

Advanced Math

This area includes the more modern math that students are studying, beginning with the use of algebra as a generic method of defining and solving equations. This area is subdivided into five sections.

  • Quantity and number

Understanding of real and complex number systems is required. Numerical numbers of various types, such as integer and rational exponents, vectors, and matrices, will be understood and reasoned with by students.

  • Algebra

Multiple sorts of expressions are solved, graphed, and modelled. Linear, polynomial, radical, and exponential relationships will all be used by students. The student will solve systems of equations, even if they are represented by simple matrices, and apply what they've learned to real-world problems.

  • Functions

This group of questions assesses your understanding of function definition, notation, representation, and application. Linear, radical, piecewise, polynomial, and logarithmic functions are examples of questions that may be asked. Students will modify and translate functions as well as identify and apply key graph elements.

  • Geometry

Determine and use shape and solid knowledge, such as congruence and similarity relationships, as well as surface area and volume measurements. Understand object composition and use trigonometric ratios and conic section equations to find missing values in triangles, circles, and other forms.

  • Probability & Statistics

Apply and analyze data collecting methods, interpret and model relationships in a scatterplot, and estimate probabilities, including sample spaces.

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Combining Core Competencies

This section assesses your capacity to form and apply your knowledge and skills to more difficult issues. Rates and percentages, proportional relationships, area, surface area, volume, average and median, and expressing numbers in various ways are among the ideas covered in the questions. Tackle challenges that require you to combine abilities in a chain of actions, use skills in different situations, grasp connections, and demonstrate proficiency.


All questions about creating, analyzing, comprehending, estimating, and enhancing models fall within this category. Every question is also included in the above-mentioned reporting criteria. This domain assesses how well you apply modeling capabilities across a variety of mathematical disciplines.


Let's get started with our preparation now that we've assessed the skills required, the ACT math rules, and the manner pupils are graded.

Suggested: ACT Exam Pattern and Syllabus

Now let us have a look at a few ACT math tricks to guide you with your ACT math test prep:

How to Prepare for ACT Math?

You must have an ACT strategy to excel in the section of math ACT. Here are a few tips through which you can score high in your ACT math exam:

  • Practice: Practice helps you cover majorly all aspects of the types of questions that can be asked in the exam. Practising a variety of questions also boosts your confidence and helps you better prepare yourself for the actual exam.
  • Time Management: Practicing not only prepares you for a variety of questions but also helps you time yourself. You only have a minute per question, so it is important to use time efficiently.
  • Do not Rush: If you rush to answer, it may make you prone to making mistakes. If you are having difficulty answering a question, move on to the next. Do not get stuck on one question. Remember you have another 39 questions in your basket, waiting to be answered.
  • Practice Math Formulas: But just cramming the formula isn’t enough, you have to be able to apply it in answering as well. You may prepare a formula sheet containing all the necessary formulas, to have a brief overview before the exam. Do not forget to practice graphs and their interpretation.
  • Hire a Tutor: In case self-study and online practice tests are convenient options for you, you may hire a private tutor for your SAT math preparation. 

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So that was all about ACT math syllabus. Many colleges and universities abroad give importance to ACT scores of the applicants.  aim for a score of at least 30 score points to gain admission to top-ranked universities. Contact our Yocket counselors right now for any advice or support!

Frequently Asked Questions about ACT Math: Syllabus and Preparation

Ques. What type of math is on the ACT?

Ans. Students are asked high school level math questions on topics like Pre-Algebra, Elementary Algebra, Intermediate Algebra, Coordinate Geometry, Plane Geometry, and Trigonometry.

Ques. In the ACT math section, which topic has the highest mark weighting?

Ans. Most numbers of the questions of ACT math are from algebra. The two topics with the highest mark weighting in the ACT Math Section are algebra and plane geometry.

Ques. What are a few tricks to learning formulas?

Ans. The easiest and most effective way is to practice regularly. If you still have trouble remembering formulas then create a systematic sheet and write all the formulas that you require to apply to different questions. 

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