Math Concepts Covered on the ACT
Pre-Algebra (14 problems)
Fourteen problems on the ACT Math Test cover topics you learned before your first Algebra class, such as percent, absolute value, powers, square roots, simple probability, simple statistics (mean, median, mode), and interpreting charts, tables & graphs. Many of these problems show up near the beginning of the ACT Mathematics test, but you may see one or two later in the test.
Elementary Algebra (10)
Ten ACT Math problems cover early Algebra subjects such as functions, substitution, polynomials, using factoring to solve quadratic equations (Ex. x2+x-2=0), and linear inequalities with one variable (Ex. 3x-1<0).
Intermediate Algebra (9)
Nine ACT Math problems cover more advanced Algebra, such as using the quadratic formula, radical expressions, absolute value equations and inequalities (Ex. |x-1|>10), sequences, systems of equations, quadratic inequalities, functions, matrices, roots of polynomials, complex numbers, and logs.
Coordinate Geometry (9)
Nine problems on the ACT Math test cover Coordinate Geometry concepts such as relating equations & graphs, finding the slope of a line, parallel & perpendicular lines, distance, midpoints, and conic sections.
The ACT Math Test Made Easy includes a targeted Coordinate Geometry formula page.
Plane Geometry (14)
Fourteen ACT Math problems cover Geometry concepts such as triangles, rectangles, parallelograms, trapezoids, circles, proof techniques, simple 3-D geometry, measurement concepts (perimeter, area, volume), translations, rotations, and reflections.
The ACT Math Test Made Easy includes a targeted Plane Geometry formula page.
Four problems on the ACT cover Trigonometry concepts, such as trig ratios defined on right triangles, graphing trig functions (sine, cosine, tangent), values & properties of trig functions, and trig identities. These problems tend to show up near the end of the ACT Mathematics test since they are answered incorrectly more often than earlier problems. Some students taking the ACT have not had trigonometry, and may not even try to work these four problems.
The ACT Math Test Made Easy includes a targeted Trigonometry formula page.