Order of Difficulty and the Math Test
Knowing the order of difficulty will help you shape your
approach to the test. ACT claims that the Math Test is ordered roughly
by increasing difficulty. We want to emphasize the adverb “roughly”
so you will not be surprised to find an easy question near the end
of the test or a difficult one near the beginning.
You should pace yourself according to the knowledge that
an early problem on the test will be easier than a problem late
in the test. With 60 minutes to solve 60 problems, you might be
thinking that you should allot a minute for each problem. But easy
problems should take you less than a minute to solve, while solving
a difficult problem can be time-consuming. If you find yourself
spending too much time on a problem early in the test, skip it and
come back to it later.
That said, you should not rush through the early problems
on the test to save time for the problems near the end. Remember
that all questions on the ACT are worth the same to the scoring
machine, so you should set a pace that allows you to answer the
early problems carefully without sacrificing speed.