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The Real ACT (CD) 3rd Edition (Official Act Prep Guide) 3rd Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
I gave this book five stars because it has the best practice tests. However the content is identical to previous editions, even the page numbers have not changed! The only difference is that there are two additional practice tests included here (one I recognize as the test from December 2008). The bottom line is that you get a better value by spending $21.50 for five practice tests in this third edition versus spending $20 for the first three practice tests in the earlier editions (Amazon prices as of 8/25/11).
An even better deal is to scroll up this page to the box called "Formats" in orange letters. Click on the Paperback link and get the book without the CD. The material on the CD is not very helpful and getting just the paperback will save you a few dollars.
UPDATE AS OF MAY 4, 2013: Amazon has made it slightly more difficult to find the book without the CD. Scroll up the page to where it says "Formats" in orange letters. Then click on the plus sign to the left of the "Paperback" link to expand it. Then click on the link that says "Paperback, September 6, 2011."
UPDATE AS OF JANUARY 2014: Amazon is pricing the book with the CD to be 42 cents less than the book without the CD. No idea why that would happen.
UPDATE AS OF APRIL 2014: Amazon no longer sells the book without the CD, so the instructions above regarding formats no longer applies. The book without the CD can be purchased on the Amazon web site but only through third parties.
The book's main downside, however, lies in the introductory content sections before the practice tests are introduced. In the math section, for example, the guide tells you that you need to have a clear understanding of basic trigonometric relationships to be successful on the test. On page 55, the book gives you an example problem and simply tells you that you must use the sin relationship to answer the question. However, it does not state the definition of the different trigonometric relationships needed for the test, such as sin, cos, and tan(and in some cases: cot, sec, and csc).Read more ›
However, I do want to note that The Real ACT Prep Guide itself is absolutely essential for prep. This is my tenth year of test prep tutoring and I always find that students who prepare with real ACTs have more confidence and get higher scores than those who don't. The more tests, the better, so it is wonderful to have five to work with. I should probably mention, however, that the skills review and strategies in this book are sub-par. The ACT company just isn't going to give all that much away. For the past few years, I have used The Real ACT Prep Guide along with Boost Your Score! The Unofficial Software Guide to the Real ACT with great success. It gives diagnostic feedback for the tests in The Real ACT Prep Guide and provides strategies and resources. Together with The Real ACT Prep Guide, it's kind of a "course in a box" and students love the reports so they can track their progress as they complete the official ACTs.
Having said all that, I want to advise those considering the purchase of this edition to buy it anyway. Let's consider the 4 subjects. First, English. It is my opinion that the English tests in this book are representative of recent tests. Using only this book, I have helped several students within the past 6 months to achieve high scores on the English test, including a perfect 36, a 35, and several 33s and 34s.
Now, on to Math. Recent ACT math tests have included a few problems that are real doozies, including a jaw-dropping item on the April test! The hardest problem in the red book is not as hard as a few of those recent problems. However, there is still a lot of overlap between even the oldest test in this book and the most recent test for which I have a copy, April, 2014. I just worked with a student who took the April test and scored a 27 in math; using the red book, I helped him raise math to a 31 on the Sept. test.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Loved the book! Great guide. Will definitely help anyone who needs a higher grade on there ACT'sPublished 21 days ago by Hector Hernandez
I didn't really read the lesson in front, but I took like half a practice test before taking the real ACT and got a 32.Published 23 days ago by Christina L.
This is an excellent tool to help to prepare for ACT test. It has 5 full length practice tests including the writing test if you want that practice. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Lavo
Review was ok for how in depth it was (it just briefly went over the surface of things and moved on to other topics) but I never realized how 4 practice tests isn't as much as you... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
The book arrived two days before it's predicted delivery date and the quality and materials were there, so I happily used it to study for my test. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
This book gives you no information at all that you can't find online. This book finds a way of telling you the most basic information about the test and gives you no help in how to... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Russell