States That Offer the ACT or SAT for Free

act sat for free map

You can take the ACT or the SAT for free in more than half of US states. The free tests are usually offered to 11th grade students during the school day and the state or the school district takes on the cost of the test, which would cost a student $52 for the ACT and $49.50 for the SAT if taken on a Saturday.  

Some states, like Oklahoma, offer both the SAT and the ACT for free and leave it up to the individual school districts to decide which test to offer their students. Other states, like Alabama, Michigan, and North Carolina, have taken on the SAT or ACT as their official state test. In New York City, 11th grade students participate in “SAT day,” taking the SAT test for free during a regular school day. 

Download Study Guides for the ACT

Does Your State Offer the ACT or SAT for Free?

Review the map below to see if your state offers the SAT or ACT for free. For more information, check with your school guidance counselor or your state’s department of education website. 

map of free act sat by state

What if My State Doesn’t Offer the Test for Free?

There’s another way to take the ACT or SAT for free: apply for a fee waiver. If you’re eligible, both tests offer up to two fee waivers to take the test for free. The SAT and the ACT also provide additional services for free if you qualify for a fee waiver. 

You’ll need to work with your school counselor to get the fee waiver. For more specific guidelines and details, check out the SAT fee waiver policies and the ACT fee waiver policies. 

How Do I Prepare for The ACT or SAT?

To prepare for the ACT or SAT, find study materials that work for you and stick with them. Take practice tests to get a feel for the layout of the test and drill down on concepts you miss. For subject-specific tips, check out a few of these resources:

Strategies for the ACT Science Section
How to Ace the ACT Reading Section
Study Guides for the ACT

If you’re looking for ACT study materials, our animated, online ACT prep course contains everything you need to learn to ace the ACT test! The course is self-paced so you don’t have to work around someone else’s schedule, and focused on high-priority questions to help you get more benefit in less time. Learn more and enroll by visiting

Map in cover photo via United States of America – Dots by

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