Top 7 ACT Grammar Rules For English

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What ACT English rules for grammar do you need to know to ace your English section score? We’ve got the answers here.

Understanding the ACT grammar rules that will be used during testing day is important for both your ACT English score as well as your overall performance as a whole.  Quesbook is determined to help you do well on the ACT, so we created a list of the top 7 ACT grammar rules. Have a look!

ACT English Rules – Top 7 Grammar Tips!

Using The Right Pronouns

People often use pronouns incorrectly during everyday speaking, so it’s no surprise that the ACT wants to test whether you know how to use correct pronoun agreement. When working on the ACT English rules for grammar, you need to remember that a pronoun must match its antecedent, meaning it must agree with its antecedent in both person, number, and gender. Looking for additional resources about antecedents? We like this handout by Grammar Bytes that’s ready to be printed out for super easy reference.

Organizing Ideas

To test whether you understand how to properly organize ideas, another way the ACT English is going to check whether you know your ACT grammar rules is by asking you to order sentences or paragraphs. This can be in the form of adding, editing, or deleting whole sentences.

Subject and Verb Agreement


The English ACT section often contains long sentences in which the subject and the verb are separated by a large number of words or clauses. It’s not always the easiest to read and identify and is written for that specific purpose. However, if you can find the main idea of a sentence and make sure that the words or phrases correspond to it accordingly, then you can rest assured your subject and verb agree and you’re keeping up with your ACT grammar rules – Everything about verb questions in ACT English.


Run-ons are grammatically incorrect because two (or more) full thoughts are poorly matched, missing either the proper punctuation or conjunction.  It’s important to be able to identify a run-on as incorrect on the ACT.

Want extra practice on proper punctuation, try this practice question on dashes.

Parallel Structure


This is not as difficult as the rule suggests. Parallelism means you should use phrases or elements that are in the same form as one another. This can be confirmed by comparing the parts of speech. Tips and example questions for parallel structure questions

Sentence Fragments

Sometimes a fragment looks like a sentence, but don’t be fooled! A sentence that is missing either a subject, a verb, or a complete thought is grammatically incorrect and does not follow the ACT Grammar rules.  Here is an example of what you could see on the test.

Transitional Words & Phrases

Transitional words and phrases can create links between ideas and can help the author demonstrate ideas. Your understanding of transitions will fall into 3 categories: addition like “also” and “moreover“, contrast like “however” and “still“, and causation like “so” and “because.”  It’s up to you to know when to use each (as well as proper punctuation) by practicing your knowledge of this ACT grammar rule.

If you are able to focus on these top ACT grammar rules, you will be one step closer to achieving the ACT English score of your dreams.  As you will hear many times from us at Quesbook, preparation for the ACT is key and we’ve got a full ACT English practice arenathat will help you improve your skills.

If you are currently preparing for the ACT and haven’t signed up for our free online practice arena, sign up here.  We have over 10,000+ free ACT practice questions as well as smart analytics that pinpoint your weaknesses and help guide you to more individualized practice and prep for the ACT.


Related Articles:

ACT English question type breakdown with question frequencies and example questions.

The complete study guide to ACT English skills with practice questions!

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