The Truth About Placement Testing
We know that testing may seem like a waste of time or even a little scary. But we need the information to help you identify courses that will prepare you to be successful and that will lead to your graduation. You want to do your best so that you can place as high as possible. If you place lower than your actual skill level, you may need to take an extra class. To avoid taking an extra class, this is what you must do:
Prepare to do Your Best
To make the best of your placement testing, invest some time to become familiar with the test and to refresh skills that you may not have used recently.
- Get an idea of how the test is constructed
- Review sample essays
- Review sample ESL essays
- See math concepts included in Accuplacer and links to support material
- View videos of math concepts: www.khanacademy.com or www.patrickjmt.com
For additional Math and Writing resources, go to the Academic Support Center.
A free Official Accuplacer Study app is available.
If you require testing accommodations due to a documented disability, please contact the Office of Disability Services at 908-526-1200 x8418 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to apply for accommodations before taking the Placement Exam.
Take the Test
Accuplacer is a computer-based test. It uses adaptive technology to personalize the test for you, providing us with the information we need while limiting the number of questions you need to answer. Simplistically, this is how it works: if you answer a question correctly, the next one is more difficult. If you answer a question incorrectly, the next one is a little easier. It’s helpful to understand going into the test that there will be questions you do not have answers for. That’s okay!
No appointment is needed for testing – check www.raritanval.edu/testing or current hours and allow about 2 ½ hours to complete the test. You will need to bring a picture ID. All other material will be supplied – pencil, scrap paper and an on-screen calculator (when appropriate for math questions). Sign in at the counter when you arrive in the Testing Center, listen to your instructions, take a deep breath and take the test.
With this type of testing, we can provide most students' results and placements immediately after the test, even when there is an essay requirement, because it is scored using algorithms and artificial intelligence. Please note: ESL students will not receive scores immediately. You have to meet with a faculty member for a speaking assessment and to receive your placement.
Testing Center staff will review your scores and placements with you. That staff member may also suggest a section that you might consider retesting after more review to improve your placement. You may retest a section up to two times and there is a $10 fee for each section that you retest. If you do not think the results represent your skills, go back to the websites, refresh those skills and test that section again.