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With the aim to assist with the appropriate placement of incoming students, The College Board’s ACCUPLACER test is a standardized placement test used by over a thousand U.S high schools and colleges. The test is designed to assess reading, writing, and math skills on a computer-based platform.
Accuplacer Format: All of the questions on the exam are multiple-choice, with the exception of an essay portion.
Time Limit: The test is untimed, although it takes most students approximately 90-120 minutes to complete. It is a computer-adaptive exam, meaning that the difficulty of the questions is determined by the test-taker's previous responses. This also means that the number of questions in each section will vary.
Number of questions: 90 questions total on the test.
Candidates will first meet the Arithmetic section, which will include 17 questions. This is followed by College-Level Math, which includes 20 questions. The math portion concludes with Elementary Algebra, which includes 12 questions.
Candidates can start with Reading Comprehension on the language and reading side, which includes 20 questions. This is followed by Sentence Skills, which includes 20 questions.
Lastly, the ACCUPLACER test concludes with the written essay, which forms the final ‘question’ of the test.
77 is the passing score for Arithmetic.
76 is the passing score for Algebra.
250 is the passing score for English Basic Skills (EBS) in total of the three English tests. Multiply the Essay score by 15 and then add the three scores together.
Essay Score times 15 + Reading Comprehension + Sentence Skills = Total. 102 is the highest score on any of the multiple-choice tests.
On the essay, the highest score is 8.
264 is the passing score for Arithmetic is 264.
264 is the passing score for Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra, and Statistics.
The passing scores for English Basic Skills (EBS) are 6 or higher on the essay AND 243-300 on Reading.
The highest score on any of the multiple-choice tests is 300. The highest score on the essay is 8.
The ACCUPLACER exam divine into five different subject areas: Reading; Writing; Arithmetic; Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra, and Statistics; and Advanced Algebra and Functions.
There are also four ACCUPLACER ESL (English as a Second Language) exams: Language Use, Listening, Reading, and Sentence Skills. ACCUPLACER ESL tests assess English language learners' command of the English language.
The test is the evaluation of a candidate’s performance on fundamental arithmetic operations as well as their ability to deal with issues including basic fundamental arithmetic concepts. Questions on this test classified into three basic arithmetic skills:
This test involves college-level mathematics concepts. Questions on this test classified into five specific college-level skills:
The test involves elementary algebraic concepts. Questions on this test classified into three elementary algebraic skills:
The test is the evaluation of the candidate’s reading skills:
The test is the evaluation of a candidate’s understanding of proper sentence structure in regards to:
The ACCUPLACER Writeplacer test is the evaluation of a candidate’s writing skills, which are a significant indicator for academic success. Test takers are asked to formulate, organize, and support an opinion or idea based on a given writing prompt, and are evaluated based on the following five characteristics of their response:
ESL Language Use
The ESL Language Use measures how well you can use correct grammar in English sentences. It contains 20 questions of two different types. The first type requires you to select the correct form of a word, or words, to use in the blank space in a sentence. The second type asks you to select the correct form of a complete sentence, involving revising the order of the words.
In this test, you ought to listen to people speaking in a variety of settings. After that, you will be asked to answer questions about what you heard. It contains 20 questions and all of the conversations are in English. The ACCUPLACER ESL Listening Test is not timed.
ESL Reading Skills
This part evaluates your ability to read and understand a short passage and answer various types of questions about it. It contains 20 questions in this section and the answers range from things stated right in the passage, to things that may just be assumed, depending on what the author said. You may deal with such concepts as the main idea, fact, and opinion, vocabulary in a phrase, and applying the author’s opinion.
ESL Sentence Meaning
The section will test your ability to read and understand sentences that are written in English. It contains 20 questions in this section of two different types. The first type of question asks you to select one of four words, or groups of words, to fill in the blank for the sentence to make sense. The other type requires you to answer a question with the information you read in one or two sentences.
On test day, you will need to bring a valid form of identification with you. A school-issued ID is accepted if you are taking the exam at your school. In other cases, you should make sure that you have a government-issued form of identification. Before the day of the exam, you may check with your testing center to determine what their requirements are.
The ACCUPLACER is a computerized test so you do not need to bring anything with you on the test day. In some sections of the test you can use a calculator or scratch paper, these applications are available in the computer program itself, removing the need for students to bring anything.
Amy electronic devices or personal items are prohibited from being in the testing room. There may or may not be storage areas for personal items, but for sure, you may check with your testing center.
Take Practice Tests
There is no doubt that one of the best ways to make sure that you are prepared for the ACCUPLACER is by taking plenty of practice tests beforehand. These practice tests can be useful for you to identify areas where you may want to devote extra time for studying, and they can be helpful for you to familiarize yourself with the types of questions you will see and the format of the test itself.
Use Alternative Study Methods if necessary
Some students state that they can better retain information by incorporating alternative study methods instead of taking the practice tests. Flashcards are the method especially useful for the multiple-choice sections of the test and study guides for the Accuplacer are great for making sure you study the entirety of the covered topics. These materials, when integrated with practice tests, can be more effective for you to develop a comprehensive study plan.
Simulate the Testing Experience
Simulating the testing experience by completing a good number of questions from each section of the test that you are required to take is also a good idea. Because this test is not timed, simulating the testing experience can give you a better idea for tour performance when taking back-to-back in each section.
Take Your Time
The ACCUPLACER exam is not timed so it’s a better idea to take your time to carefully answer each question than it is to skim through the question and guess. Time is on your side with this exam, so using your time wisely.
If you do not know the answer to a question even after reading it through several times, it’s a good idea to take some time to read through the answers and attempt to remove the ones you know are wrong. This will be helpful for you to narrow down your final choice and increase the odds that it is correct.
Practice the Right Way
Your success depends not only on how many hours you put into preparing but also on whether you prepared the right way. It’s good to review the study method to see whether your studying is paying off. Taking practice tests to evaluate your progress is one of the most effective ways to do this. Practice tests are useful because they show exactly where you need to improve.
The website of Accuplacer is a web-based study application. Students can take practice tests in each subject that the exam will cover. Candidates will find that there are several advantages to using the web app to practice. The first advantage is the test provides a “learn as you go” format. It explains the answers as you progress from question to question. This is especially important for those who’ve made an incorrect response – or for those who’ve picked the correct answer by mistake.
One difficulty that people have with taking similar sample tests for other types of exams is that the sample tests are rarely similar to the actual tests. Instead, they’re only vaguely similar. The sample tests students find through the web app, however, have a high degree of overlap with the actual tests that students encounter once they start their exams. These tests can be stopped and started at any time, so learners don’t have to worry about losing their progress. Finally, the app keeps track of testing scores. This helps learners identify whether they’re improving their scores over time.
One thing to keep in mind on the test is that it is a whole multiple choice and it is impossible to skip a question. You have to make every answer count. One way to do this is to study how to arrive at answers by the process of removal. Simply put, most candidates will find it impossible to have mastery over every topic they meet. But it doesn’t mean it’s impossible to make a guess that has a chance of being correct. Rather than randomly guess from the selection before them, the candidate should take a while to remove the answers that are blatantly incorrect.
For example, there are four choices. A random one would have a 25% chance of being correct. Removing one answer and you’re left with three choices or a 33% chance of guessing the right one. Remove the third answer and you’re left with two choices and a 50% chance of guessing the correct answer. Learning how to remove answers that are wrong can help narrow down the options for a question and make a far more exact guess. Candidates should get into the habit of using a process of elimination to narrow down their selection even when they’re taking the practice test. The only part that candidates won’t use this process is their essay. But as mentioned previously, learning the five-paragraph structure to write an essay can help students create a framework by which they can more easily write an effective argument.
Having said that, we recommend that you aim to score at 200-300.
The four ACCUPLACER ESL tests use a different score range. The Language Use, Listening, Reading, and Sentence Skills ESL tests each have a score range from 20–120, with 120 being the highest possible score. The College Board does not provide score bands or Skills Insight statements for these exams.
Notice that: there is no one passes or fails ACCUPLACER tests, but it's necessary to finish the test using your best effort, so you can get an accurate measure of your academic skills.
In general, the fee ranges up to $50. It varies based on your institution, you should check with your school to determine exactly what fees you will be charged for taking the exam.
If you want to have good preparation, Passemall offers an online ACCUPLACER Test. The course is designed to provide you with whatever you want while studying.