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ACCUPLACER Introduction for Students

An introduction to ACCUPLACER for Students will help you to practice and be prepared for the test.

Computer Delivered Testing

You will take the tests using a computer. You will communicate with the computer by using either the keyboard or the mouse to enter your answers to the tests and to supply other information. The test instructions are easy to understand. A Test Administrator will always be present should you have any questions or problems. The Test Administrator has the ability to resolve any difficulties that may occur.

Answering the Question

Because ACCUPLACER is an adaptive test; you don’t have to answer as many questions as on a traditional paper and pencil test. The number of questions on the eight tests ranges from 12-20. The questions will appear one at a time on the computer screen. Most questions are multiple-choice and all you will need to do is use the mouse to select the desired answer. When you have completed the question and verified your answer a new screen will appear with your next question.

Adaptive Testing

Each test is designed using adaptive techniques. This means that the computer automatically determines which questions are presented to you based on your responses to prior questions. This technique “zeroes-in” on just the right questions to fit your skills and abilities. The greater your demonstrated skill level, the more challenging will be the questions presented to you.

  • The reading and math tests are un-timed so that you can give each question as much thought as you wish. However, once you have verified your answer, you cannot return to that question.

After you answer each question, the computer calculates a score based on all of the answers you have given and use this to select the next question to display. Because the test works this way, you must answer every question when it is first given. You cannot omit any question or come back later to change an answer.
If you do not know the answer to a question, try to eliminate one or more of the choices. Then pick one of the remaining choices.

ACCUPLACER Reading Comprehension Test

ACCUPLACER Reading Comprehension Test

Next-Generation Reading assesses the test-taker’s ability to derive meaning from a range of texts and to determine the meaning of words and phrases in short and extended contexts. Passages on the test cover a range of content areas, writing modes, and complexities. Both single and paired passages are included. Four broad knowledge and skills categories are assessed:

-Information and Ideas



There are three levels of math testing. You will take the Arithmetic and the Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra, and Statistics. Based on your scores, you may branch to the Advanced Algebra and Functions. The three levels of math testing are:

  • Arithmetic

    Next-Generation Arithmetic focuses on computation, order of operations, estimation and rounding, comparing and ordering values in different formats, and recognizing equivalent values across formats. The following knowledge and skills categories are assessed:

    -Whole Number Operations
    -Fraction Operations
    -Decimal Operations
    -Number Comparisons and Equivalents

  • Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra, and Statistics

    Next-Generation Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra, and Statistics (QAS) assesses the following knowledge and skills:

    -Rational numbers
    -Ratio and Proportional Relationships
    -Algebraic Expressions
    -Linear Equations
    -Linear Applications and Graphs
    -Probability Sets
    -Descriptive Statistics
    -Geometry Concepts

  • Advanced Algebra and Functions

    Next-Generation Advanced Algebra and Functions (AAF) assesses the following knowledge and skills:

    -Linear Equations
    -Linear Applications and Graphs
    -Radical and Rational Equations
    -Polynomial Equations
    -Exponential and Logarithmic Equations

ACCUPLACER WritePlacer Test

ACCUPLACER WritePlacer Test

The writing assessment will involve a 50 minute typed essay on an assigned topic. Your writing sample will be scored on the basis of how effectively it communicates its message to the readers for the stated purpose.  Your score will be based on your ability to express, organize, and support your opinions and ideas, not the position you take on the essay topic.

The following characteristics of writing will be considered:

-Focus: The clarity with which you maintain your main idea or point of view.

-Organization: The clarity with which you structure your response and present a logical sequence.

-Development and Support: The extent to which you elaborate on your ideas and the extent to which you present supporting details.

-Sentence Structure: The effectiveness of your sentence structure and usage.

-Mechanical Conventions:The extent to which your writing is free of errors in usage and mechanics.

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