ACCUPLACER Policies & Regulations
Massachusetts State Policy: Mandatory Assessment and Planned Course Placement
Academic Assessment Policies
Academic Assessment at NECC is defined as a test of a student’s abilities in reading, writing, math, and English as a Second Language (ESL).
The Massachusetts Department of Higher Education mandates that all students entering state colleges must complete an assessment in order to determine basic skills levels for course placement. Based on assessment results, a student may be required to initially enroll in one or more developmental or ESL courses in order to prepare for college level course work.
Assessment and planned course placement are required for students who meet one or more of the following criteria:
- Students enrolling in a degree or certificate program (matriculated students).
- Students enrolling in the following courses: English Composition I; college level math; developmental reading, writing, and math; ESL; all courses with numbers beginning with zero; and all other courses with entrance level skills requirements. Please refer to the course description to determine if an assessment is required for a particular course.
- Non matriculated students will be allowed to register for up to two courses(*), prior to assessment (with the exception of those courses listed above.)
Expiration of Accuplacer Assessment Results
All developmental reading, writing, math and ESL course placements are valid for one year from the date of assessment.
College level placements in reading, writing and math are valid for three years from the date of assessment.
At Northern Essex Community College, the following multiple measures may exempt you from the full or partial ACCUPLACER College Placement Test (CPT).
Math Placement GPA
In accordance with the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education’s Task Force on Transforming Developmental Math Education recommendations, all 2014 high school graduates and beyond will be eligible for a math placement based on their high school GPA or Accuplacer.
- All students planning to enroll in Spring, 2015 classes or beyond should submit their final high school transcript as part of the application process.
- Accuplacer testing will still be required for entry into most courses. Students required to test should complete the Reading, Writing and Sentence Skills portion of the Accuplacer test. Please Note: We strongly encourage all students to also take the math test at this time so that we may properly evaluate academic skills levels and help them register for the most appropriate math course.
- Students whose overall GPA is 2.7 or higher and meet the necessary reading prerequisite may register for an entry level college level math course, regardless of a developmental math placement with the Accuplacer test. For example, the GPA places the student into College Algebra & Trigonometry/Applied Technical Math but Accuplacer places the student into Basic Algebra II. The student will be eligible to register for College Algebra & Trigonometry/Applied Technical Math but also has the option to register for Basic Algebra II.
- High School GPAs will be accepted for 3 years from the date of graduation.
- The Accuplacer test can place students at a higher level than the GPA placement. Therefore, it is in their best interest to take the test.
- Only transcripts that are calculated on a scale of 4.0 will be used for this pilot. All others will be required to take Accuplacer.
- Anyone who falls outside of the 2014 graduation criteria, does not have a GPA noted on the transcript or does not provide a transcript will be required to take the Accuplacer math test for placement.
*Some programs may require the math test prior to entry. Please check with your advisor or the program coordinator.
Writing Placement GPA
In the Spring of 2019, Northern Essex Community College will participate in a Writing GPA Placement project that has been formed by the work of the Massachusetts Department of High Education English Subcommittee of the Corequisite at Scale Initiative.
In accordance with the state’s anticipated recommendations, all high school graduates will be eligible for placement into English Composition 1 based on their high school GPA as one of the assessment measures in English. The pilot study will begin with all new, first time students who are enrolling in Spring 2019 courses.
- All students planning to enroll in Spring 2019 classes or beyond should submit their final high school transcript as part of the application process.
- Students will still be required to take the Accuplacer Reading test to determine whether they meet the necessary reading prerequisites for required courses.
- Students whose overall GPA is 2.7 or higher and meet the necessary reading prerequisite may register for English Composition I (*excludes Honors Comp.)
- High School GPA’s will be accepted for 10 years after the student high school graduation date. Eligibility begins with a high school graduation date of 2008.
- The project begins with new students enrolling for Spring 2019. GPA placement will not be retroactive for any students who are currently enrolled.
- Calculations for the pilot will be based on the standard 4.0 scale only, regardless if the High School is on a 5.0 scale. All others will be required to take Accuplacer.
- Anyone who falls outside the above stated criteria, does not have a GPA noted on the transcript or does not provide a transcript will be required to take Accuplacer.
If you have SAT scores, you may be waived from the reading and writing assessment. There are no math SAT waivers. Submit your SAT scores to Enrollment Express Services or the Academic Placement & Testing Center.
- SAT CRITICAL READING – Old SAT scores
- Verbal SAT 500 plus waives student from reading assessment
- Verbal SAT 600 plus waives student from both reading and writing assessment
- SAT READING TEST – New SAT scores
- SAT 27 plus waives student from reading assessment
- SAT 32 plus waives student from both reading and writing
The College Board Advanced Placement program (AP) provides participating high schools the opportunity to offer college-level coursework to students in a variety of subject areas. AP scores range from 1 to 5 points. AP scores of 3, 4, 5 are commonly acceptable as the equivalent of college-level course work. Please view the Advanced Placement (AP) Credit Policy at NECC.
If you have previously attended another college/university, NECC will evaluate successfully completed courses to see if you are exempt from testing. Submit your transcript to Enrollment Express Services.
Accuplacer Fax/Email Information for Scores
There is a $25.00 ACCUPLACER Fax/Email Fee for anyone who has taken the ACCUPLACER at NECC and is requesting that scores be faxed, emailed or mailed to another institution.
Registration Steps (1-2)
- Complete the required Request to have ACCUPLACER Scores Released form.
- Submit a non-refundable NECC Fee of $25.00. There are 3 options: Online, Walk-in or Mail-in.
Use One of These Three Methods to Make Your Payment
Your request will be processed when your registration form and payment is received and authorized.
Accepting Accuplacer Faxed Scores
NECC will accept an Accuplacer Individual Score Report (ISR) raw scores only. We do not accept placements. You can walk-in to the Academic Placement & Testing Center with your official ISR or have your institution fax the ISR to NECC, please have the institution fax your ACCUPLACER scores to: Northern Essex Community College, Academic Placement & Testing Center, Fax number 978-556-3169 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Accuplacer Prohibited Item Guidelines
Must be stored away where the item is not accessible or visible while taking the test
- Any device capable of recording audio, photographic, or video content, or capable of viewing or playing back such content
- Unauthorized testing aids
- Calculators (unless for a prescribed accommodation)
- Test taker provided keyboard, computer, or laptop, unless there is a documented disabling condition that requires the use of a very specific device
- Cellular phones, tablets, pagers, smartphones, walkie-talkies, PDAs, or wireless communication devices
- Dictionaries (standard and/or bilingual), books, pamphlets, or other reference materials
- Digital cameras
- Digital watches, smartwatches, or wristwatch cameras
- Flash/thumb drives or any other portable electronic device
- Food, beverages, or tobacco products
- Listening devices such as radios, media players (with or without headphones), or recorders
- Nonmedical electronic devices
- Paper of any kind (scratch paper must be provided and destroyed by the test center proctor; test takers cannot use or discard their own scratch paper)
- Slide rules, protractors, compasses, or rulers
- Weapons, firearms, or other items prohibited by law or test center/campus safety and security policies
If the tester does not adhere to the prohibited item guidelines, the proctor will inform the test taker to collect their personal belongings, including the prohibited item and to leave the testing lab. The testers test results will not be valid.
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