Placement Tests: A Tool for Community College Success
Academic Skills Assessment - COMPASS®
Alabama Community College Placement Test (COMPASS® EXAM) is
administered by the Office of Student Services. The test
consists of three sections and assesses a student's achievement
level in sentence skills, reading comprehension, mathematics,
and algebra. The COMPASS is not a timed test and is administered
via computer. This assessment tool helps determine your level of
preparedness for college-level work. Placement tests can help
you and your advisor plan the best set of courses for your
career goals and skill level.
The COMPASS dates and times are assigned after an application is
received in the Office of Admissions. The student will then
receive a letter scheduling a time/date to complete the
placement. There is no fee for the test. A picture ID is
required for identity purposes.
What Are the Tests Used For?
Sometimes, placement test results help determine whether you’d
benefit from developmental, or remedial, course work. While
these courses may seem like a detour from the courses you were
looking forward to taking in college, they will provide you with
solid preparation to succeed in advanced courses, as well as the
sorts of skills you'll use in any career.
Without such developmental work, you may be discouraged by the
pace and complexity of college-level course work. Studies have
found that students who begin college without the skills they
need to do college-level work—even if they manage to stay in
college for more than a year—are far less likely to earn a
tests can also help determine whether you're ready for more
advanced course work and may allow you to place out of required
courses. You'll want to do your very best on the tests, since
this could possibly reduce the number of courses you'll have to
take to obtain your degree.
Either way, taking placement exams will help to ensure your
future academic success. In pursuing higher education you
increase your lifelong earning potential—not to mention job
satisfaction—exponentially. Like anything else in life, you can
only start from where you are. But as soon as you do start,
you’re already on your way to a new peak of achievement.
Students who have previous college credit in English and
mathematics are not required to take the test.
Exemption – Any student scoring:
1. 480 or above on the SAT verbal and 480 or above on the SAT
2. 20 or above on the ACT English, and 20 or above on the ACT
math who applies for admission to and enrolls in a system
college within two years of high school graduation
3. Students who have an associate degree or higher
4. Students who transfer required college-level English or
mathematics courses with a grade of “C” or better
Test Prep Review for free online practice for the
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