All students registering for English and/or math courses who have completed or will complete 6 or more units and plan to pursue a certificate, Associate degree, or transfer program are required to take an assessment test. All other students who plan to enroll in English or math courses or any course with an English and/or math prerequisite must also take an assessment test.
Tests are given on a walk-in basis with a valid photo identification during our walk-in testing hours. You may also choose to take the assessment tests at the COS Hanford Center, COS Tulare Center, DRC Testing Office, or if you are currently attending high school, you may contact your high school Counseling Office or Career Center to see when we will be visiting your school for on-site placement testing.
The results of the tests are very important to your academic career. Please allow yourself enough time to complete the assessment tests and make sure you are: feeling well, rested, not hungry, and prepared. If not, do not take the test(s) and feel free to return when you are ready. Test preparation materials are available in the Assessment Center during our office hours and also online. Click here for ACCUPLACER Sentence Skills and Reading Comprehension sample questions and study information.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the purpose of the tests?
The Computerized Placement Tests (CPTs) were developed to provide information about and determine your skill level in reading, writing, and mathematics. By assessing your ability in these areas the tests help to determine the reading, writing and mathematics courses most appropriate for you to enroll to successfully meet the requirements for your academic goals. Also, the college enforces mandatory placement for most English and math courses and will either prohibit registration into these courses or drop students unless the requirements are met.
What is my first step?
Complete a COS Online Application
. After submitting the application online print a copy of the confirmation page for your records.
What do I take with me on the test day?
You must bring a picture ID and know your social security number or your College of the Sequoias Banner ID number.
- A picture ID must be a valid government issued identification such as a State Driver's License (not including state-issued temporary or provisional licenses with photos), State-Issued Identification Card, Military-Issued Identification Card, U.S. or Foreign-Issued Passport, Permanent Resident Card, Student Visa, Certificate of Naturalization. Also acceptable as a valid form of identification is a College of the Sequoias Student Body Card or recent high school ID. If you do not have one of these valid identifications, you may bring your social security card AND birth certificate to verify your identity.
- Photocopies of IDs, passports, etc., will not be accepted under ANY circumstances.
- Pencils and scratch paper will be provided to you if needed.
- Please DO NOT bring food, drinks, or calculators; turn off cell phones and other electronic devices; arrange for childcare for children.
How long does it take?
We recommend that you allow yourself at least 2 hours to finish a complete test (English and math). The tests can also be taken in part.
Math placement - 45-60 minute timed test
English placement - Non-timed, Allow at least 1 hour
Math and English placement - Allow at least 2 hours
ESL placement (and CELSA) - 75 questions, 45 minute timed test
When do I know my results?
The results of your assessment test are provided to you immediately upon completion of your test and a staff member will review them with you. The results for the Math Comp. exam are generally available within 24 hours after testing.
What is ESL?
ESL is the abbreviation for English as a Second Language. We offer computerized ESL tests and students with minimal English language ability are given the option to take the ESL Placement test to enroll in beginning level ESL courses.
What are the fees for taking the test?
There are no fees for taking any of the tests.
How often can I test?
Assessment tests are offered throughout the year. Once a year you can repeat any part of the test. If you start the sequence of classes in the area which you have placed, you are required to continue the sequence.
Any student who needs assistance in taking any assessment test should call the Disability Resource Center for information and available accommodations.