ACCUPLACER® Preparation

Students are strongly encouraged to prepare for the ACCUPLACER® exam, so the exam correctly reflects placement in reading comprehension, writing skills and mathematics.

The ACCUPLACER® placement test consists of:

  • Reading comprehension
  • Writing Skills
  • Numerical Skills/Pre-Algebra, Algebra
  • College Algebra and Trigonometry

Ways to Prepare for the ACCUPLACER® Exam

Tips for taking the ACCUPLACER® Exam

  • Come to the test session prepared and relaxed. Please keep in mind that this particular placement exam was designed to help students succeed in courses. The score or scores obtained will help determine which classes are most appropriate.
  • Get plenty of rest and eat properly before coming in to take the ACCUPLACER® exam.
  • Read all on-screen instructions/directions carefully.
  • ACCUPLACER® is an adaptive test, and questions are selected based upon answers to previous questions. Therefore, every question must be answered. Questions cannot be skipped or returned to. If a question seems difficult, try to eliminate one or more of the choices. Then, pick one of the remaining choices.
  • ACCUPLACER® mathematics is adaptive and tests at three levels. Students will test at the level needed for the program of interest. Mathematics include arithmetic, elementary algebra, and college level math.
  • ACCUPLACER® WritePlacer is a written essay. A writing sample is obtained and is scored on how it communicates a message. The score is based on an essay topic that assesses five characteristics of writing:
    • Focus: Clearness of the main idea or point of view
    • Organization: The structure of the essay and whether it presents a logical sequence of ideas
    • Development and Support: Assesses the ideas and the extent of supporting details.
    • Sentence Structure: The effectiveness of your sentence structure in expressing ideas
    • Mechanical Conventions: The degree to which the writing is free of errors in usage and mechanics

Testing Rules and Regulations

Test proctors must follow these guidelines for testing. A photo ID must be presented in order to test. Notebooks, textbooks, cell phones, calculators, dictionaries, backpacks, purses, hats, coats and other personal items are not permitted in the assessment room. Lockers are provided for storage of personal items. Scratch paper for math will be provided by the Testing Center. No assessment material or notes can be removed from the Testing Center. Any student who gives or receives help or uses personal items during the test will not be allowed to continue the test. Test proctors can end a test at any time if improper testing practices occur.

ACCUPLACER® scores and any other personal information will be used by the College for advising and course placement purposes. Scores and other information may also be used by the College and the College Board for research purposes. Students wishing to transfer scores to other institutions can contact the testing center for assistance. A fee is charged for this service.

Testing Accommodations

Northeast Iowa Community College is committed to providing equal opportunities for all students. Any applicant who needs accommodations (i.e. large print, having the test read) in placement testing because of a disability must provide documentation prior to the testing.

For more information on accommodations for placement testing, please contact the Disability Services Office on campus.

Related Pages

Contact Us

Calmar Campus Testing Center
Student Center 112
800.728-2256, ext. 311

Peosta Campus Testing Center
Main Building 251
800.728.7367, ext. 226

Dubuque and Town Clock Testing Center
680-700 Main St., Dubuque