Note: If you are looking for practice on the newest version of the ACCUPLACER (“Next Generation ACCUPLACER”), you will find that right here! See note below.
The ACCUPLACER test is a set of reading, math, and writing tests that help determine college-level course placement. It is different from many other tests in that the level of difficulty changes according to your performance on each item. The test attempts to pinpoint exactly where your skill level is by altering the difficulty of each succeeding question based on your responses. It is important to do your absolute best and carefully answer each test item for the results to be accurate.
The original ACCUPLACER test contains 10 computerized subtests. Your institution will determine which tests you need to take. All of them contain multiple-choice-type items except for the WritePlacer, which is a written essay. Most of these tests are not time-pressured, so you will have a chance to accurately show what you know, except for the WritePlacer, depending on the choice of the administering institution.
There are a varying number of items on each test:
College-Level Math (20)
Elementary Algebra (12)
Reading Comprehension (20)
Sentence Skills (20)
English-as-a-Second Language (ESL)-Language Use (20)
ESL-Reading Skills (20)
ESL-Sentence Meaning (20)
The WritePlacer essay gives you one attempt to write an essay on a topic and is scored on the basis of five writing skills.
In 2016, the College Board introduced a new version of some ACCUPLACER tests. These are called “Next Generation” ACCUPLACER tests and are composed entirely of multiple-choice questions. All of the new tests are computer adaptive tests (CAT), meaning that the computer assigns you the next question or question set based on your response to the previous question. The number of questions you receive is defined for each test, however. Most tests contain 20 questions.
The new versions of the tests have been designed to better identify student skill levels with regard to college-level abilities. This means that the new tests should be more effective at identifying actual remediation needs and moving all students into credit-bearing courses at a more appropriate pace.
For a while, colleges will be free to administer one version of the ACCUPLACER tests or the other, but not both. This chart shows the names of the new and old tests. Be sure to consult your institution to be sure you are preparing for the right ones because content of the new tests is quite different.
ACCUPLACER Tests That Are Changing:
Reading Comprehension is becoming Next Generation Reading
Sentence Skills is becoming Next Generation Writing
Arithmetic is becoming Next Generation Arithmetic
Elementary Algebra is becoming Next Generation Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra, and Statistics
College-Level Math is becoming Next Generation Advanced Algebra and Functions
To help you identify which of our practice materials to use, the sections with new version practice will be labeled “Next Generation” on our site. Remember that the old versions are still being administered, so check the names of the tests you will take very carefully. In the case of the Arithmetic test, you will need to be very specific in asking about the version of the test you will take, as the new and old versions of this test may have the same or similar names, but the question types may be very different.