Question 1 - WritePlacer Essay Prompts Practice Test for the ACCUPLACER Test

Essay-Writing Practice for the ACCUPLACER®

The essay portion of the ACCUPLACER is the WritePlacer®. It evaluates your ability to read through a passage, take in information, and formulate your own opinion or response in a way that is cohesive, coherent, and well-supported. The WritePlacer® can be used to supplement the writing portion of the ACCUPLACER, for people who are seeking entry into a college-level course, or who are seeking placement as ESL students.

Learn more about practicing for the essay portion of your exam

Type of Essay

The essays for this particular test are expected to be between 300 and 600 words. They may be argumentative or expository essays, and will require you to demonstrate your ability to think critically, and support your ideas with ample evidence.

Type of Prompt

The prompts on the WritePlacer will include a passage, a question, and an explanation of what is expected of you. The passage may be from literature, newspapers, or other sources of prose and nonfiction, and the question will require you to read the passage, formulate an opinion or idea based on what you’ve read, and construct a unique essay explaining and supporting your position.

Time Limit

The WritePlacer can be a part of the overall ACCUPLACER, and is used to determine the placement of a student in a college course. The WritePlacer consists of a single essay of 300-600 words. You will have 60 minutes to complete the WritePlacer essay.

How It Is Scored

Your essay will be graded on its ability to answer the prompt given, your understanding of the passage given, and your ability to construct a paragraph that follows the rules of grammar, conventions, and punctuation. It is scored on an 8-point scale, with a score of 1 being the lowest and a score of 8 being the highest. Essays are automatically evaluated at the conclusion of the test. You can find a number of examples of essays and how they were scored in this WritePlacer Guide.

The particulars of the WritePlacer scoring system include the following:

  • Purpose and Focus: Your essay will be judged on its ability to stay on track and deliver the information requested in the prompt.
  • Organization and Structure: The WritePlacer will evaluate your ability to maintain a consistent and coherent organization system, typically involving a thesis or main idea and corresponding evidence and support.
  • Development and Support: This component evaluates your ability to fully flesh out the ideas you present in your essay.
  • Sentence Variety and Style: In order to maintain readability and encourage interest, sentences should vary in their structure and size. Short, choppy sentences should be used alongside or intermingled with longer, more complicated sentences.
  • Mechanical Conventions: While it may seem complicated, this component simply refers to the ability to use standard English grammar and punctuation.
  • Critical Thinking: Critical thinking skills are measured by your ability to deliver an essay that demonstrates you have read and understood the passage and prompt, and have put thought and intention into your writing.

Continue to view the first writing prompt and start the 60 minute timer.

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All Practice Tests for the ACCUPLACER Test are now available as downloadable PDFs