Placement Testing
Placement and Proficiency Testing
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For more info

For questions or information, 
please contact:

Placement & Proficiency
(217) 244-4437
pnp@illinois.edu


OFFICE HOURS

Monday - Friday
8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

New Freshmen

Whether or not you are required to take the placement exams depends on which College you are going into, your academic background, and your intended program of study. Even if you have taken Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate tests in these subjects, you still need to take the placement exams. Please complete this requirement at least two weeks prior to your Registration date.

PLACEMENT TESTING FOR FALL SEMESTER IS NOW CLOSED.

  • Math placement testing for Spring course enrollment has begun. Go here for more information.

  • Science and "language other than English" placement testing for Spring course enrollment will open in November.

 

Wondering which placement tests you have to take? To find out, click on the College that you have been admitted to.


Rhetoric

The Rhetoric courses are introductory courses in learning academic writing and research skills. Successfully completing Rhetoric is a General Education requirement for all undergraduate students and is called 'Composition I.'

If you are a native speaker of English, there is no placement exam for your 'Composition I' course. You will be placed into a RHET course based on your highest ACT English or SAT Evidence-Based Reading & Writing score.

Non-native English-speaking students will be informed by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions whether they are required to take the English as a Second Language Placement Test (known as the EPT). This information appears in your letter of admission.

  • If you are not required to take the EPT, then you will be placed into a Rhetoric course based on your highest ACT English or SAT EBRW score.

  • If you are required to take the EPT, then you must take the EPT even though you submitted ACT or SAT scores with your application. The only exception is if you already fulfilled the University's General Education 'Composition I' requirement with transferred coursework from another institution or with test-based credit for RHET 105 from an ACT, SAT, AP, or IB exam.


Math

All incoming freshmen are required to take the ALEKS PPL Math Placement Exam regardless of academic background, Advanced Placement (AP) credit, International Baccalaureate (IB) credit, or dual credit.

The Department of Mathematics coordinates the online ALEKS PPL exam. To take this placement test, you will log in through the Math Department's ALEKS PPL link, where you will find instructions and answers to frequently asked questions.

Math is the only placement test that you can take more than once. When you complete the test, your score will appear on the screen. If you are satisfied with the result, you will enroll in the course that you qualify for. If you are not satisfied with the result, you can study the material that gave you difficulty by accessing the Preparation and Learning Module and then you can take the test again to try to earn a higher placement. Prior to a third attempt, you will be required to engage in the learning module for a minimum of 5 hours before you can log in and test again. If you wish to test a fourth or fifth time, you will need to contact the Math Department for permission and a password. Your math placement is valid for four months. This means that you must complete your math course in the semester immediately following the date of your test.

Science

Online placement exams are available in chemistry, physics, and molecular and cellular biology. Please note that you are allowed only one attempt. It is very important that you discuss your placement test results and your course enrollment options with your academic advisor. Your science placement is valid for one year. This means, for example, that if you choose not to enroll in a chemistry course during your first or second semester, you may still follow the placement recommendation when pre-registering for your third semester. However, after that, you would need to take the departmental proficiency exam in order to obtain an updated evaluation of your knowledge level.


Languages Other Than English (LOTE)

Studying a language other than English is a General Education requirement at Illinois. You must successfully complete either the third or the fourth level of a LOTE (depending on your College) in order to fulfill your language requirement. It is strongly recommended that you take a LOTE placement exam even though you may think you have fulfilled your General Education requirement!

Taking a year-long AP or IB language course does not count for more than one year. Studying the language in middle school may not count at all.

Online placement exams are offered in Chinese, French, German, Latin, and Spanish. You are allowed only one attempt, and you will see your course placement as soon as you finish. It is very important that you discuss your placement test results and your course enrollment options with your academic advisor.

On-campus (not online) placement exams are offered for Japanese and Korean at the beginning of each fall and spring semester and are open to both new students and continuing students. Although demonstrating language proficiency in Japanese or Korean with high scores on these exams can fulfill the Gen Ed LOTE requirement, it DOES NOT earn you course proficiency credit.

If you need to take a placement exam in any other LOTE contact the department to make arrangements.

Results from the language placement exams are valid for one year. This means, for example, that if you choose not to enroll in a LOTE course during your first or second semester, you may still follow the placement recommendation when pre-registering for your third semester. After that, you would need to take a departmental proficiency exam in order to obtain an updated evaluation of your knowledge level. Placement testing is available to you only during your first year.


Test Accommodations

Students who need extended time can also take the online placement exams. To request authorization for extended time, contact the Testing Center at Disability Resources and Educational Services (DRES) by calling 217-333-4604 (V/TTY) or emailing testing@disability.uiuc.edu. If you need any other type of accommodation, please contact DRES to make arrangements.

 

Click here for information about proficiency testing and course credit.

Click here for the cutoffs that apply to all new students enrolling at Illinois in 2018-2019.

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