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Accuplacer Placement Testing/Test Prep

What is Accuplacer?

ACCUPLACER is Herkimer’s placement test. ACCUPLACER tests are computer-adaptive. This means that the computer automatically determines which questions are presented based on your answers to previous questions. This technique “zeroes-in” on just the right questions to ask you without being too easy or too difficult. Your final score on each test is determined by two things: how many questions you answered correctly, and the difficulty level of the questions you answered correctly. A proctor will be present to answer questions or to assist first-time computer users.

How much computer experience do I need to take the test?

Although you will be taking these tests on a computer, it is not necessary that you have extensive skills. The number of questions on each test ranges from 17 to 22. The questions will appear one at a time on the computer screen. The questions are multiple-choice and you will only need to use the mouse or space bar on the keyboard to select the desired answer. The test will begin with a tutorial explaining how to respond to each question type. 

What are the scores used for?

At the conclusion of the test, the computer automatically determines your placement into first-semester English and math classes using criteria established by our faculty and staff. Course placements made on the basis of the test scores serve as a beginning step in the advisement and course registration process. The goal is to place you in courses that best fit your abilities. Please note that your scores will not effect, in any way, your admission to Herkimer College.

How does it work?

ACCUPLACER measures your abilities in English and Math, and you may be required to take one or both parts (admissions will tell you what you need to take). You will be entering your information into the computer, so if you’re not familiar with computers be sure to complete the brief tutorial before starting the assessment. You may not use a calculator unless ACCUPLACER provides one for you, and no web assistance is allowed at any time.

What should I bring?

You will need to bring an official photo ID. Make sure you know your student ID# (your H number). Any and all other materials will be provided for you by the college.

How much does it cost?

ACCUPLACER is free of charge.

How to Prepare?

You cannot "pass" or "fail" the placement tests; however, to ensure that scores accurately represent your skill level, you may wish to review basic concepts in reading, arithmetic, and algebra before taking the placement tests, especially if you have been away from school for more than a year. Many students find that a GED or SAT review book (available at local bookstores and public libraries) is helpful in refreshing their basic skills.

In addition, listed below are a few websites that other students have found helpful in brushing up on their skills.