Testing Placement

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[title size=”2″]Placement Testing[/title]

To ensure the success of students at Northwest Tech, the college administers the COMPASS placement test to evaluate student readiness to meet college-level mathematics, reading and writing requirements. Students who score below the minimum standards for college level courses will be required to take developmental course work. Developmental courses do not count toward graduation but will be figured in student’s GPA.

Placement in English and math courses is determined by the highest ACT, SAT or COMPASS scores. In the absence of ACT or SAT scores the COMPASS test will be given to all first-time, full-time students prior to enrollment. Placement testing is also required for part-time students prior to enrolling in their first English or math class.

Students must follow the sequence of developmental courses and pass with at least a “C” to move to the next level, unless retest results indicate higher placement.

ACT COMPASS ACCUPLACER Course Recommendations
Math Pre-Algebra Arithmetic
0-15 0-33 0-47 Prep Math
16+ 34+ 48+ Tech Math/Pre-Algebra
18+ 44+ 79+ Beginning Algebra
Math Algebra Elem. Algebra
0-15 0-37 Pre Algebra
18+ 0-45 38-59 Beginning Algebra
21+ 46+ 60-80 Intermediate Algebra
22+ 50+ 81+ College Algebra
Writing Writing Writing
0-17 0-68 0-68 Prep Writing
18+ 69+ 69+ English Composition I
0-36 0-100 0-120 Technical Writing


Students may retake the COMPASS test at the cost of $5.00 per section for one or more of the following reasons:

Student feels the placement results do not accurately reflect their abilities.
Student feels they have improved their skills through refresher work or previous developmental course work.
Student feels the grade received does not reflect their abilities and/or they desire to advance in the course sequence.
Retesting is limited to twice per semester and a minimum 24-hour waiting period between tests.

[title size=”2″]Review/Tips[/title]

You may want to take a practice test or review math, English and/or reading before you take the assessment. You can do so at one of these sites:

[title size=”2″]Scheduling a Compass Test[/title]

Call (785) 890-1505 to schedule a time to take the COMPASS test on the Northwest Tech campus.

If it is more convenient for you to take the COMPASS Assessement at a community college or university near you, contact Calli McDaniel, Student Affairs Administrative Assistant, at calli.mcdaniels@nwktc.edu to determine exactly which tests you need and/or to confirm a suitable alternative test.

[title size=”2″]Contact Info[/title]
Calli McDaniel
Phone: (785) 890-1505
Email: calli.mcdaniels@nwktc.edu