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* Important - do not go to the testing website until you have carefully read the following information. *
 
Introduction
As an incoming Temple student, you are required to take University Placement Tests prior to your first semester.  These tests are designed to help assess mastery of certain basic skills, to point out particular strengths and weaknesses, and to assist in designing a program of study for you.  Placement tests in English, Math, and Foreign Languages, as well as the New Student Questionnaire, are offered online.

Students with documented disabilities requiring accommodations for taking online Placement Tests must first contact Disability Resources and Services to secure accommodations.
 
Which test(s) do freshmen and transfer students need to take?
All freshmen and transfer students must complete the New Student Questionnaire (NSQ).

Incoming freshmen must take Placement Tests prior to their first semester, including English, Mathematics, and Foreign Language (if they have previously studied a foreign language and meet the criteria as stated below in the Foreign Language section).

Incoming transfer students may be required to take certain Placement Tests prior to their first semester.  To help determine which Placement Tests they are required to take, transfer students should carefully read the information below and refer to Placement Test exemptions on their Evaluation of Transfer Credit statement (sent from the Admissions Office).

Test Selection Guidelines

  • English
    All incoming students are required to take the English Placement Test unless they transfer a course that has been evaluated as a direct equivalent of Temple’s English 0802, or 0812.

    Transfer students who completed an English Placement Test at their previous institution and tested out of their previous institution’s English Composition or comparable requirement can be waived from the English 0802 requirement if they have documentation of their placement and have successfully completed a higher level English/Writing course.  Acceptable documentation includes an official letter from the university’s Registrar, advising unit, a faculty member, or other appropriate university official.
 
Descriptions of the Placement Tests
  • New Student Questionnaire (NSQ)
    The NSQ is a personal data collection survey that must be completed by all students.  The information is used to help design services and programs to meet the needs of Temple students.  All information is kept confidential.  It is recommended that you take the NSQ first before taking any tests.
  • English (60 minutes)
    The English Placement Exam consists of writing one essay on a topic chosen from Topic Sheet K or Topic Sheet L (provided here in advance so that you can prepare).

    Each topic sheet contains four essay topics to choose from.  At test time, you will be presented with two topics from each of the topic sheets.  To be well prepared, choose one of the topic sheets and then be ready to write an essay on any of the four topics on that sheet.

    Print one of the topic sheets (Topic Sheet K or Topic Sheet L). Read the exam directions carefully and with these in mind, look over the four topics. Feel free to make notes. This preparation will allow you to get to work immediately when you begin the test because you will have given some thought to each of the potential topics.

    Note - while you are strongly encouraged to prepare for your essay exam before starting the test, you must actually write the essay during the exam and not use computer software -- including Microsoft Word -- to paste text into your exam.

    The Institutional Research and Assessment website has sample essays that we recommend you read to get an idea of the standards used to judge your work.

    Your job is to help the exam readers understand both the writer’s ideas and your own ideas on a particular issue.  In this test, readers are not interested in whether you have the “correct” position on an issue.  To place you properly in the First-Year Writing Program, readers need to see how well you read a passage, explain the writer’s argument, and present your own argument in an organized essay with relatively few grammatical errors.

  • Math (75 minutes)
    The Math Placement Exam is a multiple-choice examination.  The items range in difficulty, from arithmetic and algebra to calculus readiness, and include the following:

      • Arithmetic operations • Exponents and logarithms
      • Decimals and fractions • Inequalities and absolute values
      • Percents and ratios • Graphing
      • Linear functions and equations • Word problems
      • Quadratic equations • Trigonometry
      • Polynomials and rational functions • Functions and function operations

    Calculators or other forms of assistance are not permitted during this exam. 

    Students are encouraged to review basic arithmetic and algebra skills so test scores accurately reflect ability and enable the advisor to determine the appropriate course.  The Institutional Research and Assessment website provides math review items.  Also, some students may choose to use the services of an online in-depth Math review program called MyMathTest. Click here for more information about MyMathTest.

  • Foreign Language (60 minutes)
    The Foreign Language Placement Exams are multiple-choice and test basic skills in Language Usage (choosing the appropriate word or phrase to complete a sentence) and Reading Comprehension (interpretation of passages written in that language).

    French, German, Italian and Spanish Foreign Language Placement Tests are available online.  The Modern Greek Placement Test is available via paper-and-pencil on-campus.  Please contact our office at 215-204-8611 to schedule an appointment to take the Modern Greek Placement Test.

    If you have previously studied another foreign language and wishes to be tested in that language, it may be possible to arrange testing.  A Foreign Language Waiver Form and Procedures for Applying for a Foreign Language Waiver can be found on the Provost website at www.temple.edu/vpus/forms.

Reminder:  The Placement Test(s) you are required to take depend upon your major, school/college, transfer credits, etc. As explained above, the NSQ and all required tests must be completed before you are permitted to schedule your on-campus Academic Advising/Orientation Session to meet with your advisor and register for classes.

If you have questions regarding Online Placement Testing or if you encounter technical issues, send an email to placement-testing@temple.edu or call 215-204-8611.


You do not have to complete multiple tests in one sitting.  You may take the individual tests at different times/days. 

However, since these are timed tests, once you begin a specific test, you must finish it within one sitting.  When you begin a test, the timer will start and keep running even if you exit the test or close your browser before completing the test.  Once time runs out, you will not be able to go back in to finish the test.

When you are ready to take the online Placement Test, make sure you have a reliable internet connection and a quiet environment where you will have uninterrupted time and an atmosphere conducive for test taking.  Please have your AccessNet username and password available.

 
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