Frequently Asked Questions

Should I study for the placement test?

To make sure that your test scores accurately represent your skill levels, you may wish to review basic concepts in grammar, composition, reading, algebra and arithmetic.

Where can I obtain review sheets/sample tests?

You can get pdf's  here or go to the College Board's Accuplacer page to find review materials and sample tests.

What is Querium MathBooster?

Maybe it’s been a few years since you’ve seen an algebraic equation, or maybe you’ve always had a hard time with concepts like calculating slope or linear functions. Querium MathBooster for Accuplacer is an interactive and easy-to-use review tool that takes you through math problems similar to those you'll find on the Accuplacer. MathBooster will zero in on exactly where you're struggling the most and personalize your study experience to help prepare you for the test. You'll get instant feedback that lets you see how you're doing, so you can succeed on the Accuplacer math tests. And best of all, it’s FREE to Onondaga area students!  You only need Wi-Fi connection and a computer or mobile device. Click here for more information and to register now!

What if I am not comfortable with computers?

ACCUPLACER is very easy to use, even for prospective students with little computer experience. Since ACCUPLACER is an online test, however, you must have basic computer skills in order to complete it (using a mouse, keyboard, scrolling through a webpage, etc). Take time to become comfortable with the internet, mouse and keyboard prior to testing.

How long does the test take?

The un-timed battery (Sentence Skills, Reading and Mathematics) takes approximately two hours. If you are a transfer student and need to take only one test, plan on approximately 30 minutes.

May I use a calculator?

Yes, but you may only use the on-screen calculator that is embedded within the math test.  A calculator icon will appear on questions when calculator use is allowed.  Simply click on the icon to use the on-screen calculator.  If a calculator icon does not appear on a question, you may not use a calculator for that math problem. 

What should I bring with me to the test?

A photo ID is required. You must also have a student ID number.  If you need a student ID number, you can go to Student Central prior to testing or create one online by going to Click on “Take a Class”, click on “Register Now!”, click on “ Create a User ID.”

How do I schedule an appointment for the placement test?

Testing is on a walk-in basis during posted hours.

If English is NOT my first language,what test do I take?

You must first meet with the Admissions Office to determine which battery is appropriate for you.  Call 498-2221 to schedule an appointment.  

What if I have a learning disability or other type of disability and need special assistance?

Please see the Accommodative Testing section of the Testing Services website.

After I have taken the test, when will I get my results?

You will receive your results immediately after testing. Writing sample results will be mailed.

Can I be re-tested?

Please discuss re-test eligibility with test administrator.

Can you tell me on which material will I be tested?

The WritePlacer test asks examinees to provide a writing sample in response to a specific prompt. This assessment measures writing skill at the level expected of an entering college student. While all essays are scored immediately, some responses may require additional evaluation by the English department.

The Reading Comprehension test has 20 questions about the ideas in a reading passage, applying the information, and drawing inferences from a passage. The test also has questions that deal with the relationship between two sentences. This test will determine whether you must take developmental reading courses (RDG-087, RDG-093).

The Sentence Skills test also includes 20 questions. You will be asked to select correct words or phrases to substitute for an underlined portion of a sentence. You will also be asked to re-write a sentence while essentially maintaining the same meaning.

The Math test includes 1 to 2 different exams. Your math background will determine which exam(s) you will take. If you have completed an algebra course before, the first exam will consist of 20 questions to test your algebraic skills, half on beginning algebra and the remaining half on intermediate algebra skills. The second exam consists of 15 questions that test your arithmetic skills (fractions, decimals, multiplication, etc). The third exam is designed for students who have taken pre-calculus at the high school level. This exam consists of 20 questions to determine if you are ready for calculus.

What does adaptive testing mean?

ACCUPLACER™ is an adaptive test. This means that the computer uses your answers to determine the difficulty of each next question. Using this technique, we can determine your skill level by asking relatively few questions. The test is not timed, so you can give each question as much thought as you wish. Once you have verified your answer, however, you cannot return to that question.

What if I need to test for a college or university other than Onondaga?

The Testing Services Office is pleased to offer test proctoring for students attending schools other than Onondaga. The most common proctored tests are Accuplacer placement tests, tests for online courses and certification exams. Please see the link to Proctored Exams under the Additional Tests Offered tab for more information.

How do I schedule a test with accommodations for an OCC class I’m taking?

Please see the Accommodative Testing section of the Testing Services website.

Is there a cost for placement testing?

Placement testing in reading, English and math is free for current and prospective OCC students. There is a $35 fee for the Test of Essential Academic Skills for prospective OCC Nursing students. There is a proctoring fee of $25 for all exams taken by non-OCC students.