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    From orientation to graduation...

Department of Advising and Counseling

…a commitment to academic success and student retention.

    Community College of Rhode Island


    What you should know

    Why the Accuplacer Placement Test is Administered

Accuplacer is administered to students to ensure academic success in English (Writing and Comprehension) and

    Mathematics, as these courses are foundational to virtually every degree program offered at the Community

    College of Rhode Island.

Testing aims for success by revealing each prospective student’s skill level in English Writing, Reading

    Comprehension and Mathematics. Mandatory placements based on test scores correspond to the skill level of

    each student. Using these mandatory placements, students will begin classes at a level where they are more

    likely to succeed.

The ACCUPLACER ESL assesses your English skills if you have learned English as an additional language to

    your native or first language. The ACCUPLACER ESL is divided into five sections. You may be asked to take

    more than one of these exams.

    Who is Required to Complete Placement Testing?

All students are required to complete placement testing in order to meet certain course prerequisites (please

    consult course descriptions in the College Catalog for prerequisite requirements).

    Waiver Criteria

The CCRI Advising and Counseling Department will consider students for placement testing waivers based on

    certain academic criteria, however waivers are NOT automatically granted to students meeting the criteria below. Waivers are considered individually after a thorough review of the respective student’s entire academic

    record. Students eligible for a waiver from all or part of the Accuplacer exam must meet at least one of the

    following criteria:

    ? Students who have completed ACCUPLACER at another institution within the past year

    ? Students who have transfer credits in College-level English and Math classes

If College-level math courses were completed more than TWO years ago, placement testing is strongly

    recommended to obtain estimates of current skill levels for advisement purposes.

Students requesting a waiver from ACCUPLACER should contact the Advising and Counseling Department.

Preparing for the Placement Test

Preparation is suggested to insure that test scores accurately represent your current skill levels. Reviewing

    basic concepts in reading, grammar, arithmetic and algebra before taking ACCUPLACER should assist you in

    preparation for the test.

    Making your Appointment for the Accuplacer Assessment

To schedule your appointment for the Accuplacer Assessment, please contact the Advising and Counseling

    Department at:

401-825-2301Warwick Campus

    401-333-7159Lincoln Campus (Office of Student Services)

    401-455-6149Providence Campus

    401-851-1622Newport Campus


Referral Sources for Preparation (available at most libraries and bookstores)

You may find the following resources helpful in your preparation for Accuplacer:

Reading Comprehension and Sentence Skills

    ? GED Review Book

    ? SAT I Review Books (publishers include: Arco, Kaplan, Nova and Barrons)

Arithmetic Review

    ? Essential Mathematics: Basic Math for Everyday Use, Williams and Akins, Barrons

    ? Contemporary’s Building Basic Skills in Mathematics, Contemporary Books

    ? GED Review Book

    ? SAT I Review Books (publishers include: Arco, Kaplan, Nova and Barrons)

Algebra Review

    ? Forgotten Algebra, Bleau, Barrons

    ? Quick Algebra Review: A Self-Teaching Guide, Selby and Slavin, Wiley

    ? SAT I Review Books (publishers include: Arco, Kaplan, Nova and Barrons)


    ? Pay attention especially to the Pre-Algebra and Introductory Algebra

    sections. In Pre-Algebra, focus on operations involving fractions, decimals, percentages, rations

    and proportions. In Introductory Algebra, focus on factoring, exponentials, and solving


    ? This site contains a volume of pages that focus on basic math skills,

    interactive practice on every page, explanation of concepts on every page, challenge games

    and random mathematics problems.

    ? This test, created by the Nassau Community College Math

    Department, is an excellent test that parallels the format of Accuplacer mathematics exams.

    ? This is a very comprehensive site that reviews principles from basic

    mathematics to calculus. We recommend the Pre-Algebra and Algebra sections for review.

    ? Rock Valley College in Rockview, Illinois

    has developed a comprehensive list of study resources for all areas of the Accuplacer



Computer Delivered Testing

Accuplacer is a computer-based test delivered via the Internet. Minimal computer skills are needed to complete

    the test. All information is entered by using the mouse and/or the keyboard. A proctor will always be present

    to assist with problems that relate to test format or to computer usage. Proctors may not, however, answer

    any academic-related questions associated with the test.

Adaptive Testing

The Accuplacer test is an adaptive test. This means that the computer uses your answers to questions to

    determine the level of difficulty of each successive question asked. Using this technique, we can determine

    your skill level on each section of the test by asking relatively few questions. The test is untimed, so that

    you can give each question as much thought as you wish. Once you have verified your answer,

    however, you cannot return to that question.

Administrative Instructions

A photo ID (driver’s license, student ID, etc.) and Receipt of Payment are REQUIRED at the time of check-in.

Before testing begins, a proctor will give administrative instructions to all students who are about to test. These

    instructions are also available at each computer station. To eliminate unnecessary noise in the testing room,

    you MUST turn off any cell phones and pagers, there is no talking during testing, and you should maintain

    silence if you have to leave the room to take a break. Students are not allowed to use a calculator on the math

    portion or a dictionary on the essay, reading, or sentence skills portions of the test. If you require special

    arrangements, please see the following paragraph on accommodations for students with disabilities. Students

    who are caught violating any testing instructions will be asked to leave the lab and will need to make other

    arrangements for testing.

    Testing of Students with Disabilities

Students who need Accuplacer testing and are eligible for special accommodations should ensure that the

    appropriate documentation, reflecting the specified accommodations, is forwarded to the CCRI Office of

    Disability Services at least TWO WEEKS prior to desired testing. Please call Disability Services at 401-825-2164 Warwick Campus, or 401-333-7329 Lincoln Campus, or 401-455-6064 Providence Campus to discuss

    accommodations and to schedule a testing session where these accommodations can be used.

Testing Time

You are given 50 minutes to complete the typed essay. The reading, sentence skills, and math portions of the

    test are un-timed. Generally, students take 2 to 2 ? hours to complete the full test.

Testing Fee

You will be required to pay a $40 Placement Fee in advance to Accuplacer testing. You must make this

    payment at the BURSAR Office. This is a one-time fee and is mandatory of all students completing Accuplacer testing. It is used to defray the cost of placement materials and programs as well as the cost of the

    administration of the mandatory placement tests. This fee is non-refundable.

Review Questions

    The following questions are examples of the type of questions you may find on each section of the Accuplacer test. Simply reviewing these questions does not guarantee an improved Accuplacer score, but may serve as a

    useful starting point in beginning your preparation. Reading through each question and thoroughly

    understanding how each correct answer was derived will be an excellent starting point in your preparation to

    take this test!



    This test measures your ability to write effectively, which is critical to academic success.

    You will be allowed 50 minutes to review your directions and type your essay.

    Your writing sample will be scored on the basis of how effectively it communicates a whole message to the

    readers for the stated purpose. Your score will be based on your ability to express, organize, and support your

    opinions and ideas, not the position you take on the essay topic. The following five characteristics of writing will

    be considered:

    ? Focus

    The clarity with which you maintain your main idea or point of view

    ? Organization

    The clarity with which you structure your response and present a logical sequence of ideas

    ? Development and Support

    The extent to which you elaborate on your ideas and the extent to which you present supporting details

    ? Sentence Structure

    The effectiveness of your sentence structure

    ? Mechanical Conventions

    The extent to which your writing is free of errors in usage and mechanics

    You may not use any books or papers or other reference materials during the test. Remember to review your

    writing and make any changes you think will improve what you have written.

    WritePlacer Sample Topic Prepare a multiple-paragraph writing sample of about 300-600 words on the topic below. You should use the

    time available to plan, review, and edit what you have typed. Read the assignment carefully before you begin to


Some schools require each student to participate in an organized school sport chosen by the student. People at

    these schools argue that athletics is an important part of the educational experience and that there should be a

    rule requiring participation. Others argue that students should be free to decide whether or not they wish to

    participate in organized school sports.

Write an essay for a classroom instructor in which you take a position on whether participation in organized

    school athletics should be required. Be sure to defend your position with logical arguments and appropriate



Reading Comprehension

In an ACCUPLACER placement test, there are two primary types of Reading Comprehension questions.

    ? The first type of question consists of a reading passage followed by a question based on the text. Both

    short and long passages are provided. The reading passages can also be classified according to the kind

    of information processing required, including explicit statements related to the main idea, explicit

    statements related to a secondary idea, application, and inference.

    ? The second type of question, sentence relationships, presents two sentences followed by a question

    about the relationship between these two sentences. The question may ask, for example, if the

    statement in the second sentence supports that in the first, if it contradicts it, or if it repeats the same


Reading Comprehension Sample Questions

Read the statement or passage and then choose the best answer to the question. Answer the

    question based on what is stated or implied in the statement or passage.

1. In the words of Thomas DeQuincey, ―It is notorious that the memory strengthens as you lay burdens upon

    it.‖ If, like most people, you have trouble recalling the names of those you have just met, try this: The next

    time you are introduced, plan to remember the names. Say to yourself, ―I’ll listen carefully; I’ll repeat each

    person’s name to be sure I’ve got it, and I will remember.‖ You’ll discover how effective this technique is

    and probably recall those names for the rest of your life.

    The main idea of the paragraph maintains that the memory

    A. always operates at peak efficiency.

    B. breaks down under great strain.

    C. improves if it is used often.

     D. becomes unreliable if it tires.

2. Unemployment was the overriding fact of life when Franklin D. Roosevelt became president of the United

    States on March 4, 1933. An anomaly of the time was that the government did not systematically collect

    statistics of joblessness; actually it did not start doing so until 1940. The Bureau of Labor Statistics later

    estimated that 12,830,000 persons were out of work in 1933, about one-fourth of a civilian labor force of

    more than 51 million.

    Roosevelt signed the Federal Emergency Relief Act on May 12, 1933. The president selected Harry L.

    Hopkins, who headed the New York relief program, to run FERA. A gifted administrator, Hopkins quickly put

    the program into high gear. He gathered a small staff in Washington and brought the state relief

    organizations into the FERA system. While the agency tried to provide all the necessities, food came first.

    City dwellers usually got an allowance for fuel, and rent for one month was provided in case of eviction.

    This passage is primarily about

    A. unemployment in the 1930s.

    B. the effect of unemployment on United States families.

    C. President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s presidency.

     D. President Roosevelt’s FERA program.

    3. It is said that a smile is universally understood. And nothing triggers a smile more universally than a taste of

    sugar. Nearly everyone loves sugar. Infant studies indicate that humans are born with an innate love of

    sweets. Based on statistics, a lot of people in Great Britain must be smiling because on average, every man,

    woman, and child in that country consumes 95 pounds of sugar each year.

    From this passage it seems safe to conclude that the English

    A. do not know that too much sugar is unhealthy.

    B. eat desserts at every meal.

    C. are fonder of sweets than most people.

    D. have more cavities than any other people.


4. With varying success, many women around the world today struggle for equal rights. Historically, women

    have achieved greater equality with men during periods of social adversity. The following factors initiated the greatest number of improvements for women: violent revolution, world war, and the rigors of pioneering in an undeveloped land. In all three cases, the essential element that improved the status of women was a shortage of men, which required women to perform many of society’s vital tasks.

    We can conclude from the information in this passage that

    A. women today are highly successful in winning equal rights.

    B. only pioneer women have been considered equal to men.

    C. historically, women have only achieved equality through force.

     D. historically, the principle of equality alone has not been enough to secure women equal rights.

    5 In 1848, Charles Burton of New York City made the first baby carriage, but people strongly objected to the

    vehicles because they said the carriage operators hit too many pedestrians. Still convinced that he had a

    good idea, Burton opened a factory in England. He obtained orders for the baby carriages from Queen

    Isabella II of Spain, Queen Victoria of England, and the Pasha of Egypt. The United States had to wait

    another 10 years before it got a carriage factory, and only 75 carriages were sold in the first year.

    Even after the success of baby carriages in England,

    A. Charles Burton was a poor man.

    B. Americans were still reluctant to buy baby carriages.

    C. Americans purchased thousands of baby carriages.

    D. the United States bought more carriages than any other country.

    6. All water molecules form six-sided structures as they freeze and become snow crystals. The shape of the

    crystal is determined by temperature, vapor, and wind conditions in the upper atmosphere. Snow crystals

    are always symmetrical because these conditions affect all six sides simultaneously. The purpose of the passage is to present

    A. a personal observation.

    B. a solution to a problem.

    C. actual information.

    D. opposing scientific theories.

Directions for questions 710

    For the questions that follow, two underlined sentences are followed by a question or statement. Read the

    sentences, then choose the best answer to the question or the best completion of the statement.

7. The Midwest is experiencing its worst drought in 15 years.

    Corn and soybean prices are expected to be very high this year.

    What does the second sentence do?

    A. It restates the idea found in the first.

    B. It states an effect.

    C. It gives an example.

    D. It analyzes the statement made in the first.

8. Social studies classes focus on the complexity of our social environment.

    The subject combines the study of history and the social sciences and promotes skills in citizenship.

    What does the second sentence do?

    A. It expands on the first sentence.

    B. It makes a contrast.

    C. It proposes a solution.

     D. It states an effect.


9. Knowledge of another language fosters greater awareness of cultural diversity among the peoples of the


    Individuals who have foreign language skills can appreciate more readily other peoples’ values and ways of


    How are the two sentences related?

    A. They contradict each other.

    B. They present problems and solutions.

    C. They establish a contrast.

    D. They repeat the same idea.

10. Serving on a jury is an important obligation of citizenship.

    Many companies allow their employees paid leaves of absence to serve on juries.

    What does the second sentence do?

    A. It reinforces what is stated in the first.

    B. It explains what is stated in the first.

    C. It expands on the first.

     D. It draws a conclusion about what is stated in the first.

Sentence Skills

In an ACCUPLACER placement test, there are two types of Sentence Skills questions.

    ? The first type is sentence correction questions that require an understanding of sentence structure.

    These questions ask you to choose the most appropriate word or phrase for the underlined portion of

    the sentence.

    ? The second type is construction shift questions. These questions ask that a sentence be rewritten

    according to the criteria shown while maintaining essentially the same meaning as the original


    Within these two primary categories, the questions are also classified according to the skills being tested. Some

    questions deal with the logic of the sentence, others with whether or not the answer is a complete sentence,

    and others with the relationship between coordination and subordination.

    Sentence Skills Sample Questions Directions for questions 15 Select the best version of the underlined part of the sentence. The first choice is the same as the original

    sentence. If you think the original sentence is best, choose the first answer.

    1. Stamp collecting being a hobby that is sometimes used in the schools to teach economics and social studies.

    A. being a hobby that is

    B. is a hobby because it is

    C. which is a hobby

    D. is a hobby

2. Knocked sideways, the statue looked as if it would fall.

    A. Knocked sideways, the statue looked

    B. The statue was knocked sideways, looked

    C. The statue looked knocked sideways

     D. The statue, looking knocked sideways,


3. To walk, biking, and driving are Pat’s favorite ways of getting around.

    A. To walk, biking, and driving

    B. Walking, biking, and driving

    C. To walk, biking, and to drive

    D. To walk, to bike, and also driving

4. When you cross the street in the middle of the block, this is an example of jaywalking.

    A. When you cross the street in the middle of the block, this

    B. You cross the street in the middle of the block, this

    C. Crossing the street in the middle of the block

    D. The fact that you cross the street in the middle of the block

5. Walking by the corner the other day, a child, I noticed, was watching for the light to change.

    A. a child, I noticed, was watching

    B. I noticed a child watching

    C. a child was watching, I noticed,

    D. there was, I noticed, a child watching

    Directions for questions 610 Rewrite the sentence in your head following the directions given below. Keep in mind that your

    new sentence should be well written and should have essentially the same meaning as the original


6. It is easy to carry solid objects without spilling them, but the same cannot be said of liquids.

    Rewrite, beginning with

    Unlike liquids,

    The next words will be

    A. it is easy to

    B. we can easily

    C. solid objects can easily be

    D. solid objects are easy to be

7. Although the sandpiper is easily frightened by noise and light, it will bravely resist any force that threatens

    its nest.

    Rewrite, beginning with

    The sandpiper is easily frightened by noise and light,

    The next words will be

    A. but it will bravely resist

    B. nevertheless bravely resisting

    C. and it will bravely resist

     D. even if bravely resisting

8. If he had enough strength, Todd would move the boulder.

    Rewrite, beginning with

    Todd cannot move the boulder The next words will be

    A. when lacking

    B. because he

    C. although there

    D. without enough


9. The band began to play, and then the real party started.

    Rewrite, beginning with

    The real party started The next words will be

    A. after the band began

    B. and the band began

    C. although the band began

    D. the band beginning

10. Chris heard no unusual noises when he listened in the park.

    Rewrite, beginning with

    Listening in the park, The next words will be

    A. no unusual noises could be heard

    B. then Chris heard no unusual noises

    C. and hearing no unusual noises

     D. Chris heard no unusual noises


This test measures your ability to perform basic arithmetic operations and to solve problems that involve

    fundamental arithmetic concepts. The Arithmetic test is divided into three types of questions:

    ? Operations with whole numbers and fractions: Topics included in this category are addition,

    subtraction, multiplication, division, recognizing equivalent fractions and mixed numbers, and


    ? Operations with decimals and percents: Topics include addition, subtraction, multiplication, and

    division with decimals. Percent problems, recognition of decimals, fraction and percent

    equivalencies, and problems involving estimation are also given.

    ? Applications and problem solving: Topics include rate, percent, and measurement problems; simple

    geometry problems; and distribution of a quantity into its fractional parts.

    Sample Questions

Solve the following problems and select your answer from the choices given. You may use scrap

    paper. Remember, no calculators are permitted on Accuplacer.

1. 2.75 + .003 + .158 =

    A. 4.36

    B. 2.911

    C. 0.436

    D. 2.938

2. 7.86 × 4.6 =

    A. 36.156

    B. 36.216

    C. 351.56

    D. 361.56


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