Frequently Asked Questions
College Placement Test at State College of Florida
What is an Entry-Level Assessment?
The entry assessment at State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF), consists of the College Placement Test from the McCann Associates. Test subjects are reading, writing and math. Application to State College of Florida is required before assessment and there is no additional charge for the College Placement Test. The test takes approximately 3 hours and is given Monday to Friday. To take the test, please schedule your appointment online at scf.edu/testing.
Students may also present American College Testing (ACT) scores and/or Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) scores as alternative placement test scores. The State Board of Education (SBE) has set the cutoff scores for placement into college credit level as opposed to college preparatory courses.
What is P.E.R.T.?
- Placement test for incoming college students
- Nationally normed test customized and delivered by educational institutions
- Fast, accurate determination of whether a student has the skills to take a freshman course or would benefit most from developmental work
- Extensively used by community colleges, four year colleges, and technical schools around the world
Requirements for the placement test
Whether full-time or part-time, a student must complete a state approved entry assessment as indicated:
- Prior to participating in new student orientation/advisement and registration if he or she is a degree-seeking student
- Prior to registration for the first session if he or she is an academic enrichment, dual enrollment or early admissions student
- Prior to registration for any course that has a specific entry assessment score as a prerequisite
- Entry assessment scores must be less than two years old
- For students with disabilities, the college placement test is available in altered format
Who must take the test?
The college placement test is required for all entering students seeking to earn a degree from State College of Florida or for those students who want to take English, mathematics or reading courses, or other courses that have placement test scores as prerequisites.
To evaluate the level of preparation and to place students in appropriate courses, the College requires entry assessment in the skill areas of English, reading and mathematics. To satisfy entry assessment requirements, a student needs to take the college placement test unless ACT and/or SAT scores place one in college level course work. Tests used for placement must be taken within two years of planned attendance.
Students who have taken the ACT and/or SAT and have scores that place them into college level coursework in English, reading and/or mathematics may use these scores as an alternative to the corresponding sections of the college placement test.
Proof of completion of the ACT or SAT test taken within the last two years, and scores also are acceptable.
Are there any fees for taking the college placement test?
Application to State College of Florida is required before assessment and there is no additional charge for the college placement test. The assessment/testing centers at State College of Florida are open test sites. Based on agreements with other institutions, State College of Florida students who are not applying for SCF admission, should contact the Assessment/Testing Center for their testing fees by call 941-752-5238 or 941-408-1540.
How Are The College Placement Test Scores Used?
Entry assessment scores will be used for course level placement. Each of the three skill areas of English, reading and mathematics are independent of each other. A student may place at the college level in one or more areas and at college preparatory level in other areas. If skills are below the levels defined by the state as required for successful performance in a college credit program, the College may limit a student to college preparatory courses and any other instruction for which he or she may be prepared.
When and where are the tests given?
The college placement test is given at the Assessment/Testing Centers on two campus locations.
The Bradenton Campus Assessment/Testing Center is located in the Student Services Center, second floor of Building 1 in room 201 with placement testing appointments only scheduled via the web at scf.edu/testing available Monday through Friday.
For further information, consult the Web site at www.scf.edu or call 941-752-5238.
The Venice Campus Assessment/Testing Center located in the Student Services Center, Building 100 in room 154 offers testing by appointment only, you can schedule your test at scf.edu/testing
Are transfer students required to take the college placement test?
Test scores are not required for transfer or readmission students who have satisfactorily completed college level English, mathematics and/or reading courses. For exceptions to requirements for taking the placement test, students should contact an advisor.
What should I do to prepare for the test?
Students are encouraged to prepare for the college placement test by reviewing the Student Guide to the Computerized Placement Tests provided at www.scf.edu/Testing. This guide provides sample questions and an overview of how the test works and outlines the skills necessary for success on this test.
What is adaptive testing?
Each test is adaptive and the computer automatically determines which questions are presented to you based on your responses to prior questions. This technique selects just the right questions to ask without being too easy or too difficult. Each test is untimed so that you can give each question as much thought as you wish. However, once you have selected and confirmed your answer, you cannot return to that question.
How do I answer questions on the test?
Because you take the computer placement test on a computer, you do not have to answer as many questions as on traditional paper-and-pencil tests. There are 30 questions on each section of the placement test. The questions appear one at a time on the computer screen and are ultiple choice, all you will need to do is use the mouse to select an answer. When you have completed the question and confirmed your answer, a new screen will appear with your next question.
Should I guess on questions that I don't know?
The college placement test is an adaptive test and questions are chosen for you on the basis of your answers to previous questions. Because the test works this way, you must answer every question when it is first given. You can change your answer to a particular question before moving on to the next question, but you cannot leave a question out or come back to it later to change your answer. Once you go on to the next question, you cannot return to the question. If you do not know the answer to a question, try to eliminate one or more of the choices. Then pick from the remaining choices.
How will the computer deliver the testing?
You will take the tests using a computer using either the keyboard or the mouse to enter your answers and supply other information. A Testing Technician is present should you have any questions or problems. The Testing Technician has the ability to resolve difficulties that may occur.
What should I do at the end of the test?
At the end of your testing session, a Student Report will appear on the monitor. Print out the test results and the Testing Technician will transfer this information to the SCF's Placement Test Results form indicating your class placement.
What if I have questions about my class placement?
The Advising Centers on each campus are staffed with professional advisors who interpret test scores in individual conferences with the students.
How often can I take the placement test?
SCF allows students to take the placement test one time per term, limited to twice a year. A term is defined as Fall, Spring or Summer per the official academic calendar.
What is the confidentiality of the tests?
Your test scores and the information you provide when taking the tests will only be provided to Mc Cann Associates, to the college at which you are taking the tests or at which you are enrolled, and to the state to meet state information requirements. The information may be used for counseling, advisement and placement purposes and may be used to document whether or not you have met state testing requirements. McCann Associates may also use it for research and training purposes. Your test information will not be disclosed for any other purpose without your permission. If you have any questions about confidentiality, please see the Testing Technician.