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Placement Testing

An integral part of your academic success will be starting in the right courses – taking the correct Math and English courses in your freshman year can affect your entire college experience. Placement is the way we decide which courses are best for you. Placement is based on:

  • your ACT/SAT scores 
  • placement assessments 
  • successful completion of prerequisite courses 
  •  If you choose a major that has a foreign language requirement, you have the option of taking the Spanish Placement test

How do I schedule placement testing?

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, placement testing will be conducted online.  To request an appointment or to request more information, contact:

Molly Beth Alvaro, MA

Accessibility Specialist 

Office of Accessibility Services/ WVU Potomac State College

Keyser, WV 26726

Phone: 304-263-6700 

How am I Placed in Math and English Classes?

WVU Potomac State College is committed to student success. Our goal is to help students succeed academically and to progress toward graduation in a timely manner. With this in mind, students are placed into Math and English courses based on prerequisites or placement scores. Students may place by ACT Math and English score, SAT Math and English score, scores on the ALEKS Math Assessment, scores on the ACCUPLACER Sentence Skills assessment.

English Placement

Students who have no ACT/SAT scores on file or have below an 18 ACT (English section only) or 480 SAT (ERW section only, taken after March 1, 2016) or 450 SAT (Verbal section only, taken prior to March 1, 2016), have the option to take the ACCUPLACER Next Generation Writing Assessment or take ENGL 100 (2 credit studio course) along with ENGL 101. 

View sample ACCUPLACER Sentence Skills test

ACCUPLACER is not timed.  You may retake the test one time. 

ACCUPLACER Practice Tests (Next Generation Writing Assessment):

https://accuplacer.collegeboard.org/accuplacer/pdf/next-generation-sample-questions-writing.pdf

Sign up to take the English Placement Test

Math Placement

Students who have no ACT/SAT scores on file or have below a 19 ACT (Math section only) or 510 SAT (Math section only, taken after March 1, 2016) or 460 SAT (Math section only, taken prior to March 1, 2016), have the option to take the ALEKS Math placement assessment or take a first-level math course (MATH 121 with co-req or MATH 122, depending on the major).  Two hours are allowed to complete the test.  Calculators will be provided by ALEKS, when needed 


Mathematics Requirements by Major  

Placement Requirements by Math Course   


ALEKS is a powerful artificial-intelligence based assessment tool that uses adaptive questioning to quickly and accurately determine exactly what a student knows and doesn’t know to assist in course placement. The assessment is approximately 35 questions in length. Calculators are provided on-screen within ALEKS, so students are  not allowed access to any additional calculators, websites, or other unapproved aids when completing the assessment.

ALEKS reports its findings to the student, provides opportunity for improving knowledge and skills, and identifies an appropriate level for course placement.

After you have completed your test, an email will be sent to your MIX account. If you are interested in retesting, ALEKS will provide you with instructions on how to utilize practice modules. You must complete your modules  before retesting.

You may  retake the ALEKS math placement assessment, if necessary — by scheduling an appointment with Academic Success Center Program Coordinator Jennifer Jones at 304-788-7144.


Additional resources are available to help students who do not initially place into the math requirement for their major.  

Spanish Placement

The Spanish placement test is a computerized test with results immediately given. It must be taken prior to the end of the add period (the first week of classes), it may be taken only once, and results should be shared with the Spanish instructor to confirm placement. Students who complete the course they place into with a B or higher may receive back credit for the lower course(s).