FAQs

What is assessment?

Assessment testing is one of the “Steps to Success” – the process for getting into Sacramento City College.  The “Steps to Success” give you the information you need for a good start in college.  Assessment tests are used to recommend English, English as a Second Language (ESL) and Math course placements which are prerequisites to many classes you will take as part of your certificate, AA/AS Degree or transfer program.  For these reasons, it is necessary for you to have your assessment results before you see a SCC counselor.

Do I need to take an Assessment Test?

Take an assessment test if you:

  • Are a new student and have never attended college
  • Are planning to earn a degree and/or certificate, and/or transfer to a university;
  • Are taking a course that requires a prerequisite in English, English as a Second Language (ESL), Reading and/or Math;
  • Are applying for the Vocational Nursing Program (LVN), Register Nurse (RN) and Dental Hygiene.

What if I completed coursework at another college or university?

If you have a college degree, you are exempt from placement testing. However, if you plan to enroll in any English, ESL or math course(s), you should take your unofficial transcript(s) to the Counseling office in Rodda North 147 for review. A counselor will review your previous course work and let you know if you need further assessment.

What are the fees for taking the test?

Testing is free.

 

Do I need to register or make an appointment to take a test?

You must complete an application at http://www.losrios.edu/lrc/lrc_app.php and have a Los Rios Student ID number in order to take an assessment test. No appointment or registration is required. English, reading, math, Myers-Briggs and Strong Interest Inventories are done on a walk-in basis, first-come, first-served during our open testing hours. English as a Second Language (ESL), English Essay, Ability to Benefit (ATB) and Chemistry are offered at specified times. For more information about testing schedule please click on the “Testing Calendar” link at http://www.scc.losrios.edu/assessment or call the Assessment Center at 916-558-2541.

What do I need to bring for the test?

You need to know your Los Rios student ID number and must bring any type of photo identification. Acceptable forms of photo identification include: driver license, high school ID, college ID, current state or federal ID card, current passport, a naturalization card or certificate of citizenship. The ATB test requires a government issued ID card. Pencils and scratch paper will be provided.

 

I’m a new student. What tests should I take? How many tests do I need to take?

Most new students take both either English or English as a Second Language (ESL) and Math tests.

  • The English assessment includes: Reading Comprehension and Sentence Skills (both on a computer) and the English Essay (paper/pencil test) if placed below English Writing 300 on the computer portion. The English assessment will result in both reading and English placements.
  • The Reading test may be taken separately for placement if necessary, however it is a required part of the English assessment and must be taken at the same time as Sentence Skills for an English placement.
  • The ESL assessment is a two part test. The first part is the ESL Essay, and the second part is the computerized reading, grammar and listening tests.
  • The Math assessment is made up of 3 tests: Arithmetic, Elementary Algebra and College Level Math. Most students take 1 or 2 of these tests.

 

Do I need to take the English Essay?

Only students who have already taken the computerized English assessment and the result indicates that “You must complete the English essay to receive your English placement” are required to take an English Essay Assessment Test.

 

Are there sample questions that I can preview before the test?

Yes, you may review the study guides available online at http://www.scc.losrios.edu/assessment

 

May I use a dictionary, calculators or any other resources?

You may not use dictionaries, calculators or other resources during the assessment tests. You may use a calculator only on the Chemistry test.

 

Should I take the English or English as a Second Language (ESL) test?

If you are a bilingual English speaker who needs help with grammar, take the ESL assessment. This assessment will provide recommended course placements in ESL classes. If you are a native speaker of English, or a bilingual English speaker who has a strong command of English grammar, take the English assessment which will provide recommended placements in English classes.

 

How long does the test take?

The time limit for the English Essay or ESL Essay is 35 minutes. The computerized tests are not timed. The average time of completion for the English assessment is about 60 minutes, for math it is about 30 minutes, and for ESL assessment is about 2.5 hours.

 

How soon can I get my results?

The results of the computerized assessment tests are available to students immediately after completion of the tests. The English Essay results will be available four (4) working days after taking your essay. The ESL testing results will be available four (4) working days after taking your test.

English as a Second Language (ESL) Retest Policy – The ESL assessment testing process determines placement of an entering student and remains valid for a period of two years. It may not be retaken within two years unless there is a valid reason for the exception. A challenge process exists for students already enrolled in courses who provide evidence that they meet the prerequisites of a course higher than their current placement/enrollment level. Please contact the ESL Chair in RHS 226 with any questions.

 

When do my assessment results expire?

Effective February 16, 2013 – To calculate your assessment expiration date for tests taken after February 16, 2013, use the table below.  Go to either the September 15 or February 15 date that follows your test date (whichever comes first) and add two calendar years. Your assessment results will be valid proof of prerequisites for classes beginning before that expiration date. If the class you want begins after the expiration date of your assessment results, then you must retake the assessment test.

For Example:

If you took the assessment between:Your assessment expires:
February 16, 2013 and September 15, 2013September 15, 2015
September 16, 2013 and February 15, 2014February 15, 2016
February 16, 2014 and September 15, 2014September 15, 2016
September 16, 2014 and February 15, 2015February 15, 2017

 

If you assessed prior to February 16, 2013, your assessment results will be valid for 3 calendar years (36 months) from the date of the test.

 

What if I fail the placement test? Can I retake it?

The placement test is not a “pass” or “fail” test and does not affect your admission to Sacramento City College. The purpose of assessment testing is to place you in the appropriate English, ESL and Math courses to help you succeed in college.

 

May I take only the math test?

Yes. There are three math tests: Arithmetic, Elementary Algebra and College Level Math. You will begin math testing with either the Arithmetic or Elementary Algebra Test. The computer selects which test to present depending on how you answer certain background questions. If you obtain a high score on the Elementary Algebra Test, you will be able to take the College Level Math test.

 

What is the Reading Competency for Graduation test?

Students who have not completed English Reading 310 or ESLR 340 with a grade of “C” or better may take the Reading Competency for Graduation test to meet the reading proficiency requirement for Los Rios an AA/AS degree. Effective October 18, 2013, students are able to attempt the Reading Competency test 3 times in the Los Rios District. (ARC, CRC, FLC & SCC.) The first placement test District wide counts as the first attempt. After the first placement test, students may take another test that is used only for Reading Competency purposes 2 additional times. Students who do not pass the competency test must take English Reading 310 or ESL 340 and pass with a “C” or better in order to graduate.

 

What is Math Competency for Graduation?

Students may take a Math Competency for Graduation to satisfy the Los Rios AA/AS math graduation requirement. You must bring a Math Competency Information Form from a counselor on the day of the test.

 

Do I need to take the Chemistry Diagnostic Test?

All students intending to enroll in CHEM 400 and who have not completed CHEM 300 with a grade of “C” or better (within the last year), have to take the chemistry test in order to satisfy the course prerequisite. You may use any type of calculator on the chemistry test. The time limit for the chemistry test is 45 minutes and it consists of 44 questions. Topics included in the test can be found at http://www.scc.losrios.edu/assessment.

 

What do I do if I have a disability that would affect my testing?

If you need assistance, other than extra time or zoom text, while taking your computerized or essay assessments, and you have a verifiable disability that requires these accommodations, contact the Disability Resource Center – Temporary Building 8 Room 2, (916) 558-2087.