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English Language for Academic Purposes (ELAP) at Montgomery College

ESL Placement Test Information

Accuplacer ESL Test

Most of the placement test is computerized. The parts of the computerized test are the following: listening comprehension, language (grammar), reading comprehension and sentences meaning (vocabulary). The part of the test that is not computerized is the 25-minute writing sample; you will be asked to write on a given topic. The topic will be familiar and does not require special knowledge. Sample Test Questions 

Placement depends on the scores from all parts of the exam. The writing samples are scored and the placements are determined by two or more ESL professionals. As a result of the test, you may place into any of the following courses/programs:

  • ENGL 101 or ENGL 101A (transferable credit; student is eligible for credit coursework)
  • ELAP (no credit)
  • Developmental writing and reading (noncredit courses for native speakers of American English with weak academic writing and reading skills)
  • Continuing Education or Adult Education

Accurate placement is important. To ensure accurate placement, all students are given a diagnostic exam on the first day of class. You will be notified if your placement needs to be changed.


Test-Taking Tips 

  1. Placement tests determine which courses you can take. Take them seriously.
  2. Write as well as you can on the writing part of the test: plan carefully. Write as well as you can on the test: plan carefully. Write as much as you can. Edit your writing to improve the grammar.
  3. You will have 25 minutes for the writing test, but the other parts of the test are untimed.
  4. Get plenty of sleep the night before the test.

Montgomery College

Montgomery County, MD


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