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Department of Reading, ESL and Linguistics

Rockville Campus

ESL Reading Assessment

You should take the ESL Accuplacer (LOEP) Test if you did not learn American English as your first language and did not attend at least 10 years of school (elementary, middle, high school) in the United States -- U.S. citizens and residents as well as international students. The test results determine English, ESL or reading placement and assessment levels. Non-native speakers of English who wish to take the Math section of the Accuplacer Test must take the ESL Accuplacer (LOEP) test first.


The ESL Accuplacer (LOEP) Test (sample) includes both multiple choice questions and a writing sample and lasts approximately 2 1/2 to 3 hours. This test does not include any math questions. 

At the counseling session (IMAP), you will receive your scores and recommendations for classes. You will be able to take the Math section of the Accuplacer depending on your English scores. You may be exempt if you meet certain criteria.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are placement levels? You must take assessment tests, including the ESL Accuplacer (LOEP) test, to determine your placement level. Placement levels indicate the specific courses you must complete in English, Reading and Speech. You may not register for all higher level courses until you complete these course requirements.

What are assessment levels?

Assessment levels are the minimum levels of English, reading or math that may be required for any course in the College Catalog. For example, the Catalog states that CS 100 requires specific assessment levels in English, reading and math. You cannot register for any course with a required assessment level until your academic record shows that you have met that level.

Why do only non-native speakers of English take the ESL Accuplacer (LOEP) test?


The ESL Accuplacer (LOEP) test is designed for students who learned American English after already speaking at least one other language. It produces accurate results for these students.

I graduated from a Montgomery County High School. Isn't that enough proof that I speak English? The ESL Accuplacer (LOEP) and Accuplacer tests are used to assure that all degree seeking Montgomery College students have adequate English language skills to succeed academically. The tests are not used to see whether you "speak English," but whether you are academically prepared in English for college level courses.
What happens if my ESL Accuplacer (LOEP) score is not high enough to take EN 101? You will be required to take one or more courses in the AELP Program (ESL classes).
What happens to a student who takes the Accuplacer and scores below the level for EN 101? The student must take developmental English classes designed for native speakers of English

When should I take the ESL Accuplacer (LOEP) test?

You should take the exam at least 6-8 weeks before the start of your first term at Montgomery College. Registration begins very early each semester, and many AELP classes fill quickly. Waiting too late to take the ESL Accuplacer (LOEP) test may cause you to miss your opportunity to study for an entire semester.

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