Placement Testing FAQ

Q: Does my son have to take the tests?

A: Placement tests are optional and are for students who wish to place into a more advanced level of the course. With students coming from many different academic backgrounds, the tests are Prep’s way of gauging each student’s academic ability. Our goal is to place your son in an appropriate course that will challenge but not overwhelm him.

Q: What kind of math testing is offered?

A: The math department offers an Algebra Placement Test to interested students who have taken Algebra in 8th grade. Because of the disparity in both depth and scope of material covered in Middle School Algebra courses and to ensure that all Prep students have a consistent and solid foundation in Algebra, students must take a placement test to place out of Algebra 1. Most freshmen do take Algebra I, which is more rigorous and broader in scope than standard Middle School Algebra courses. The math program is designed to be flexible and it is possible for freshmen who start with Algebra I to take an AP Calculus class before they graduate. View the math sequence here.

Q: My son took Geometry in middle school. Is there a placement test for Geometry as well?

A: Yes. He would need to take the Geometry test in addition to the Algebra test. Please take the Geometry test on a separate day. Do not plan on taking both on the same day.

Q: What is the difference between Biology and Honors Biology:

A: Honors Biology is a rigorous course that approaches the subject from more of an analytical rather than conceptual viewpoint. Students who have an inclination towards and interest in science should take the Biology Placement Test to be considered for Honors Biology. More information on the honors science courses is available in the academic course catalog.

Q: How long are the tests?

A: Students are given two hours each for Algebra and Geometry. Many will finish after 1.5 hours. The language tests will take about an hour.

Q: My son is a transfer student. Does he need to take the math placement test?

A: Sophomore transfers will automatically be placed in Geometry and junior transfers will automatically be placed in Algebra II/Trig. For any other placement, a test must be taken. Please contact Bear Altemus, Registrar, to schedule your testing.

Q: My son is an international student. How can he take the placement test?

A: Tests will be administered when students arrive on campus in August. Please contact Bear Altemus, Registrar, for more information.

Q: When is placement testing offered?

A: Dates are Wednesday, May 29 from 3:30 - 6:30 p.m.; Saturday, June 1 from 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.; Tuesday, June 4 from 3:30 - 6:30 p.m. If you are taking more than one test, please come on separate days.

Q: What do I need to bring for the test?

A: Please bring two #2 pencils. No calculators are allowed for the math tests. Students are welcome to bring a bottle of water and a small snack.

Q: When will we know the results of the test?

A: Students will receive their tentative list of courses in late June, which will include the results of any placement tests. An actual class schedule will be sent home in late July and books may be purchased at that time.