The ACCUPLACER exam is a Computerized Placement Test (CPT) that is an important part of your entrance requirements. The CPT is an adaptive assessment of your algebra skills. This means that the computer determines which questions will be asked based on your answers to the previous questions. The exam is untimed so you can spend as much time on any question as you wish, but you can not return to a question once you have verified your answer.

We strongly encourage you to take this exam seriously and prepare for it before you take it. A good preparation can make the difference between passing and failing. While you will not be denied admission based upon your score, it will be used to place you in an appropriate mathematics course. In particular, students who do not pass the exam will be placed in a "plus" section of one of our courses. These "plus" sections will met an extra hour per week for students to work on their algebra skills, however students in these sections will receive only three credits for these courses.

To help you prepare for the exam we would like to offer the following suggestions:

  • Spend some time reviewing your algebra skills. Topics on the exam include:
    • Operations with integrers and rational numbers including
      • computations with integers and negative rationals
      • the use of absolute values
      • ordering
    • Operations with algebraic expressions such as
      • evaluating algebraic expressions
      • adding and subtracting polynomials
      • multiplying and factoring plynomials
      • evaluation of positive rational roots and exponents
      • simplifying algebraic fractions
    • Solutions of equations, inequalities and word problems.

If you need to, purchase a review text. Any college algebra text should suffice. Also texts such as Bob Miller's Algebra for the Clueless, Schaum’s Outline of Elementary Algebra by Rich Barnett and Philip Schmidt might be helpful. These texts can be purchased at any major bookstore. There are several copies of the Schaum’s Outline of College Algebra in the mathematics department library which you will be able to use. However this text is more advanced, and it might not be as helpful.

We have also posted several questions on the web which should give you an idea of what to expect on the exam. We have also provided answers and detailed solutions to these problems.

If you have any questions about the exam please contact Professor Hotchkiss at (413) 572-5575.