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Placement Testing

Math and Language Placement Testing

The University System of Maryland requires each institution to formulate its own testing and placement policies.  At Frostburg, these policies require the assessment of all entering students' basic skills in English, mathematics, and reading, and mandate that students needing to develop basic skills in these areas be placed in appropriate courses.  All entering first-year students with fewer than 13 credits are administered all three basic skills tests.  Transfer students with more than 12 credits who have not transferred Freshman Composition and/or a college-level mathematics course that meets the FSU General Education Program or their intended major's requirement are required to take the appropriate placement test(s).

Placement Test Format

Language skills are assessed by two tests: A twenty (20) minute essay on a prompt developed by the Writing Specialist and the Nelson-Denny Reading Test (20 minutes).

Mathematics skills are assessed by one of two multiple-choice Mathematics Placement Tests, the Basic or Standard Test, developed by FSU faculty.  The Basic Placement Test will be administered to students who scored below a certain SAT.  The test consists of 40 questions divided into two parts: arithmetic and algebra I.  The Standard Test consists of 50 questions divided into three parts: algebra I, algebra II and trigonometry.

Look at some Sample Placement Tests

Placement Policy

Students scoring below the minimal competence levels are placed in designated sections of Freshman Composition (ENGL 101), Critical Reading (ENGL 105), or Pre-Algebra (DVMT 095).  For additional information regarding placement within these sections, please see the Placement Charts page.  Freshman Composition is a three-credit course, which, upon completion, satisfies a portion of the General Education Program.  Critical Reading is a three-credit course that counts as elective credit toward graduation.  Pre-Algebra is a no-credit course that does not satisfy the General Education requirement in mathematics.  For descriptions of other mathematics courses, please refer to the current FSU Catalog.

Students unsuccessful in raising their skills in the first semester are required to re-enroll in the relevant course(s) the second semester.  Students who fail to meet the standards at the end of the first two semesters of enrollment will be academically dismissed from the University.