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ECC’s Testing Center offers placement tests, make-up exams, and much more.

Testing can help make sure you’re taking the right classes and prepare you for your next step. Most of our services are designed for incoming ECC students, but we also offer tests for high school students and the broader community.

Testing Score Summary Chart

Placement Tests

If you’re an incoming ECC student, you may have to take placement tests in subjects like English and math to assess your skill levels and place you in the appropriate classes. The Testing Center offers workshops and practice tests to help you prepare for your placement exams.


Who needs to take placement tests?

You’ll have to take placement tests if:

  • You’re pursuing an ECC degree or certificate program that requires you to satisfy writing, reading, and/or math minimum competency requirements. Review minimum competencies procedure for more information.
  • You plan to enroll in courses requiring placement testing prerequisites, unless you can meet the prerequisites through ACT, SAT, PARRC, HiSET, or GED scores or prior college coursework
  • Your ACT scores are below 20 in English, 18 in reading, or 23 in math
  • Your SAT scores prior to March 2016 are below 540 on math, 450 on reading, or 490 on verbal
  • Your SAT scores effective March 2016 are below 570 in math, and 530 on the combined Reading/Writing Test
  • Your High School Equivalency GED math or reasoning through language arts scores are below 165
  • Your High School Equivalency HiSET math score is below 15 and reading score is below 15 with English essay below 4.

ACT Math, SAT Math, and ALEKS Math placement scores are valid for two years. ACT Reading or Writing, SAT Reading & Writing, and ECC’s Reading and Writing placement scores are valid for five years from the date the test is taken. All students must meet course prerequisites.

How do placement tests work?

Using a computer, you will write an essay of approximately 2 pages in length. You will select one of three topics to focus your essay response. You are allowed to use a dictionary, "Rules of Thumb" grammar handbook, spelling and grammar check, and scratch paper.

An effective essay will include each of the following:

  1. A thesis or main idea;
  2. Several paragraphs of sufficient, relevant, and specific detail or examples related to the topic selected based on your experience, observations, or readings;
  3. Good organization, including an introduction, several body paragraphs, and a conclusion;
  4. Correct grammar, spelling, and sentence structure.

Before you turn in your completed essay, you should proofread (reread and correct) your essay. Allow two hours to adequately write the essay. English placement test results will be available within 5 business days. Please plan accordingly to have the English placement test results completed prior to registration. All placement test results can be viewed on the  accessECC Portal.

Your writing placement results expire in 5 years. If you do not complete your first ECC writing course within 5 years, you will need to redo your essay. Once you have completed an English class at ECC, you may retest only if you receive permission from your instructor or the placement coordinator. 

How can I prepare for my test?

We offer a variety of workshops and practice tests to help you prepare for placement exams, and we encourage you to make the most of them. The more you practice, the better you’ll do!

Get more information about placement tests.

Make Up Exams

If you missed a test, talk to your instructor about possibly making it up in the testing center.

Testing Accommodations

If you have a documented accommodation and need to arrange for testing, please make an appointment with the coordinator of ADA and student disability services by calling 847-214-7390.

Before You Take Your Test

  1. A valid photo ID is required for all testing such as: a driver license, passport, government issued ID card, military ID card or school ID with photo.
  2. Children are not permitted in the testing center.
  3. Food, beverages, hats, caps, hoodies, coats, bags, purses, watches, large jewelry, sunglasses are not permitted in the testing room.
  4. Electronic devices, cell phones, mechanical pencils and personal items are not permitted in the testing room. All electronic devices, cell phones must be turned off.
  5. Calculators or laptops are allowed for specific tests. If a personal calculator or laptop is allowed, it will be examined before testing.
  6. Open book and open note testing is only permitted with the consent of the testing company or home institution and the testing center has been notified in advance.
  7. Once a test is issued, it must be completed in one sitting.
  8. All non-related test material such as: cell phones, notes, etc. are to be left in your car or locked in the testing center's lockers or security bags.
  9. Turn in all testing materials including: scratch paper, rough drafts, notes, etc. to the testing personnel at the conclusion of testing.
  10. The testing area is a quiet area. No talking is allowed. Please be considerate of other test takers and maintain a quiet library-like atmosphere.
  11. The testing area is monitored by video surveillance cameras.
  12. Tests will not be administered 60 minutes prior to closing.
  13. Acts of dishonesty are subject to disciplinary actions.


Testing Center

Building B, Room B115
847-214-7150 or  847-214-7219
Fax: 847-608-5474

Office Hours
Monday through Thursday 9 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Friday and Saturday 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Summer Hours
Closed Fridays and Saturdays