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Reading Placement Test

To demonstrate college-ready reading skills, review the testing scores summary to determine if you need to take placement testing.

Reading Placement Test FAQ

Enrollment in any English course (ENG prefix) and many general education courses, such as Psychology, History, Sociology, etc., is based upon the demonstration of college-ready reading and writing skills. To demonstrate college-ready reading skills, you must take the ECC Reading Placement Test or meet one of the following criteria:

  1. 19 or higher on the Reading portion of the ACT or 480 on SAT reading and writing; or
  2. 4 or higher on the PARCC reading and writing assessment; or
  3. Successful completion with a C or higher of RDG 091 or LTC 099 at ECC or equivalent course at a regionally accredited college (official transcripts required); or
  4. Successful completion with a C or better in college-level courses at another college/university (official transcripts required); or
  5. High School cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher on an unweighted 4.0 scale; or
  6. GED score of 165 or higher or HiSet score of 15 or higher; or
  7. A minimum score on AP, CLEP, or IB exam.
  8. Attain the specified level on the ECC reading placement test.

Using a computer, you will read several texts and then respond to multiple-choice questions using what you have read. There are 30 questions on the College Success reading placement test. Keep in mind; you can return to re-read the passage at any time. Most questions fall into one of two categories: referring and reasoning. Referring items pose questions about material explicitly stated in the text. Reasoning items assess how well you make appropriate inferences, understand the text, and determine the specific meanings of difficult or unfamiliar words.

The questions will focus on tasks like:

  • Recognize the purpose of a passage.
  • Find important details and examples that support the author's point of view (stated and implied).
  • Recognize significant details that answer the questions of who, what, when, why, where, and how.
  • Compare two or more ideas.
  • Identify unstated causes, effects, reasons, or opinions.
  • Comprehend details and distinguish different points of view.
  • Define the vocabulary used in a passage.

Research shows that students who practice taking computerized tests and brush up on their reading comprehension skills before taking the ECC reading placement test tend to have scores more accurately reflect their abilities. Below are some online resources that provide reading comprehension practice or reading instruction that will help you prepare:

You will receive a score report at the end of the test which is available online within 24 to 48 hours after completing it.

If your reading placement test score is:

  • Compass = below 31, College Success = below 60
    • Prepare to retake the placement test.
  • Compass = 31-60, College Success = 60-78
    • Developmental course required. Enroll in LTC-099 (College Literacy)
  • Compass = 61-79, College Success = 79-94
    • Developmental courses are required. Enroll in RDG-091 (Advanced Academic Reading & Inquiry) or LTC-099 (College Literacy)
  • Compass = 80 or higher, College Success = 95 or higher
    • No developmental course is required. Enroll in college-ready courses.

Your reading placement results are valid for 5 years. Once you have completed a reading class at ECC, you may retest only if you receive permission from your instructor or the placement coordinator.


Testing Center

Building B, Room B115
Fax: 847-608-5474

Exam Registration

Monday through Thursday: 8 am to 7 pm
Friday: 8 am to 3 pm
Saturday: 9am to 3pm

*Note: The Testing Center is closed Tuesdays from 2 to 3 pm for a department meeting. All tests and materials are collected 15 minutes before closing.