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Compass Testing FAQ

What is Compass?

The ACT Compass is an untimed, computerized test that helps Azusa Pacific University evaluate your skills and place you into appropriate courses. ACT Compass offers tests in reading, writing, math, writing essay, and English as a Second Language (ESL). You will receive your ACT Compass test results immediately upon completion of testing, and your score report will include placement messages informing you what courses you should take and how to register.

Why do I need to take the Compass?

At APU, we use Compass testing for course placement purposes. Students are identified as candidates for Compass testing based on incoming, qualifying SAT/ACT scores. Please see the Placement Testing Information page for more-detailed information regarding the specific qualifying scores that result in each course placement. If your incoming SAT/ACT scores have qualified you for ENGL 099,* ENGL 100,** MATH 090,*** MATH 091,*** MATH 095,*** or MATH 096,*** we would encourage you to take a Compass placement test in the appropriate subject area(s) as soon as possible, as the placement results will determine the course(s) in which you will be enrolled for your first semester at Azusa Pacific University.

Do I have to take all portions of the Compass exam (like the ACT/SAT), or can I simply schedule the test(s) that apply to me?

You may schedule an appointment to take only the test(s) that apply to you.

If I need to take more than one portion of the Compass exam, do I have to take all of the tests during one sitting?

No, you are able to make multiple appointments to come in and take each portion of the Compass exam separately, or you may schedule an appointment to take all of the tests that you need during one sitting. The choice is up to you.

How do I schedule a Compass test?

You may arrange to take a Compass placement test either at the Learning Enrichment Center, located on the Azusa Pacific University campus in Azusa, California, or you may arrange to take the Compass at a remote location, as arranged through the Learning Enrichment Center. Steps to schedule both options are outlined below.

Steps to schedule a Compass test through the Learning Enrichment Center (LEC) at Azusa Pacific University in Azusa:

Steps to schedule the Compass at a remote testing site:

How do I prepare for the Compass Exam?

Visit the ACT Compass website to find sample questions, additional downloadable Compass practice material, and helpful test-taking tips and strategies to help you prepare for the exam.

Note: The asterisks following the course listings above indicate that you should schedule the following portions of the Compass exam if you have been placed in the indicated course:

* = Reading
** = Writing
*** = Math