The ability of a student to succeed in a program at Southwest Georgia Technical College (SWGTC) is greatly determined by the math and language skills possessed by the student. SWGTC is committed to assist each student achieve at his/her maximum potential. It is the philosophy of the College that a student is not helped by admitting him/her to a program in which he/she does not possess the basic educational skills needed to succeed. Therefore, all students applying for diploma, degree, and certificate programs must be assessed prior to acceptance to a program of study at the College. Students will then be admitted in accordance with the academic standards applicable to the program.
It is also the philosophy of SWGTC that assessment is far more comprehensive than the basic skills testing process. Assessment is the opportunity for and the responsibility of SWGTC to collect information about prospective students that is relevant to their educational experience. This information is used to assist each student to experience success in his/her educational endeavors.
I. SWGTC utilizes the state-approved assessment instruments (ASSET or COMPASS) to assess program readiness.
II. Assessment scores will be considered valid for placement purposes for a period of five years (60 months) and are transferable to any Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) college. Each Technical College will develop its own retesting policy and charges may apply.
III. ASSESSMENT/PLACEMENT TESTS
The ASSET, used by Southwest Georgia Technical College (SWGTC), is published by the American College Testing Program. The ASSET (Forms B2, C2, D2, and E2) is one of two Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) approved admission placement exams. Scoring is performed on software developed by ACT. The student’s raw score is automatically converted to a scaled score, which is used in determining the student’s admission status.
The COMPASS used by SWGTC is published by the American College Testing Program. The COMPASS is an untimed computerized assessment tool. Each test produces a placement recommendation based on the correct responses to items presented. The number of items presented by a test depends on the degree of certainty and pattern of responses to test items. The results, based on the major the student selects, are used in determining the student’s admission status.
IV. ADMINISTRATION OF THE PLACEMENT EXAM
Placement testing is administered through Admissions in Student Affairs by the designee assigned by the Vice President for Student Affairs. Persons administering the ASSET or COMPASS receive in- service training on administering the exam.
a. Each student shall be assessed prior to being accepted as an award seeking student into any credit program.
b. Each student will receive an interpretation of his/her assessment scores prior to beginning their educational experience.
c. Provisions will be made for the assessment of students with disabilities who need special assistance and consideration upon request and documentation.
V. CANDIDATES FOR PLACEMENT TESTING
Any applicant to a credit associate degree, diploma, or certificate program is required to undergo placement testing unless he/she can provide documentation of the following:
a. Passing grades of C or better in college-level English and college-level math courses from a regional or national accredited college, university, or other postsecondary institution recognized by the U. S. Department of Education at the time the coursework was completed. These courses must be the equivalent to the entry-level English and math courses required in the applicant’s chosen program of study.
b. Official scores on validated assessment instruments (such as ACT or SAT) or Georgia High School Graduation Test (GHSGT) in English provided that the scores are not more than five years old and meet the minimum score as follows:
|Verbal 480, Math 440
English 20, Reading 17, Math 19
|Verbal 430, Math 400
English 12, Reading 13, Math 17
English/Language Arts (ELA 235 or higher)
**A score of 235 or higher on the ELA portion of the GHSGT will ONLY exempt testing in writing and reading for placement into diplomas and technical certificate of credit programs. This will not exempt testing for degree seeking students.
VI. SCHEDULING FOR PLACEMENT TESTING
Placement tests are available on a walk-in basis Monday – Thursday 8:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Evening placement exams are scheduled and published each term.
VII. TESTING PROCEDURES
Applicants must register for the assessment exam with the Admissions Office. The assessment exam is a free service to all new applicants; however, there is a retest fee for each section of the exam. Each testing session is administered in sections as follows:
a. Completion of demographic information.
b. Skills testing.
c. Scoring - Applicants tested are given the option of waiting for test results or of scheduling an appointment to return at a more convenient time.
d. Post-test orientation – Career advisors review scores, outline steps to take for admissions or registration, and encourage applicants to complete financial aid forms and investigate other support services offered at SWGTC.
Students or applicants may be reassessed. Many students taking the placement exam fail one or more sections by only a few points. Many of these students do not need a full quarter of remediation through Learning Support classes; they simply need to be refreshed in areas with which they were familiar in the past, but have forgotten over time. Therefore, applicants who fail to meet the minimum scores for regular admissions are given one opportunity to retest. Students may choose one of two options prior to retesting; (1) utilize the SWGTC Tutoring Lab for eight (8) hours of short-term remediation; or (2) wait 30 days prior to retesting. There will be an additional charge for all retests.
XI. MAINTENANCE/POSTING OF SCORES
Test scores are posted in the following ways:
a. Scores are either given to the applicant during the post-test orientation or the applicant can schedule an appointment to return at a more convenient time.
b. Scores are distributed to appropriate admissions staff for the purpose of processing for admissions.
c. Scores are posted in Banner under “SOATEST” as part of the computerized permanent record.
d. Assessment results are maintained electronically.
X. SPECIAL CONDITIONS
Applicants with special disabling conditions must notify the Admissions Office of special need prior to the testing session so that special testing arrangements may be made. For visually- impaired applicants, a large print version of the test booklet is available. For blind applicants, readers may be employed to assist in administering the placement test. For learning disabled applicants, extra time may be given for completion. Other assistance may be given depending on the nature and severity of the disabling condition. Each case is determined on an individual basis; it is the responsibility of the applicant to supply documentation of the alleged disabling condition.
XI. ASSET/COMPASS ADMISSIONS SCORES
Minimum scores for entry into programs are established to meet or exceed state requirements and are reviewed and published annually.
In accordance with the Statement of Equal Opportunity, SWGTC will not discriminate in Assessment.
The Director of Admissions has the overall responsibility for ensuring this procedure is implemented.
Revised: 08-06-96; 12-11-96; 04-21-97; 12-05-00; 02-01-05; 02-07-06; 07-24-07; 06-30-09; 07-13-10; 02-14-12; 06-14-12 01-15-13