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Iowa Lakes Community College
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Placement Testing

Placement Testing

Which tests are required for students?

Iowa Lakes Community College requires assessment scores for all students. These assessments place students into appropriate academic courses.

Tests that are currently accepted include the Accuplacer Classic exams (reading comprehension, sentence skills, elementary algebra or college math), as well as ACT and SAT assessments.

How long are placement tests valid?

Assessments must have been taken within two-years of registration in order to qualify. (Exception for this is ACT scores for nursing programs.)

Can I take a placement test at Iowa Lakes Community College?

Yes. All Iowa Lakes Advising/Success Centers administer the Accuplacer assessment. Accuplacer is a comprehensive battery of tests designed to provide information about a student’s English, reading and mathematics skills. Tests are delivered over the Internet and are used extensively by many high schools and colleges. These tests are untimed, although the entire battery of exams typically takes 1 – 1.5 hours to complete.

How can I take the Accuplacer exam if I do not live near an Iowa Lakes Community College campus?

Accuplacer exams can be administered at most community colleges in the United States. To schedule a remote proctored test, please contact an Advising/Success Center instructor. A voucher will be created and emailed to you. This voucher will allow you to take the exam at a college near you.  

  • You must have applied and been accepted to Iowa Lakes in order to receive a voucher.
  • Proctor fees may apply, based on the remote testing college’s policy.

What is the cost for this exam?

Current and accepted students may take the Accuplacer exam free of charge (one time) on any Iowa Lakes campus. Students may test in the areas of reading, writing (sentence skills only) and mathematics.

If a student chooses to re-test in any of the three areas, a $10 re-test fee is required before testing (fee is required for each individual test). *It is highly recommended that students do preparatory work before re-testing.  

When will I get my results?

Test results are given immediately upon completion of the exam(s). The score report will contain a placement message, which informs the student which course(s) he or she is eligible to enroll in. 

Can I receive accommodations for the Accuplacer exam?

Yes. Students with an approved accommodation plan (with either Iowa Lakes or local high school) may request accommodations for the Accuplacer assessment. These can include a reader for the exams, Braille exams and larger print exams. *Please call in advance to schedule an appointment that requires accommodations.

How do I study for these exams?

The best way to prepare is to use the Accuplacer practice app. You can find it here:

  • After entering your email address and a password, choose the “Next Generation” version of the exam.
  • Exams to study at Iowa Lakes include: Writing and Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra & Statistics. Some programs may also require the Reading exam.
  • The “Learn as you go” option will allow you to see which answers you miss and will provide information on why the answer is incorrect.

*Please visit for more information and for study resources.

*The link below provides Accuplacer sample questions for students. 

Summary of associated fees

Description of fee Fee amount
ACCUPLACER exam for current or accepted students (first attempt in all three categories) FREE
Re-test in any of the three categories $10 per test
Request for scores to be sent to another institution $15
ACCUPLACER exam for non-Iowa Lakes students $40 (includes cost of sending scores)
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