Placement Examinations

Composition Placement Examination

Certain entering freshmen, including those who receive a score lower than 550 on the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing sections of the SAT or an ACT English score below 24, are required to take the Composition Placement Examination (CPE). Based on the results of the CPE, students will be given clearance to enroll in the appropriate writing course, either WRIT 120 or WRIT 150. Entering freshmen who are required to take the CPE will be notified during the admissions process.

Placement Tests

Placement Tests are required for the following courses:

Mathematics – MATH 108, 117, 118, 125

Chemistry – CHEM 050, 102, 105a.

Quantitative Reasoning – GE-F (see below for important information)

Math, chemistry and quantitative reasoning placement tests are administered by Testing Services. The exam must be taken during the first year of enrollment for students entering as freshmen and during the first semester of enrollment for students entering as transfers.

Only students admitted to USC may take the placement tests and are required to show their USC ID upon arrival. Students who do not have their USC ID can show another form of identification, but must also show proof of enrollment. Two #2 pencils are required. Calculators are not permitted.

Foreign language placement tests are administered by the Language Center.

Placement Test Dates

Reservations are required for math, chemistry and quantitative reasoning placement tests. Contact Testing Services for test times, dates and sites at testing@usc.edu or undergrad.usc.edu/services/testing.

Foreign language placement tests are administered by the Language Center on scheduled dates throughout the academic year and during summers. Reservations are not required unless otherwise noted. Results are valid for one calendar year. Students must wait six months before retaking. For additional information concerning foreign language tests, contact the USC Language Center, THH 309, (213) 740-1188 or language@usc.edu, or visit online at language.usc.edu.

Only students admitted to USC may take these exams. USC ID or proof of admittance to USC along with a photo ID is required.