Regional Placement Testing
Frequently Asked Questions
How should I register for the Regional Testing Program?
Registration for Regional Testing is done online at: http://www.testing.wisc.edu. This registration program begins February 1, 2012. You will see what sites are open and get immediate confirmation that can be printed on the spot. No confirmation letters will be mailed to you. You will receive an email confirming your test date and site.
How do I pick a date for testing so it doesn't conflict with school functions such as sporting events, band, choir or other social events?
Check with your coaches, teachers or other high school staff to be sure you know the dates for these events. If there is any possibility that you will be involved, please leave those dates open and do not choose them for testing
What if I want to change or cancel my paper/pencil test date?
Do not call the Center for Placement Testing or any campuses to change or cancel your test date. When you register, you will need to include an email address and verify your registration to continue. This email will include a registration code which you will need to very carefully enter to complete the registration process. To change or cancel your registration, use the link in your email and once again enter your registration code. This will allow you to change to a different site and/or date or to cancel your registration. If you no longer have this email, please call (608) 262-5863 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance. However, changing can be difficult as popular sites fill quickly and you cannot change to a site once the registration deadline for that date has passed.You will not need this registration code when you come to the test site on the day of testing.
How do I find out the directions to the testing site?
A list of directions to the various testing sites is located on the world wide web at: http://www.testing.wisc.edu under the heading of the Regional Placement Testing Program.
What is the schedule on the day of testing?
(All times are approximate)
Seating, orientation and Math testing 8:00 ‑ 10:00 a.m.
Break 10:00 ‑ 10:10 a.m.
English testing 10:10 ‑ 11:50 a.m.
Break 11:50 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Dismissal of those not taking a foreign language test 12:00 ‑ 1:00 p.m.
followed by foreign language testing
Important Note: If you are only taking the English and/or a foreign language placement test, please contact the campus site where you are testing for instructions on a reporting time.
How will I receive the results of my tests?
Interpretation of test scores is unique to each UW campus. You will receive your placement test scores and what they mean when you come to campus for orientation in the summer or fall. Test scores will not be sent from the Center and cannot be given over the phone.
I've been accepted to more than one UW System school or I may change my mind about which campus I am attending. Do I need to take placement tests for each of these campuses?
No. All UW System institutions use the UW Placement Tests and all campuses will receive a copy of your scores. Therefore, you only need to take the tests once and whichever campus you attend will have your scores, regardless of the campus you indicated on your answer sheet. The scores are sent to the testing office at each campus.
Who should I contact if I have any questions regarding placement testing at a specific campus?
Follow this Link for a List of Campus Contacts
What if I can't find a date listed that works for me?
You will either need to try to find a CBT by appointment option or contact the campus you are planning to attend for other possible options.
Does it matter whether I take the test in the paper or computer based format?
No... the choice is yours based on your preference of exam format, location, cost and convenience.
Are the computer based tests different than the paper version?
The questions are the same, they are presented in the same order and the timing is the same. The format of the questions may be slightly different as required for display on a computer screen, but we have done our best to make them appear as similar as possible. You will be allowed to bring your own non-graphing calculator regardless of whether you take the test on paper or on a computer, but the computer based version will also offer an on-screen scientific calculator for use during the math exam.
Are the results different?
No, scores will be reported to campuses in the same way for paper and computer based tests.
Will I see my results immediately if I take the tests on computer?
No. After your exams are completed, they will be transmitted to the Center for Placement Testing and to the campus you will be attending. Each campus has its own policy about how and when to communicate the results back to the students. The results will be reported the same way regardless of the exam format chosen.
What steps are required if I choose to test on my own laptop?
If you select one of the options that has you using your own laptop, you will be asked to register with our CBT vendor, where you will be provided with instructions to download their software and the exams. You must install this software some time before your exam date on the same computer you will be using to take the exams. A sample exam will be provided so you can be sure the software is correctly installed. On the day of the exam you will bring your laptop and its power cable to your scheduled test location and a proctor will enter an access code to unlock your exams. After all your exams have been completed, you will need to upload the files so that your scores can be reported to the Center for Placement Testing and the campus you will be attending. Technical support will be available to help you with all stages of this process. Please note that this process requires that you have access to an internet connection to download the software before the exam date, and again after the exams are completed to upload your results. An internet connection will not be available at your exam location, and is not allowed during the exams.
What software will I be downloading?
The exam delivery software is written and provided by our CBT vendor, ExamSoft, Worldwide. A more detailed description of how it works is provided here (link.) At the time of registration, you will be provided with detailed installation instructions, technical support and sample exams for you to try ahead of time so you can be confident that things will go smoothly on exam day. Please note, the sample exams from ExamSoft will test the software functionality only. They do not contain any subject material from the actual placement exams. If you are looking for sample questions related to the exam content, please see our website at: Contents of the Placement Tests.
What are the minimum specs for my laptop?
The software is supported on windows and mac os.
- CPU = 2 GHz Pentium III or Industry Equivalent
- RAM = 2 GB
- Hard Drive = 1 GB of free space
- Operating System = English 32-bit Versions of Windows XP, 32-bit and 64-bit Versions of Windows Vista and Windows 7
- SofTest may not be used in a virtual operating systems
- Software = Internet Explorer 7.0 or later
- Internet connection for SofTest Installation, Exam Download and Upload
- Screen Resolution must be 1024x768 or higher
- Administrator level account permissions
A native Mac version of SofTest is now available. When you attempt to download SofTest, the native Mac version will appear, if it is available to you. In order to use SofTest on your Apple Macbook or Macbook Pro natively, you must have
- CPU = Intel processor
- RAM = 2 GB
- Hard Drive = 1 GB of free disk space
- Operating System = MAC OS X 10.5.8, 10.6, 10.7 (Leopard, Snow Leopard, Lion)
- SofTest may not be used in a virtual operating systems
- Software = Internet browser. Internet connection for SofTest installations, Exam Download and Upload
- Administrator account
What steps are required if I choose to test in a computer lab facility?
If you schedule an appointment at an ACT Center within the United States, a computer will be provided to you and the software and exams will be downloaded by the proctor before you arrive. A similar process may be followed if you schedule an appointment (for a date other than the fixed regional testing dates) at a computer lab on a UW campus. Note, some UW Campus testing centers will require you to use your own laptop. The type of computer used where you are testing is determined at the time you are scheduling your appointment.
What steps are required if I want to test outside of the United States?
If I register for the computer based test, what is the cancellation policy?
The ExamSoft software license is nonrefundable. We understand that things come up, so ExamSoft has made it easy to help you change the date, time, and channel with at least 48 hours notice, and subject to availability. Click the login button at the top of the page and select one of the options for the changes you would like to make.
Who should I contact if I have any technical support questions regarding computer-based testing?
The ExamSoft Worldwide technical support number is 866-429-8889.