All students entering a program of study which requires math or English courses must meet placement requirements for these courses. Placement may be determined by high school transcripts and GPA, SAT and/or ACT scores, and GED scores; all of which are valid for five years. Additionally, students who are enrolled at another higher education institution or four-year college may submit their college transcripts for placement determination. Students who do not satisfy the placement requirements based upon these multiple measures must take the Virginia Placement Test (VPT).
Students must submit their applications for admission to New River before taking the placement tests. Placement testing must be completed prior to meeting with an academic adviser to establish a course schedule.
Students can retake the placement test one time within 12 months of the initial attempt of the VPT. Placement test scores are valid for five years.
New students are exempt from taking the placement tests if they have received appropriate scores within the past five years on one or a combination of the following assessments. (The scores shown are the minimum needed for exemption.)
|Hight School GPA*||3.0 or above||3.0 or above and completion of an Algebra Intensive Course above Algebra II**|
(Evidence-Based Reading and Writing)
(Subject Area Tests English and Reading)
(Subject Area Test Math)
*High school GPA may only be used as a placement for students who received or will receive an Advanced Studies or Standard Diploma.
Students with a high school GPA of 2.7-2.9, SAT/ACT scores below the scores noted above, or a GED math score of 155-164 may also be exempt based upon their selected program of study. Please see an advisor for further evaluation.
High school transcripts and GPA exemptions do not apply to high school dual enrolled students.
**Algebra Intensive Courses above Algebra II include Trigonometry, Advanced Algebra and Trig, Math Analysis, Algebra III, Pre-Calculus, and Calculus.
The VPT is a computerized test composed of two separate assessments, English and math. Each test will take between 2 and 3 hours to complete. Students needing to complete both tests should consider taking them on separate days to avoid fatigue. Individual testing times depend on how long it takes the test taker to answer the questions and how consistently he or she answers the questions.
Placement tests are not graded per se; they are simply used to place students into appropriate courses. However, students should put their best effort into these tests to demonstrate a readiness to take college level courses and to avoid being placed into courses that may not be needed.
When students prepare to take the placement tests, the importance of reviewing material that has previously been studied cannot be over emphasized. The placement test is not an admissions test or an aptitude test. The test measures how well students demonstrate skills and proficiencies which will indicate the courses they are prepared to take. Not reviewing before taking the placement test could place students into courses that are below their actual skill level. This can delay a student's progress by one or more semesters, causing disruption in course sequencing and costing extra time and money.
Students are highly encouraged to start the review process early to provide enough time to practice and to build confidence in taking the placement test. This will ensure the most accurate course placement for each student.
Students looking for further assistance in preparing to take the VPT can sign up for individual tutoring support in Academic Assistance.
Students can take a diagnostic practice test in VPT English, math, or both. Following the practice test, students are able to view their scores and receive feedback on which areas they can benefit from further review.
Click here for further instructions on taking the VPT practice test.
You can also download a printable set of practice questions for the VPT Mathematics Test (PDF) here.
Details about the individual units can be found on the math department webpage.
Placement tests are given at our testing centers. Placement tests are not timed but generally will take between 2 and 3 hours. Please NOTE: You must start a placement test at least 3 hours prior to closing.
No appointment is necessary to take a placement test. Students will need a picture ID and their student identification number (A student ID number will be generated after completing the NRCC online application process). There is no fee for placement testing.
*Note: Please call ahead and check as normal testing hours may change when classes are not in regular session.