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English Placement Policy

The South Dakota Board of Regents established a standardized placement process to ensure that entering students are placed into the English course most appropriate for their ability and background.  English placement is first determined using the ACT English or the 11th Grade English Language Arts/Literacy Smarter Balance scores that are no more than 5 years old.  If you do not have current ACT or Smarter Balance scores, your placement is in pre-general education courses.  The pre-general education English courses are at the self-support tuition rate and do not meet SGR Goal # 1 (Written Communication) requirements.

Furthermore, the Board of Regents requires that students who do not meet the college readiness benchmark score of 18 on the ACT English subtest or score 2583 or greater on the Smarter Balance exam to take pre-general education courses in English to be adequately prepared for English 101.  

Placement in pre-general education courses may be challenged by taking the ACCUPLACER Next GEN examination.  There is an $20 charge to register for the challenge exam. You can study for the ACCUPLACER exam at ACCUPLACER study app.

PlacementACTNext GEN ACCUPLACERSmarter Balance

Classic ACCUPLACER
(Administered until 1/28/19)

English 032 Writing II1-17200 - 2620-2582Sentence Skills 53-85
English 101 Composition I18-36263 +2583 +Sentence Skills 86-120

Students interested in obtaining Prior Learning Credit for English 101 may consider the CLEP College Composition Modular Exam. If interested in Prior Learning Credit for English 101 & 201 consider the CLEP College Composition with Essay exam.  For more information on CLEP, click here.

Register for an ACCUPLACER or CLEP Exam

English Placement for International Students

All international students must have a TOEFL score for admission to SDSU. Beginning Fall 2014, all international non-native English speaking undergraduate students entering SDSU will have the opportunity to take the ACCUPLACER Exam for placement into the appropriate English writing courses designed for the non-native English speaker emphasizing skills needed for success in ENGL 101.

Course PlacementACT
English Score
Next GEN ACCUPLACER
Writing Score
SAT 16
ERW scores
Classic ACCUPLACER Scores
(Administered until 1/28/19)
COMPASS ScoresSAT Scores
English 0131-13200 - 236280 - 4000-521-390-340
English 03914-17237 - 262410-49053-8539-73360-440
English 10118+263+500+86-12074-100450+

ACT COMPASS was discontinued January 15, 2016. Students with a valid COMPASS may use the score to establish placement within the Regental for up to five years following the date of testing.