See Academic Skills Center Homepage for Announcements and Closures.
"COMPASS provides measures of key skills useful for placing students into standard courses in the areas of writing, reading, and mathematics, and if needed, into English as a Second Language courses. The standard COMPASS placement measures,
mathematics,
reading, and
writing, are designed to assist institutions in placing students into appropriate collegecredit courses or developmental or preparation courses." (COMPASS Reference Manual, 2)
To learn more about this computerized test, please read through the information below:
Effective March 1, 2011, JJC students may use their unexpired ACT scores as a substitute for ACT COMPASS testing. Effective September 2, 2013, ACT scores expire 48 months from the testing date.
Please see changes below which will go into effect September 1, 2015; these changes will take effect for spring 2016 registration.
English

Effective March 1, 2015, an ACT English score of 20 will place students into ENG 101.

An ACT English score of 20 or higher will meet the ENG 020, ENG 021, ENG 098, and ENG 099 prerequisites for all courses.
Math

Effective March 1, 2015, an ACT Math score of 23
will place students into MATH 119, 123, 127, 128, and 131 provided the
geometry prerequisite has been met.

An ACT Math score of 23 or higher will meet the MATH 090, MATH 094, and MATH 098 prerequisites for all courses.

An ACT Math score of 25 will still be necessary to place into MATH 138 and 142 provided the
geometry prerequisite has been met.

A student must complete ACT COMPASS testing in order to place into a higher level math class (i.e. MATH 170).

Effective September 1, 2015, an ACT Math score of 22 will place students into MATH 119, 123, 127, 128, 131, and 138 provided the
geometry prerequisite has been met.

Effective September 1, 2015, an ACT Math score of 23 will place students into MATH 142 provided the
geometry prerequisite has been met.
An ACT Math score of 22 or higher will meet the MATH 090, MATH 094, and MATH 098 prerequisites for all courses.

A student must complete ACT COMPASS testing in order to place into a higher level math class (i.e. MATH 170).
In order to use ACT scores as a substitute for ACT COMPASS testing, ACT scores must be submitted to JJC in one of the following three ways:
 When a student registers for the ACT test, he/she must indicate that the scores be sent to Joliet Junior College.
 When a student requests that high school transcripts be forwarded to Joliet Junior College, ask that ACT scores be included with the transcript. Please note that this is not available at all schools.
 Request that an official copy from ACT be sent to the JJC Admissions Department.
Students may borrow a calculator or use their own;
nothing more advanced than a TI86 may be used for the ACT COMPASS test. Student testers also have the option of using the calculator that is built into the ACT COMPASS test. The Joliet Junior College Academic Skills Center adheres to ACT's calculator recommendations for ACT COMPASS testing.
Click here to view these recommendations.
Components of the Test
All students taking the ACT COMPASS test must first complete an "EAP Screener"; this includes a series of five questions that helps the ACT COMPASS proctor determine whether the student should be directed into ESL ACT COMPASS testing or nonESL ACT COMPASS testing. Fulltime students must complete either the entire ESL package or the entire nonESL package prior to registering for classes.
Parttime students may have to complete all or a portion of the tests depending on which courses and programs of study they wish to pursue. An explanation of which ACT COMPASS tests students are required to take is listed below within the
Individuals Required to Test section.
The full nonESL ACT COMPASS test is composed of
reading,
writing, and
math testing. The full ESL ACT COMPASS test is composed of
reading,
grammar/usage,
listening, math, and a
writing prompt (eWrite).
Geometry is an additional placement test available for those students wishing to test out of certain math courses. To better help you prepare for this test, a breakdown of the components within each of these tests is provided below.
Reading (Part of the ESL and nonESL testing)
The ACT COMPASS reading test determines whether an examinee has the reading skills necessary to succeed in a standard entrylevel college course or whether the examinee might benefit from a developmental, or remedial, reading course first. This test measures reading comprehension in terms of the tester's ability to refer and reason.
Writing (Part of the nonESL testing)
The ACT COMPASS writing test determines whether a student possesses the writing skills and knowledge needed to succeed in a typical entrylevel college composition course. This test assesses a student's abilities in the categories of usage/mechanics (punctuation, basic grammar and usage, sentence structure) and rhetorical skills (strategy, organization, style).
Grammar/Usage (Part of the ESL testing)
The ESL Grammar/Usage test assesses students' abilities to recognize and manipulate standard American English in two areas: Sentence Elements and Sentence Structure and Syntax. All items are in a multiplechoice format and the examinee selects options by clicking the computer's mouse. To answer the questions in the Grammar/Usage test, it does not matter whether the students have learned their language through the study of grammar rules or by absorbing comprehensible written and spoken input. What is important is students' control over the structures and not their knowledge of rules. It is the students' level of understanding of grammar or usage within a context that is being tested.
Listening (Part of the ESL testing)
The ESL Listening test assesses students' abilities to recognize and manipulate standard American English in the two major categories of Explicit Information (listening for explicitly stated information) and Implicit Information (listening for implicitly stated information). Listening tasks increase in difficulty along several continua across several levels of proficiency. The test uses authentic listening activities and includes information that listeners would have to comprehend in actual secondlanguage situations.
All items are in a multiplechoice format, and the examinee selects options by clicking the computer's mouse. Item types range from recognizing pictures that go with words at the lowest level to answering inferential questions about academic materials at the highest levels. A long listening passage typically includes items from a variety of item classification categories. The majority of questions at all levels are explicit, though the number of inferential questions is higher at advanced levels.
eWrite (Part of ESL testing)
The ESL eWrite is a direct measure of student writing skills. Students are asked to provide a single writing sample in response to a specific prompt. The assessment produces six scores: a single overall score that can be used for placement and the following five analytic subscores: Development, Focus, Organization, Language Use, and Mechanics.
Math (Part of the ESL and nonESL testing)
The ACT COMPASS math test is a selfadaptive test, which potentially tests students within four different levels of math including prealgebra, algebra, college algebra, and trigonometry. A student may select a starting point of prealgebra, algebra, or college algebra depending on his perceived math ability. As the student answers questions, he may move into more difficult levels of math as he answers questions correctly. Similarly, if a student answers questions incorrectly, the computerized test will begin to ask questions from a lower level of math.
PreAlgebra
 Basic operations with integers, fractions, and decimals
 Exponents, square roots, and scientific notation
 Ratios, proportions, and percentages
 Conversions between fractions and decimals
 Multiples and factors of integers
 Absolute values of numbers
 Averages (means, medians, and modes)
 Range
 Order concepts (greater/less than)
 Estimation skills and number theory
 Counting problems and simple probability
Algebra
 Elementary Algebra
 Substituting values into algebraic expressions
 Setting up equations for given situations
 Basic operations with polynomials
 Factoring of polynomials
 Solving polynomial equations by factoring
 Formula manipulation and field axioms
 Linear equations in one variable (using integers, fractions, and decimals as coefficients)
 Exponents and radicals
 Linear inequalities in one variable
 Intermediate Algebra
 Rational expressions
 Exponents and radicals
 Systems of linear equations in two variables
 Quadratic formulas
 Absolute value equations and inequalities
 Coordinate Geometry
 Linear equations in two variables
 Distance formulas in the plane
 Graphing conics (circle, parabola, etc.)
 Graphing parallel lines
 Graphing perpendicular lines
 Graphing relations in the plane
 Graphing systems of equations and rational functions
 Midpoint formula
College Algebra
 Functions and exponents
 Complex numbers
 Arithmetic and geometric sequences and series
 Factorials
 Matrices (basic operations, equations, and determinants)
 Systems of linear equations in three or more variables
 Logic and proof techniques
 Roots of polynomials
Geometry
 Triangles (perimeter, area, Pythagorean Theorem, etc.)
 Circles (perimeter, area, arcs, etc.)
 Angles (supplementary, complementary, adjacent, vertical, etc.)
 Rectangles (perimeter, area, etc.)
 Threedimensional concepts
 Hybrid (composite) shapes
 Trapezoids and parallelograms
 Logic and proof techniques
Trigonometry
 Trigonometric functions and identities
 Righttriangle trigonometry
 Trigonometric equations and inequalities
 Graphs of trigonometric functions
 Special angles (multiples of 30 and 45 degrees)
 Polar coordinates
The following math courses
require the geometry prerequisite: MATH 119, MATH 123, MATH 124, MATH 127, MATH 128, MATH 131, MATH 138, and MATH 142. Geometry scores never expire; this test may only be taken twice.
The following math courses
do not require the geometry prerequisite: MATH 137, MATH 139, MATH 150, MATH 153 and MATH 170.
GSD
Coursework
Placement into certain developmental classes will result in mandatory
General Student Development (GSD) coursework.
A student is required to take GSD 085 (College Preparation and Study Skills) or GSD 100 (College Success) if he/she places into multiple developmental courses. If a student wishes to appeal his placement into GSD 085, he or she must see the
Counseling Department.
Individuals Required to Test
Below is a chart illustrating which individuals are required to complete all or a portion of the ACT COMPASS test prior to course registration.
Description*  Reading Test Required  Writing Test Required  Math Test Required  Geometry Test Required 

New fulltime student  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes** 
JJC student who has already accumulated 12 or more credit hours but has not already completed ACT COMPASS testing  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes** 
New or existing JJC student who wishes to only take math course  No  No  Yes  Yes** 
New or existing JJC student who wishes to only take an English or foreign language course  Yes  Yes  No  No 
New or existing JJC student who wishes to only take a science course (except BIO 103: Health)  Yes  Yes  Yes  No 
Reverse Transfer student with English and math credit from another college  No  No  No  Yes** 
Reverse Transfer student with ACT COMPASS Reading, Writing, and math scores earned within the past 48 months  No  No  No  Yes** 
* Please be aware that there are several other courses and programs that require particular English and math prerequisites and/or certain ACT COMPASS placement scores. A student is strongly encouraged to look at the prerequisites for each class using the
JJC Catalog or speak directly with a
counselor or
adviser.
**Yes, if the student wishes to take a 100level transferoriented math course and
does not have a transcript showing one year of high school geometry with a "C" average or higher
Interpreting Score Report
Once a student has completed testing, he will receive a copy of his scores along with the ACT COMPASS Score Report Interpretation Guides listed below.
Receiving Score Report
Students will receive their ACT COMPASS score report immediately upon completion of testing; this report will provide the student with scores and placement messages indicating the reading, writing, and math courses for which the student is eligible to register. Likewise, the student will be provided with the interpretation guides listed above. If a student loses his original copy,
he may request that an additional score report be printed for a fee. Please be aware that the Academic Skills Center only keeps these reports for one year.
Click here to learn how to have an official copy of your score report sent to another institution.
Remote Testing Options
ACT COMPASS Remote Testing allows students to complete their ACT COMPASS testing even if they are not in close geographic proximity to their school’s testing site. This international service is ideal for two particular types of students: the Traveling JJC Student and the Local NonJJC Student.
The Traveling JJC Student – This individual wishes to be a JJC student but is temporarily not living in the Joliet, Illinois area. The student may be removed from the area because of military, family, or other reasons. If this student wishes to take the JJC ACT COMPASS test at a nonJJC location, she must call the ASC Secretary at 8152806667. Generally, this service generates a $25.00$65.00 fee collected by the testing institution. Be prepared to provide the ASC Secretary with the following information:
 Full name (First name, middle initial, and last name)
 JJC ID Number
 Date of birth
 Address, city, state, and zip code
 Email address
 Phone number with voicemail

Locate a COMPASS Internet Remote Testing Site where you would like to test.
 Indicate whether you will be a
fulltime or
parttime JJC student.
The Local NonJJC Student – This individual lives in the Joliet, Illinois area but intends to attend a college or university elsewhere. If this student's institution requires COMPASS testing and she would like to conveniently complete this testing in Joliet, she should follow the steps listed below.
 Contact your institution to see if they can set up a Remote Test to take place at Joliet Junior College; if they have questions about this, direct them to (815) 2806667 or (815) 2802220. ACT Remote testing is available at the Main Campus, Romeoville Campus, and Morris Education Center.
 Once your institution has set up this test, you will instantly receive an email outlining your next steps.
 Using this email, contact the JJC Academic Skills Center to schedule this test.
 You will be charged a $25.00 fee.
Retaking the Test
A JJC Student with JJC Student ID Number may take the ACT COMPASS test in its entirety one time for free. Effective September 2, 2013, ACT COMPASS scores will expire 48 months after the testing date. A student may test twice within a rolling 24month period if they have not already begun the sequence of courses for that subject: reading, writing, and/or math. All retests will incur the retest fee. Testing and retesting are available at Main Campus and Romeoville Campus. Once a student has passed math or English classes, the ACT COMPASS test cannot be retaken.
 Once a student has passed a JJC math course, they cannot retake the ACT COMPASS math test.
 Once a student has passed a JJC reading course, they cannot retake the ACT COMPASS reading test.
 Once a student has passed a JJC writing course, they cannot retake the ACT COMPASS writing test.
Score Expiration
Effective September 2, 2013, ACT COMPASS scores will expire 48 months after the testing date. A student may test twice within a rolling 24month period if they have not already begun the sequence of courses for that subject: reading, writing, and/or math. All retests will incur the retest fee. Please note that ACT and Asset scores also expire 48 months after the testing date. JJC always uses the highest, current score. Geometry scores never expire; this test may only be taken twice. Click here to learn more about using ACT scores as a substitute for ACT COMPASS testing.
A student may request that her scores be sent to another institution.
This process takes approximately two business days and incurs a $25.00 fee per request. This fee went into effect on July 1, 2011. Please note that official ACT COMPASS Score Reports are only maintained for one year. Scores older than twelve months may only be available on letterhead. Be sure to check with your school to make sure that is acceptable.Click here to complete the ACT COMPASS Score Request form.
Special Accommodations for ACT COMPASS Testing
All students have access to the following accommodations:
 The entire ACT COMPASS test is untimed.
 All students are provided with scratch paper and pencils.
 Students may borrow a
calculator or use their own; nothing more advanced than a TI86 may be used for the ACT COMPASS test.
 A student may request earplugs to block out noise distractions.
 A student may take the entire ACT COMPASS test at one time or may break it into multiple parts: reading, writing, and math. Please be aware that scores are not recorded until the testing session is complete.
Students with documented disabilities have the ability to work with the
Student Accommodations and Resources (StAR) Department to arrange for further accommodations including screen magnification, Braille, sign language interpreters to help with instructions, large print or audio books, scribes, and tracballs.
Click here to learn StAR Department's contact information, as well as view information about StAR's many accommodations and services.
The Asset test is a paperandpencil test used to replace the reading and writing portion of the ACT COMPASS Placement test for students with documented dyslexia (severe word perception disability). The Asset test can be read to students via a tape recorder. Documentation must be preapproved and testing is done by appointment only through StAR.
Steps to Take the Test

Apply for admission to JJC. If you are wishing to use these ACT COMPASS scores at an institution other than JJC, please look at the
Remote Testing Options.
 Determine whether you must take all or a portion of this test by looking through the
Individuals Required to Test information.
 Speak with the Student Accommodations and Resources (StAR) Department if you need
Special Accommodations.
 Prepare for the ACT COMPASS test by knowing the
Components of the Test and participating in one or more of the
ACT COMPASS Preparation options.
 Decide on which location you will complete your test:
Main Campus in Joliet, or Romeoville Campus in Romeoville.
 Arrive at the testing center with your JJC ID Number, one acceptable form of identification, and a
calculator;
if you do not have appropriate photo identification, you will not be allowed to test. There are no exceptions to this rule!
 Pay a
fee if necessary; remember that a JJC Student with a JJC Student ID Number may take the ACT COMPASS test one time for free.
 Plan to arrive at the testing center no less than 60 minutes prior to closing. Exams must be submitted when the center closes. Exams must be completed in one sitting. Earplugs are available upon request.
Click here to see other Academic Skills Center Testing Policies.
 View the
ACT COMPASS Placement Testing Directions on the computer at the testing site immediately before testing.
 Complete all or a portion of this untimed test.
 Receive your
ACT COMPASS score report immediately along with math and English
interpretation guides and learn of your course placement. Depending on your placement,
GSD coursework and developmental classes may be required.
 If you are an EAP (English for Academic Purposes) student, take scores to Office of Multicultural Student Affairs to learn next steps. Call (815) 2806709 or visit the OMSA office.

Retest for a fee if necessary.
 Continue with the
next steps of the enrollment process.
Testing at Local High Schools
Also known as
ACT COMPASS OffSite Testing, this service allows local high schools to arrange for an ACT COMPASS testing session to take place in a high school computer lab. Please contact the Academic Skills Center secretary at (815) 2806667 to learn more about this option.
Testing Fees
The amount a student is charged to take the ACT COMPASS test is dependent upon their JJC student status, whether they have completed this test before, and if they are taking this test for JJC or another school.
On Saturdays, students may only pay with cash or check.
 JJC Student with appropriate photo identification may take the ACT COMPASS test one time for free.

ACT COMPASS retest fees for JJC Students are $10.00 per test as listed below:
 Geometry Retest = $10.00
 Grammar/Usage Retest = $10.00
 Listening Retest = $10.00
 Math Retest = $10.00
 Reading Retest = $10.00
 Writing Retest = $10.00
 eWrite Retest = $10.00
 Effective September 2, 2013, ACT COMPASS scores will expire 48 months after the testing date. A student may test twice within a rolling 24month period if they have not already begun the sequence of courses for that subject: reading, writing, and/or math.
All retests will incur the retest fee.
 JJC Student with appropriate photo identification may take the ACT COMPASS test remotely for a fee determined by the testing site they choose; this is generally $25.00$95.00.
 NonJJC Student may take the ACT COMPASS test
remotely for another institution for $25.00.
 Effective July 1, 2011, students wishing to have an official copy of their ACT COMPASS Score Report sent to another institution will incur a $25.00 fee per request.
Testing Times and Locations
ACT COMPASS Testing is available at Main Campus and Romeoville Campus. No appointment is necessary and the test is untimed. The student must begin his/her test no later one hour prior to closing. On average, this test may take 1.5  3 hours to complete.
Click here to view contact information, as well as exceptions to the schedule below.
Main Campus
Directions to Main Campus
Academic Skills Center in A1138 (Campus Center)
1215 Houbolt Road
Joliet, IL 60431
Monday  7:30am  No testing will begin after 7:00pm  All testing ends at 7:50pm 
Tuesday  7:30am  No testing will begin after 7:00pm  All testing ends at 7:50pm 
Wednesday  7:30am  No testing will begin after 7:00pm  All testing ends at 7:50pm 
Thursday  7:30am  No testing will begin after 7:00pm  All testing ends at 7:50pm 
Friday (CLOSED DURING SUMMER SESSIONS)  7:30am  No testing will begin after 3:30pm  All testing ends at 4:20pm 
Saturday (CLOSED DURING SUMMER SESSIONS)  8:00am  No testing will begin after 11:00am  All testing ends at 11:50am 
Academic Skills Center in NC80 (Learning Resource Center)
1125 West Romeo Road (West 135th Street)
Romeoville, IL 60446
Monday  8:00am  No testing will begin after 7:00pm  All testing ends at 7:50pm 
Tuesday  8:00am  No testing will begin after 7:00pm  All testing ends at 7:50pm 
Wednesday  8:00am  No testing will begin after 7:00pm  All testing ends at 7:50pm 
Thursday  8:00am  No testing will begin after 7:00pm  All testing ends at 7:50pm 
Friday (CLOSED)   No testing  
Saturday (CLOSED)   No testing  
Using Scores from another Institution
If you have completed placement testing at another institution
within the past 48 months, you may be eligible to use these unexpired scores at JJC.
Please contact the Academic Skills Center at
academicskillscenter@jjc.edu. Please know that JJC only accepts ACT COMPASS scores and some ACT ESL COMPASS scores. All other nonCOMPASS scores (i.e. Accuplacer) will not be accepted. All ACT COMPASS scores from other institutions should be sent directly to the Academic Skills Center. The secretary will input all reading and writing scores; any math scores will be forwarded to the
Math Placement Specialist. All mathplacement related questions should be directed to Jim Morgan, Math Placement Specialist, at jamorgan@jjc.edu.
Please note that ACT COMPASS Placement Test scores are only recognized as official IF they are on your institution's letterhead OR if they are the original score report. Printouts from your institution's website or other institutional forms are not acceptable substitutes.
Once these scores have been submitted to the Academic Skills Center, you will be charged a
retake fee if you wish to
retest in one or more portions of the ACT COMPASS Placement Test.
Last updated on April 1, 2016.