Frequently Asked Questions

Who do I contact about placement tests?

To sign up for placement tests, submit our form. You’ll receive an email within a week with information about scheduling remote or in person placement tests. For questions or information about placement testing, please contact Testing Services at (773) 442-5293 or

Do I have to take the placement tests?

All incoming freshmen need to take math placement tests. Entering students with a high school GPA below 3.25 need to take the Reading and Writing placement tests. All international students need to take the English (Reading and Writing) tests. Transfer students needing to take a math or English course at Northeastern will take the tests. Before taking a placement test, reach out to an Academic Advisor or review our Guidelines and Procedures to learn more about ACT, SAT, GPA or other alternate measures you may be able to use for placement. 

How do I sign up for placement tests?

To sign up for placement tests, submit our form. You’ll receive an email within a week with information about scheduling remote or in person placement tests. 

How do I reschedule or cancel my test?

If you need to change your in person placement tests for any reason, click on the link in your confirmation email or contact Testing Services at to cancel at least two days in advance of the test date.

What do I need to bring for the test?

Please bring your Northeastern student ID number and a photo ID (driver’s license, state ID, high school ID, etc.). Students without a photo ID will not be allowed to test.

Can I use a calculator or dictionary during the test?

No calculators or any kind of study aids are allowed during testing. There is a calculator icon available for select math problems.

How long will the test take?

For the math test, the average duration is about two hours. However, all tests are untimed, so it varies widely from student to student. 

Do I need to be there at the stated time? Can I come later?

It’s highly recommended to arrive no later than the stated time. If you are going to be late, please contact Testing Services at

I didn’t sign up for the test; can I still come to take the test?

It is recommended that you register ahead of time to secure your place at testing. 

Can I use my AP or CLEP credits for the math and English courses instead of taking the placement test?

Yes, you can. Learn more about AP and CLEP at Northeastern.

Does the test cost anything?

The test is offered free to all incoming students who are taking it for the first time at Northeastern.

Can I retake the test?

Students can retake the math test once. There is a retake fee of $10 per retake. Please see our Guidelines and Procedures for retaking the placement test(s).

How will I get my results?

Results will appear on screen at the conclusion of the test in the form of a report. You may take a screen shot or print the report. For more information, visit our Interpreting Your Test Scores page.

Are there practice tests available?

Yes. Visit our Practice Placement Tests page for study resources.

What is the next step after taking the placement test?

You will meet with an advisor to plan out and register for classes.

Incoming first-year and transfer students will need to sign up for Orientation.

Incoming students should also check out our Summer Bridge Programs.

What are the options for students with special needs or a learning disability?

Northeastern’s Student Disability Services (SDS) provides assistance for students who request accommodations. Please contact for more information.

Can I park my car in one of Northeastern’s parking lots on the day of the on campus test?

Yes, you can park your car on campus at any parking lot designated Blue Zone or Green Zone. You will need to purchase a one-day $5 parking permit on/for the day of the test. Visit the Parking Office for more information.

Can I bring my family, friend or a child to the on campus test?

No children or guests can accompany you in the room while you test; however, they can wait in the waiting area only. Children must be accompanied by an adult.