Placement Testing FAQs

Do I need to take the placement test?

Most students need to take the placement test, but there are some exceptions

Testing Waivers:

  • Students who have successfully completed (grade “C” or better) developmental work at another NC community college under the semester system OR you are transferring college level work, you may be exempt from the placement test. Our Admissions Counselors can help you answer questions about transferable courses.
  • Students may  be waived from placement testing based on their SAT/ACT scores.  See if you qualify for a SAT/ACT testing waiver.
  • Multiple Measures allows eligible students to be waived from testing based on their high school GPA and the completion of certain math courses.  Students who are waived from testing based on Multiple Measures will receive a letter stating that they have been waived from placement testing.  View Multiple Measures eligibility and criteria.

Students must submit all documentation to receive testing waivers.  Official college and high school transcripts must be submitted to the PCC Registrar’s Office for evaluation.  SAT and ACT scores must be submitted to the PCC Placement Testing Office.

When should I take the placement test?

Students should schedule their placement test ASAP upon receipt of their PCC acceptance letter. Students who wait until summer, which is Testing’s busy period, to schedule an appointment may find that all testing appointments are already booked.  This is important because students cannot register for classes or attend orientation if they have not completed placement testing, so scheduling your appointment early is crucial to a smooth registration.

View more information about the placement test, including testing hours.

What if I live out-of-town?

If it is not convenient for you to take the placement test in Greenville, NC, you may contact a community college in your area to see if you can take the placement test with their testing center.  Students who are not taking the placement test at another NC community college will need to fill out paperwork prior to testing. For more information about taking the placement test at another school please visit the Distance Learning portion of the PCC Placement Testing Website.

What is the test like?

To view more information about the placement test click on the link below that applies to you:

Curriculum Programs – Associate Degree, College Diploma or College Certificate

Continuing Education Programs – BLET, Cosmetology, Nurse Aide, and/or Phlebotomy.

What if I have taken the SAT or ACT?

We offer waivers for the placement test based on your SAT or ACT scores. You must provide proof of the score(s) to either an Admissions Counselor or the Testing Coordinator. A waiver will exempt you from one or both parts of the placement test and you will be able to start in the college level course(s) required for your curriculum. Cut scores for waivers are as follows:

Pre-March 2016:
Writing 500
Critical Reading 500
Math 500
March 2016 and Future:
Evidence-Based Reading and Writing 480
Mathematics 530
English 18
Reading 22
Math 22
Minimum scores are subject to change without notice.


What if I have a disability or require special accommodations?

If you have a condition that may warrant special testing accommodations (for example: extended time, large print, a reader, or interpreter) that includes but is not limited to visual, hearing, physical impairments, and learning disabilities, you should contact the PCC Accessibility Services Office at (252) 493-7285. They will work with you to determine the best accommodations for you. All testing accommodations must be approved by the PCC Accessibility Services Office prior to test administration; accommodations can not be granted without approval from the PCC Accessibility Services Office.

What if I took the placement test at another school?

If you took the NC-DAP placement test at another North Carolina community college, you may have your test scores sent to PCC Placement Testing.  Students should contact the institution that administered their test to find out how to have a copy of their scores sent to PCC Placement Testing.  Official scores may be faxed, mailed, or hand delivered (in a sealed envelope) to PCC Placement Testing.

Scan Scores – pcctesting@my.pittcc.edu
ATTN: Placement Testing
Fax: 252-321-4592

Mail Scores –
Placement Testing
Pitt Community College
PO Drawer 7007
Greenville, NC 27835

Hand Deliver –
PCC Main Campus: Warren Building, room 2402

Should I study for the test?

Students are encouraged to review study resources before taking the placement test. Not taking the placement test seriously can cause a student to be misplaced into developmental courses that they may not need. Starting in courses below your skill level can cost a student time, money, and delay a student’s graduation date by up to a year or more.  It is important that students start with the courses that meet their needs; reviewing study resources before testing will ensure student’s are placed according to their current skill level and facilitate student success.

Students should refresh skills that they may have forgotten, but not teach themselves new skills.  Students who place higher than their current skill level may struggle in their upper level course work, which could cause them to fail/repeat a course, costing them time, money and frustration.

How should I prepare for the placement test and What score do I need to be placed in the class I want?

To obtain study resources and to view the minimum required scores for each class, click on the link below that applies to you:

Curriculum Programs – Associate Degree, College Diploma or College Certificate

Continuing Education Programs – BLET, Cosmetology,  Nurse Aide, and/or Phlebotomy.

What if I experience test anxiety?

For most people, test taking can be pretty stressful. However, some stress is good because it makes your body more alert, thus possibly enhancing your performance. But, too much stress can be debilitating and can cause a prepared person to freeze during the test, resulting in decreased concentration and difficulty understanding the test questions. There are ways to minimize stress during the test. Keep the following things in mind:

  • This test is not a measure of your intelligence; it is merely a tool used to place you in the courses where you will be the most successful.
  • Get plenty of rest the night before. Trying to concentrate when you are tired is very difficult and can add to anxiety.
  • Eat a good breakfast or lunch. If you are hungry when you are testing, you can become distracted with thoughts of food. Eating junk food before the test is not a good idea.
  • Arrive a little before you plan to test and collect your thoughts. Practice deep, slow breathing to slow your heart rate.
  • Do not drink too much coffee or caffeinated drinks. The caffeine can add to your jitters.
  • Replace negative thoughts with positive ones. Do not get caught up in the thought that you’re not going to do well. Think of testing successes you have had in the past.
  • Relax and keep things in perspective. This test will not determine your entire future!

What if I fail the test?

The placement test is not a pass or fail test. The test is used to place you into classes that will challenge you as a student while allowing you to be successful. This test will not deny your admission to PCC, however your scores may impact your graduation date, so it is important that you take the time to prepare for the test.

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