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Frequently asked questions about assessment services

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How do I book an appointment?

To book an assessment at the New Westminster campus or David Lam campus in Coquitlam (you must have applied to the College by submitting an application either on-line or in-person, paid your application fee, and have been assigned a student number), please call the Registrar's Office at 604-527-5478 or TTY 604-527-5317. For self-serve on-line assessment registration, please click on-line assessment registration.

Please book early in the semester to ensure you are able to meet any deadlines as sessions often fill to capacity during peak periods.

How long is the assessment test?

Please see individual assessment testing information sheets.

Is there a cost to do the assessments?

No. There is no cost for Douglas College students (the cost is included in your application and registration fee).

When can I rewrite my assessment?

You may take an assessment for admission to courses and/or programs a maximum of two times within a two-year period. For most standardized tests, there is a four month waiting period before you can do a retest.

If you write the Computer-based English Assessment and are directed to upgrading, you must wait until after the "last day to drop a course or completely withdraw from the College" in the following semester before rewriting the assessment. The purpose of this policy is to encourage you to take the opportunity to upgrade your skills before retaking the assessment.

You may attempt the Computer-based English Assessment a maximum of twice in two years. However, if you first take the ELLA or English Upgrading assessment, without having attempted the Computer-based English Assessment, you will be eligible to take the Computer-based English Assessment only once. The ELLA or English Upgrading Assessment counts as the first attempt, and the Douglas College Online English Assessment counts as the second. If you believe extenuating circumstances exist you may contact the Registrar to request special consideration or exemption to this policy.

What do I bring?

Please bring photo identification (driver's licence, passport or student card), your Douglas College student number and a pen and pencil. An English language dictionary in book form only is permitted for the Computer-based English Assessment. (Electronic or translation dictionaries, or thesaurus/dictionaries or synonym/dictionaries are not permitted. No dictionaries with built in sentence structure, grammar, punctuation usage, or writing styles. Please check the front, middle and back to ensure these are not included, as they will not be permitted).

Calculators are not permitted in Math Assessments with the exception of Math 11 Exemption, and the Computer-based Math Assessments (a scientific calculator is permitted, but a graphing calculator is not).

When do I get my assessment test results?

Mathematics and Typing Assessments will be marked on the same day and results will be given to you after completion of the assessment. The Computer-based English Assessment will usually be marked the same day and results will be given to you right after completion of the assessment. In some instances your results may take up to 24 hours.

How long before course registration do I need to do my assessments?

You will need assessment results before you are eligible to register for courses requiring assessment prerequisite substitutions. We recommend you do your assessment testing as soon as you have submitted an application to the College and receive a student number. Students applying into a closed enrolment program need to wait to receive a letter from the Admissions Officer indicating which assessments are required. Please book early in order to meet any deadlines.

Do you have a practice test?

We do not have a practice test for the Computer-based English Assessment, but there is information on all testing available and some samples of the Reading Comprehension and Essay components. Please click here for information PDF's.

The (Precalculus placement) Math Assessment does have a practice test. Please click here for information PDF's.

What shall I do to prepare?

Review the information sheets which explain the format and content of the assessment and provides suggestions regarding which textbooks will be most helpful. Please click here for information PDF's.

Can I bring a calculator to the test?

Calculators are not permitted for any of the Math Assessments with the exception of the Math 11 Exemption and Computer-based Math Assessment (only a Scientific Calculator is permitted. No Graphing Calculators).

Can I bring a dictionary for English Language Learning and Acquisition Assessment?

No. Dictionaries are not allowed.

Can I bring a dictionary for the Computer-based English Assessment?

Yes. An English language dictionary in book form only is permitted for the Computer-based English Assessment. (Electronic or translation dictionaries, or thesaurus/dictionaries or synonym/dictionaries are not permitted. No dictionaries with built in sentence structure, grammar, punctuation usage, or writing styles. Please check the front, middle and back to ensure these are not included, as they will not be permitted).

What if something comes up and I can't make it?

As soon as you know you can't make the assessment test appointment, call the Registrar's Office at 604 527 5478 or TTY 604 527 5317. You will need to re-book your appointment as soon as possible. Failure to cancel your assessment with 24 (business) hours notice may result in the assessment being counted toward your four (4) month waiting period prior to being retested. Please note: some closed programs have different criteria for retesting.

What if I'm a bit late?

All of the assessments are standardized timed tests. Please ensure you are early or on time as late arrivals are not permitted into the lab/testing room under any circumstances once the door is closed and the assessment has started. Late arrivals for Individualized Assessments may not be accommodated.

How do I reschedule an assessment?

Phone 604 527 5478 or TTY 604 527 5317 24 (business) hours prior to the assessment to reschedule an appointment at either the New Westminster or Coquitlam (David Lam) Campus. You can also use the self-serve on-line assessment registration by clicking on-line assessment registration.

What if I don't know if I need an assessment test or not?

Check to see if you have met the prerequisites (listed in the Douglas College Catalogue) for your course/program. You can do this by reviewing your high school transcript. If you have applied to a closed enrolment program, the Admissions Officer will send you a letter informing you of all testing that will be required. You can also check with an Academic Advisor by phoning 604 527 5478.

Can I do a retest?

For most tests there is a four (4) month waiting period before you can do a retest. Some closed programs have different criteria for retesting. Students will be limited to two opportunities to take a particular assessment. If unsuccessful, there is a two (2) year waiting period before a student can re-book the test. Any student who writes the Computer-based English Assessment (DCOE) and is directed to upgrading must wait until after the "last day to drop a course or completely withdraw from the College" in the following semester before rewriting the assessment. The purpose of this policy is to encourage students to take the opportunity to upgrade their skills before retaking the assessment. Students may attempt the DCOE a maximum of twice in two years. However, a student who first takes the EASL or DVST [English Upgrading] assessment counts as the first attempt, and the DCOE counts as the second.

How long is the "shelf life" of assessment test results?

Writing assessment results are good for four years. Standardized assessment test results are good for two years.