Placement Testing


Oxford requires first-year entering students to complete placement exams for specific courses in English, Foreign Languages, Mathematics and Lab Science courses. We want to make sure our students enroll in the right level of instruction to ensure their first year on campus is as successful as possible.

Please review the following information carefully. Each placement exam has specific information on how and where to access the exam, and when it is due. Placement exams are hosted on various platforms and have their own deadlines. Please contact the Advising Support Center if you have questions.

First-Year Writing Placement

Location: Emory Essentials, Canvas
Priority Deadline: August 1, 2022

Writing is an integral part of Oxford College’s liberal arts curriculum, both as a subject of study and as part of how learning happens across courses. An important step in your journey as a writer at Oxford will be to take a First-Year Writing (FYW) course sometime within your first year.

Your FYW course will introduce you to the range of writing and inquiry you are likely to encounter during your liberal arts education, and to practices that will help you engage effectively with these in your courses. As part of this, you will engage with writing across disciplines, genres, and purposes, as well as intensive practice in academic reading, writing, and research.

Directed Self-Placement. We believe that with adequate information and guidance, you are in the best position to choose the FYW course that best meets your learning needs or whether to apply any exemption credit you may have. We will give you the “direction” (information and guidance) and you will “place” yourself. As part of this guidance, we require that all students, regardless of AP or IB credit, complete the FYW Directed-Self Placement (DSP).

The DSP consists of a reflective questionnaire about your prior reading, writing, and research experiences and provides you with our recommendation on which FYW course(s) will meet your learning needs. You will also have the option of uploading an example of your writing that best represents your academic writing. The questionnaire will be available on Canvas  starting June 1st.

You are ultimately in charge of how you will meet your FYW requirement and so we encourage you to be proactive in learning about your options and reflecting on your learning needs. In conjunction with the DSP questionnaire, we recommend that you:

  • Plan on discussing your FYW placement with your advisor, who will receive your placement recommendation, your answers to the reflective questions, and your optional writing sample.
  • Explore the Inside Oxford First-Year Writing page to read about English 185 and 186 and to learn about the themes available.
  • Attend the optional FYW placement information session during orientation, when you can meet FYW faculty.
  • Contact the Director of the Writing Program, if you have questions or need additional support: Dr. Gwendolynne Reid, reid@emory.edu.
  • For technology questions, contact ox-academictech@mscloud.emory.net or call 770-312-6766. Note: Emory students can download Microsoft Office (including MS Word) for free.

Chemistry Placement

Location: ALEKS
Priority Deadline: August 1, 2022

Chemistry 150 is the first chemistry course for science majors, pre-med, pre-nursing, and pre-health students. Students who are interested in taking Chemistry 150 during their first academic year at Oxford mustcomplete the mandatory Oxford College Chemistry Preparation online module, the OCCP. Students with chemistry AP or IB credit may take Chemistry 150, or they may exempt Chemistry 150 and start with Chemistry 202, but they still need to complete the OCCP module before their first chemistry course can be taken at Oxford.

Students interested in taking Chemistry 150 are required to complete the OCCP and earn 100% before the priority deadline of August 1st in order to be eligible to enroll for the fall semesterStudents with AP/IB credit who intend to enroll into Chemistry 202 are still required to take the ALEKS placement by August 1st, as well. Students who attempt to enroll in either Chemistry 150 or 202 without completion of the OCCP will be removed from the roster.  

Students who do not intend to take Chemistry 150 during their first academic year do not need to take the OCCP this summer. If plans change, students may complete the OCCP before the pre-registration deadline for the upcoming semester.

Accessing ALEKS

The OCCP is administered through the artificial intelligence based teaching tool called ALEKS. ALEKS is an adaptive, artificially-intelligent learning system that provides students with an individualized learning experience tailored to each student’s strengths and weaknesses.

Step 1: Register to take the OCCP on ALEKS

  1. Log in to ALEKS. https://www.aleks.com/sign_up.
  2. Click on the "SIGN UP NOW!" link located under the login box on the left of the page.
  3. Enter the Course Code: Oxford College Chemistry Preparation: HLRJD-MQCKD in the box labeled "Using ALEKS with a Class?" and click on "Continue."
  4. Verify that you are registering for the correct course and click on "Continue."
  5. On the next page you will create an account. Please provide all the information requested. Remember, your Emory student number is NOT your social security number. You must enter your seven-digit Emory student number (you can find this information on your OPUS account).
  6. After you complete your account set up you will be logged into ALEKS and can immediately begin working in the course.

Step 2: Initial Assessment

Students will be asked to complete an initial assessment to determine their knowledge level. This initial assessment is VERY important because it will determine the level a student will begin their learning modules. Key tips and reminders for the initial assessment:

  • Take the assessment at least 3 weeks before the deadline
  • Take the test carefully and honestly- ALEKS will force you to work through material you already know if you are not careful and honest in taking your assessment
  • Never click “I don’t know” unless you really have no idea how to do the problem
  • Assessment should take 60-90 minutes

Step 3: Working Through Your Pie

After you take the initial assessment, you will see a pie graph of your achievement. Look below the pie chart to see how many topics you've mastered out of the total number possible. The goal is to have 100% mastery at the time of the priority deadline. You will want to follow the onscreen directions to work in the ALEKS pie. The system will help you learn the things you need to understand so that you can earn 100% on the assessment.

Note: It is important that you try to complete the OCCP within three months – before your subscription expires. If your subscription expires you should contact ALEKS support and request a Higher Ed subscription extension.

If you have questions about the OCCP or Chemistry 150, please contact:

If you experience technical issues accessing your ALEKS account, please contact ALEKS support: (714) 619-7090

Biology Placement

Placement recommendation for Biology is determined by the Oxford College science division based on high school GPA and AP/IB scores (if submitted);there is no placement test. Biology AP or IB scores must be submitted to the college by August 1st in order for scores to be factored into the placement evaluation. An AP score of 4 or 5, or IB scores of 5, 6, 7, may be used to exempt out of the Biology 141 LECTURE only (BIOL 141). Students who choose to take the AP/IB credit for the Biology 141 Lecture will be required to take BIOLOGY 141 LAB (BIOL 141L/BIOL_OX 141L), a two credit hour lab course to complete the requirement for the Biology major or for pre-health requirements. In many cases, students with an AP score of 4 or IB score of 5 are encouraged to take both Biology 141 lecture and lab courses at Oxford (BIOL_OX 141 and BIOL_OX141L) which best prepares students for the expectations that have to be met in upper level courses. 

If you have questions, please contact Sarah Fankhauser (sarah.fankhauser@emory.edu). 

World Languages Placement

Location: Varying locations: Emory Essentials, Canvas; WebCAPE
Priority Deadline: August 1, 2022

Any student planning to take a language course in Arabic, Chinese, French, German, and/or Spanish at Oxford College is required to take the corresponding Language Placement test. Students with no prior experience can enroll in 101, entry level courses, without a placement test. Placement for studentsplanning to take Latin will be based on previous Latin courses taken. While Oxford College students are not required to complete foreign language credit for their Associate of Arts degree, foreign language is a requirement for Emory College degree completion.

Arabic (Canvas)

The Arabic Language Placement Test is intended to help determine the level of students' knowledge of the Arabic Language. The test must ONLY be taken by students with prior knowledge of Arabic--including students who are heritage Arabic speakers--who intend to enroll in an Arabic language course. How to access the test: 

  1. Log into Canvas 
  2. Click on Emory Essentials: Oxford New Student Orientation Course 
  3. Locate Arabic Exam in modules  

Chinese (Canvas)

The Chinese Language Placement Test is designed to determine the level of student's knowledge of Chinese. The test must be taken by any student who would like to take Chinese at Oxford College, regardless of prior experience. How to access the test: 

  1. Log in on Canvas 
  2. Click on "Courses" on the navigation bar on the left 
  3. Scroll down to click on “All Courses” 
  4. Then “Browse More Courses” on the upper-right corner of the page 
  5. Check “open enrollment courses only,” and then “Search” 
  6. Hover over the Chinese Placement Test, and click on “Join this Course” 

French, German, and Spanish (WebCAPE)

The French, German, and Spanish departments at Oxford College use an online assessment tool called WebCAPE to determine placement. If you are interested in taking courses in one of these languages, please follow the instructions below on how to access the assessment on WebCAPE. If you are interested in more than one language you will need to take the assessment for each language separately.

  1. Visit the TrueNorth WebCAPE Foreign Language Placement Exam website
  2. Create an account. When asked for "ID Number" please use your empID number (your Oxford-Emory 7 digit student ID number)
  3. Login with the account just created
  4. Select the language (Spanish, French, German) you wish to take.
  5. Proceed to take the pre-test survey and then the test.

Latin

Placement for those wishing to take Latin will be based on previous Latin courses taken, and the judgment of the department faculty. There is no online assessment that needs to be completed over the summer. Please contact Dr. Bayerle if you would like to discuss Latin placement at Oxford College.

Foreign Language Departmental Contacts

Mathematics Placement

Location: Emory Essentials, Canvas
Exam opens: June 1, 2022
Priority Deadline: August 1, 2022

The Mathematics and Computer Science department at Oxford College wants you to be as successful as possible in your mathematics courses. A large part of that success starts with choosing a class that is appropriate for your current level of preparation. Taking the math placement exam is required of any student that wants to take a course on the calculus track while at Oxford. Specifically, this includes courses: Math 111, 112, and some 200+ level courses.* This requirement exists so that we have the opportunity to give you well-informed advice regarding what we feel might be the best first course in mathematics for you. It should go without saying that students who might be interested in majors and programs requiring calculus (e.g., the natural sciences, economics, quantitative science, computer science, math, business, etc.) should plan to take the math placement exam.

Importantly, taking the math placement test is a requirement, but the placement recommendation that results is just that -- a recommendation. You are not bound to follow it -- although it is likely to be in your best interest to do so.

Starting on June 1st, you will be able to take the math placement exam online through Canvas. After logging into Canvas (Emory Essentials), navigate to the placement module where you will be presented with additional directions for taking the test.

If it is relevant to your situation, make sure you are aware of the credit awarded for the various AP test scores in mathematics and computer science.

Pre-medical or pre-business students should also be aware of the suggested math courses for pre-professional students.

* Note: taking the math placement exam is not required to enroll in Math 108 – Cornerstones in Mathematics, even though it prepares students for the calculus track.

If you have questions about the Math Placement please contact Paul Oser, poser3@emory.edu. If you have technical issues accessing the exam in Canvas, please contact the Advising Support Center, oxadvising@emory.edu.