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English and Math Placement for New Students

Selecting the Appropriate English and Math Courses:

Students must have one of the following to place into English and Math courses:

  • ACT® score
  • SAT® score
  • Completed pre-requisite course with a grade of C- or better
  • Write Class score
  • ACCUPLACER® score

If you don’t have an ACT® or SAT® exam score to use for placement into Math, Boise State offers the ACCUPLACER® exam. Exams can be completed at Testing Services, Simplot/Micron Advising and Success Hub,  Room 213E Call 208.426.2762 for testing hours. Each exam costs $20 and you will be required to show photo ID in order to take an exam. Exams for Math take approximately 45 minutes to an hour to complete.

English Placement

In order to successfully complete the English Composition requirements, you must successfully complete ENGL 101 and ENGL 102 with a grade of C- or higher. Students with appropriate ACT®/SAT®/AP scores may be eligible to receive credit for one or both.

ENGL 101 WaivedSatisfactory score to place into ENGL 102 from
“The Write Class” assessment tool.
ENGL 101 CreditAP Language and Composition score of 3 or higher
ENGL 101 and 102 Credit Satisfactory score from “The Write Class” assessment tool ; AP Language and Composition score of 5; ACT English score of 31 or higher; SAT Critical Reading score 700-800
*Students need to be aware that on-campus research has found no correlation between standardized test scores and grades in English 101 or 102. The University Learning Outcomes emphasize writing, inquiry, and critical thinking, and should students choose to place into a higher course based on a test score, they will most likely be missing key experiences needed for later coursework.

Course Descriptions for English

ENGL 101P  INTRODUCTION TO COLLEGE WRITING AND WRITING STUDIO (3-0-4)  Click here for information about this improved introductory English course.

ENGL 101 ENGLISH COMPOSITION (3-0-3) Introduction to critical reading and to writing processes, including invention, revision, and editing. Emphasis on writing thoughtful explorations of readings, observation, ideas, and experiences; developing the author’s voice and inventiveness; editing for style and conventions of standard usage.

ENGL 102 ENGLISH COMPOSITION (3-0-3) An inquiry-based course that continues work with critical reading and writing processes and provides experience with methods and genres of researched writing. Students will initiate research projects, gather information from a range of sources, and demonstrate they can write about that information purposefully, using appropriate documentation.

 Math Placement

ACT®/SAT®/ACCUPLACER® test scores are for placement only.  All students seeking a degree must complete 3-5 credits in mathematics; the placement tests do not waive this requirement.

Scores on the mathematics portion of the ACT® or SAT® may be used for placement, but if in doubt you should take the ACCUPLACER® exam. The table below gives placement cutoffs for both standard and percentile scores. You may take the indicated course if either your standard score or your percentile is high enough. You may be exempt from the placement exam if you have taken an appropriate prerequisite course.

The developmental mathematics courses MATH 15, Arithmetic Review and MATH 25, Elementary Algebra, do not require a placement exam, but it is recommended.

Prior to selecting a math course, check the course prerequisites and the degree requirements for your major.

ACT ScoreSAT ScoreAccuplacer ScoreClass Indicated
0-170-4290-243 (QAS)MATH 15 or MATH 25
18430244 (QAS)MATH 108, MATH 123
23540256 (QAS)CS 111, MATH 143, MATH 147, MATH 157, MATH 254
27620254 (AAF)MATH 144, MATH 160, MATH 187
29+650+268 (AAF)CS 117 MATH 170
To retake a course in which you received a D, F, or W, you must re-qualify via either a placement exam for the current semester or completing a pre-requisite course (with a C- or better). Neither old placement exams nor ACT/SAT scores may be used to re-qualify for repeat courses.

Do you have skills and experience speaking French, German, or Spanish?

If yes, you are able to take a placement test to get into a higher level course and maybe even get credit for the lower classes you test out of.  Click here for  more information.