English Challenge Test

Please visit the Placement and Testing Services web site for Challenge Test registration instructions and other information.


If your placement on the COMPASS test is borderline, your test results sheet will tell you so and will advise you to take the English  Challenge Test. The Challenge Test requires you to read a short article  and write an essay in response to a question about the article. If you  take the Challenge Test, it is possible that you will receive a higher placement.

NOTE:  you may take this test ONLY if you have already taken the COMPASS test.  Student must have placement of at least 072 to be eligible to take the Challenge Test.

⇒ If you HAVE NOT yet read about our  Placement requirements, you should do so before you read the rest of this page.

Common Questions About the English Challenge Test

⇒ What are my chances of receiving higher placement?

GOOD, if you are able to read at the appropriate level. Experience has shown us that there is a relationship between reading and writing ability. To take English 092 or 093 successfully, you should read at the 089 level or above. To succeed in Engl& 101, you should read at the 106 level or above.

⇒ I took the assessment test several quarters ago. Could my reading have improved?

YES. If you received your reading placement more than two quarters ago, you may need to retake the reading test, especially if you’ve successfully completed any social science, business, or humanities classes. Contact the Testing Services office at (425) 564-2243, or telephone the Arts & Humanities Division at (425) 564-2341 and ask for the English Assessment Coordinator.

⇒ In what situations should I take the challenge test?

The English department recommends taking the Challenge Test in the following situations:

  • If your scores on the COMPASS test fall into a “Borderline” category, the Assessment Office will recommend the Challenge Test.
  • If you have passed the equivalent of Engl& 101 at a non-accredited college or university, you may take this test for placement into English 201 or 235. However, you must first take the assessment test and have your transcript evaluated (B125) before signing up for the test.
  • If you have passed a three-quarter-credit English 101, you may take this test for placement into English 201, 235, or 271. However, you must have your transcript evaluated (B125) before registering for the test.
  • SPECIAL ACCOMMODATION: If you need special testing accommodation, please call (425) 564-2243 for information.

⇒ What are the English Challenge Test requirements?

You must:

  • First take the COMPASS test.
  • Online registration only.
  • Bring a picture ID to the test session.
  • Check Degree Audit for your test results.
  • NOTE: Dictionary is allowed

Register for the Challenge Test.

⇒ May I write the essay on a computer? May I take more than an hour and a half?

All challenge test essays are done on computers. Each test has a limit of 30 students. Accommodated testing for individuals who have disabilities is available upon request/approval. For further information call 425-564-2243.

⇒ If I receive a placement higher than ENGL& 101 on the Challenge test, may I receive credit for ENGL& 101?

NO. The Challenge Test adjusts placement but does not provide credit toward a degree.

Back to Placement

Last Updated July 27, 2020