New Student Advising And Placement - Garrett College

For the most up-to-date information on Garrett College’s Fall 2020 Return to Campus Plan, visit https://www.garrettcollege.edu/fall-2020.

Garrett College McHenry campus offices will be open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Offices will be closed for service from 12- 1 p.m. for lunch. Visitors are strongly encouraged to schedule appointments (either virtual or in-person). When on campus, all visitors must follow the College’s health-and-safety measures. Please note the outreach centers (NOC, SOC, CTTC) will have variable hours - please call ahead prior to visiting these locations.

The most up-to-date information on Garrett College's response to COVID-19, can be found online at novel coronavirus/COVID-19 resource page.

Note: the Daily Health Self-Assessment form is located here.

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New Student Advising & Placement Testing

Advisors at Garrett College understand that academic advising is the key component to helping students achieve their educational goals. New students, transfer students, and students returning to Garrett College after an extended break must attend a New Student Advising appointment to complete the final steps to becoming enrolled; including Placement Testing, if required (see details below).

During New Student Advising, advisors are available to assist students regarding:

  • Accuplacer/placement assessment interpretation
  • Degree or major selection
  • Course selection and sequence
  • Academic support resources
  • Career and transfer guidance
  • Graduation requirements

All New Student Advising appointments, unless noted, include, retrieval of student username and password, general welcome information, placement testing (if required), advising and course registration, parent information, and visits to the college business office and financial aid. Tours of our residence halls are also available.

Students requiring placement testing may wish to take advantage of low-cost our refresher options. See detailed information in drop-down below.

Students are encouraged to bring a parent/guardian with them to their New Student Advising appointment. Students requiring placement testing and advising should plan to be on-campus for approximately three hours.

All new and transfer students must schedule a New Student Advising appointment through the Admissions Office by emailing admissions@garrettcollege.edu.

Students returning to Garrett College following an extended break should also contact the Admissions Office by calling 301-387-3044. Students returning following a break of fewer than four semesters may contact the Advising & Academic Success Center directly at 866-554-2773, extension 3715 to inquire about returning.

Upcoming Dates

Please email admissions@garrettcollege.edu to schedule your appointment. There are limited seats available during each session, so scheduling is mandatory.

      Limited New Student Advising appointments available, call to schedule.

      Novel Coronavirus/COVID-19 Update: Placement testing procedures have changed. See details in the dropdown menus below.

      Placement testing is an assessment process used to determine each student’s most appropriate math and English course upon entering the college. Garrett College utilizes ACCUPLACER Next Generation placement testing platform, a computer-delivered assessment suite, to determine proper course placement. Students requiring testing (see next area for exemptions) will take 2-3 untimed individual tests during the testing session: Writing, Quantitative Reasoning Algebra and Statistics (QAS), and possibly Reading. There are between 20-25 multiple-choice questions on each test, each question adapted to the student’s demonstrated skill level from the previous question.

      Students with lower scores on the placement test may be required to take as many as two developmental math classes and one developmental English/Reading class before taking some college classes. While developmental courses help acquire the skills needed to succeed academically, they do not count toward graduation or transfer and cost time and money. For these reasons, it is critical that students take these tests seriously and try their hardest.

      ACT/SAT

      Certain ACT or SAT scores may exempt students from placement testing, as illustrated below.

      If you are a transfer student seeking exemption from placement, official college transcripts must be on file in the Garrett College Office of Admissions BEFORE ADVISING AND REGISTRATION can take place.

      ACT/SAT Score   Course Placement
      ACT English of 21 or higher or SAT Critical Reading of 480 and higher English and reading placement tests not required English 101 with no additional reading requirement
      ACT math of 21 or higher or SAT math of 530 and higher Math placement test not required MAT105 or MAT210 Students seeking a higher math placement must take ACCUPLACER to determine exact course placement.

      High School GPA

      High School Graduates who have achieved a cumulative high school GPA of 2.8 or above (on 4.0 scale) are also exempt from placement testing and are permitted to enroll in gateway college-level courses (ENG 101 and MAT 105 or 210) immediately upon entry. In addition, students that have successfully completed Calculus or Pre-calculus with a B or higher in high school may enroll in the associated course immediately upon entry. Please let an admissions counselor know if you qualify for this and have your official high school transcript sent to Garrett College right away.


      If you are a transfer student seeking exemption from placement, official college transcripts must be on file in the Garrett College Office of Admissions BEFORE ADVISING AND REGISTRATION can take place.

      Those exempt from placement should call an admissions counselor at 301-387-3044 to confirm exemption and schedule an advising and registration session.

      Novel Coronavirus/COVID-19 Update: On-campus and standard remote placement testing are not available at this time. See temporary adjustments to testing procedures below. #

      Placement Testing via Zoom at Home

      As a temporary solution to the Novel Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic, Accuplacer placement testing is available to accepted new students remotely using Zoom video conferencing technology beginning April 8. For placement testing with Zoom:

      • Student must have access to a laptop or desktop computer
      • Computer must have video and audio capabilities
      • Testing must take place in a private area with limited interruptions
      • Testing will be monitored by a Garrett College test proctor through Zoom video conference technology
      • Student must present photo ID prior to testing
      • Student must schedule an appointment in advance

      Remote testing appointments are available Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday of each week. Contact Nick Pratt (nick.pratt@garrettcollege.edu) in the Advising & Academic Success Center to schedule.

      On-campus and standard remote placement testing (testing at another approved testing site) will resume when the college campus reopens, at which time remote testing via Zoom will be suspended.

      Students that have taken the Accuplacer placement test at another institution may submit those scores for evaluation and possible placement. In order for scores to be considered, the following must apply:

      • Placement Test Score Transfer Form and Accuplacer Score Report must be faxed to the Advising & Academic Success Center (fax number 301-387-3189) directly from the school at which the student tested
      • Test(s) taken must be part of the Accuplacer Next Generation platform; Accuplacer Classic scores will not be accepted
      • At a minimum, student must have completed the Writing and Quantitative Reasoning Algebra and Statistics (QAS) assessments
      • Scores must be less than 2 years old

      For questions, contact the Advising & Academic Success Center by phone at 866-554-2773, extension 3715 or email at testingcenter@garrettcollege.edu.

      It is highly recommended that students prepare in advance for placement. Review with a friend, relative, former teacher, or visit one of the many free online resources available:

      • Accuplacer FREE Web-Based Study App - The app will allow users to review and take practice tests in the areas of reading comprehension, sentence skills, elementary algebra, arithmetic, and college level math.

        Visit Accuplacer Site or view a PDF of Sample Questions

      • Garrett College’s Placement Testing LibGuide contains detailed information on the Accuplacer Next Generation Placement Test, test taking tips, sample questions, and simulator tests.
      • Common Core State Standards App – A great reference for students; quickly find standards by subject. App includes Math standards K-12 and Language Arts standards K-12, with the Corresponding College and Career Readiness Standards. Available for both Apple and Android devices. FREE

        Download from the iTunes Store
        Download from the Android Market

      • Khan Academy is a free, not-for-profit organization, providing world-class education to anyone, anywhere. Resources include practice exercises, instructional videos, and a personalized learning dashboard.

      Refresher courses are designed to help new students improve math, writing, and reading skills and course placements before the student’s first semester in college.

      Live Instructions (Online) Refresher Courses

      Low-cost Refresher Courses with live synchronous instruction are offered to students remotely using Zoom. Courses provide five hours of content delivered by a Garrett College professor. Refresher Courses take place between 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at a cost of $15 per course.

      New students may take a refresher course to brush-up on basic skills before taking the placement test. The instruction provided will also benefit new students that have already taken the placement test and hope to improve their scores and course placements by taking the test again.

      Summer Refresher Course Dates

      Math Refresher Writing/Reading
      Wed. July 15 Thurs. July 16
      Mon. July 27 Fri. July 24
      Mon. August 17 Tues. August 18

      CLICK HERE to Register for Live Instruction (Online) Refresher Courses

      The link will take you to the Garrett College Continuing Education & Workforce Development site, where you will register online. Steps to register:

      1. Click green course link to expand/view all dates for a course offering
      2. Click green section link for the course/date you wish to enroll
      3. Add course to your cart; use back button to return to full course list and add another course, if needed
      4. Click shopping cart in upper right corner to checkout
      5. Create an account
      6. Proceed through all steps to register and pay online

      Self-Paced (Online) Refresher Courses

      Self-paced, online, free Refresher Courses are offered to students as well. These courses provide the content in a convenient and flexible online format ideal for students that are unable to attend a live instruction Refresher Course. Students may access and complete a Self-Paced (online) Refresher Course from any device with internet connectivity. The courses provide an overview of math and writing/reading with detailed examples and videos to help brush up skills and prepare for placement testing.


      Once a student has completed an Online Refresher Course, he or she may contact the Advising & Academic Success Center by phone at 866-554-2773, extension 3715 or email at testingcenter@garrettcollege.edu to schedule placement testing.

      Students that are not satisfied with placement testing results on the first attempt may consider re-testing. Re-testing is only permitted if the student is able to demonstrate that he or she has completed a method of academic intervention following the first test attempt. The easiest methods of intervention are:

      • Face-to-face Refresher Course (re-testing included with the course)
      • Online Refresher Course (re-testing scheduled with AASC following completion of the online course)

      Other interventions (self-study, personal tutor, other web-based resource) will be examined on a case-by-case basis to determine re-testing eligibility. Students are not permitted to re-test without any form of intervention.