Placement at NMC

What is my Placement?

Placement is a tool used by NMC to check the academic skill level of incoming students and place them into the correct level courses. NMC requires multiple placement measures — we'll place you using GPA and test scores into the appropriate course.

  • Placement is important— it determines where you start in your math and English coursework.
  • Placing into more advanced courses can save you time and money by allowing you to skip over beginner courses.
  • If you placed into Pre-College level math, we encourage you to take the Accuplacer Next Gen placement exam to try to improve your placement.
  • Of course, if you need a refresher on math or English skills, your placement will ensure that you do not start in a course that puts you in over your head.

You can check your math and English placement by logging in to NMC Self-Service here. Select “Student Records” and then “View Your Academic Transcript”. If you are eligible for English Placement, you will find a link on your study transcript to complete the Writing Survey.

Sample transcript:

Placement Transcript

Where do I take the English placement test?

If you are eligible for English Placement, you will find a link on your study transcript to complete the Writing Survey.

Where do I take the Math placement test?

Placement testing is currently being held on campus.You do not need to make an appointment to take placement on campus but you can do so in My Success if you prefer. You will only need to bring a photo ID as we will provide a calculator and scrap paper.

If you are unable to test in the center, you can request a test session with Zoom. To do this, you will need:

  • An appointment (not a current NMC student? Call 231-995-2134 to schedule)
  • A computer with audio capabilities, a webcam and high speed internet
  • Please make sure your equipment is functional by visiting the Zoom Test Meeting

How can I prepare for the math placement?

  • Studying or brushing up on your skills prior to testing can save you valuable time and money in college.
  • The Accuplacer Next Gen Math test will start with 20 questions in quantitative reasoning, algebra and statistics. Depending on how well you do, you will either move to arithmetic or college algebra. That second part will also be 20 questions.
  • Prepare for your math placement using the free Accuplacer Study App.
    • Create a free account.
    • Review starting with the Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra and Statistics section. You may need to do some review of the Arithmetic section depending on your comfort level.
  • NMC offers a college math prep workshop. For more information, check out the Student Success page.
  • If you would like to study more broadly, we recommend looking at using the pre-algebra and algebra modules in Khan Academy.

What do my scores mean for placement?

What math and English classes might I take at NMC?

The math and/or English you take with NMC depends on your program of study/major. For most degree programs at NMC, you will need to complete either MTH111 Intermediate Algebra or MTH120 Mathematical Explorations.

How is Placement determined?



We can determine your placement in English with any of the following:

  1. High School GPA (with three semesters completed)
  2. ACT scores of 18+ in English and 19+ in Reading
  3. SAT scores of 480+ in Evidence-Based Reading and Writing
  4. GED score of 175+
  5. Transfer credits in English from another school, or a CLEP or AP exam

You may also request a writing sample and survey to determine your placement if you:

  • Have graduated from high school with a 3.0 or higher
  • Graduated from high school more than 3 years ago (with any GPA)
  • Are not a dual enrolled student or early college student

Email to request.

Placement will be determined using the following measures:

  1. High School GPA (for high school graduates within last 5 years)


  1. ACT scores* of 21+ in math (within 5 years) -OR-
  2. SAT scores** of 530+ in math (within 5 years) -OR-
  3. Accuplacer Placement test -OR-
  4. Transfer credits in math from another school, or a CLEP or AP exam

** 2016 SAT or later

* ACT scores and high school GPA must be less than five (5) years old.

Questions? Contact the Testing Center Specialist at (231) 995-1228.


On your testing day:

  1. Bring Photo ID (drivers license, passport, student ID are all accepted)
  2. Calculators are not allowed unless you have a prescribed accommodation. A calculator will pop up on your screen for questions that it is allowed.
  3. We provide scrap paper in the testing room
  4. Plan on 90 minutes to complete the test


Our Testing Center is located at 1701 E. Front Street, Traverse City, MI, in the Osterlin Building (#3 on the Front Street Campus Map).

Osterlin testing Center Hours

Spring Semester Hours: January 13–May 3

  • Sunday: 3–8 p.m.
  • Monday and Thursday: 8 a.m.–8 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday: 8 a.m.–5 p.m.
  • Saturday: Closed

SUMMER Hours: May 4–August 26

  • Sunday: Closed
  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday: 8 a.m.–5 p.m.
  • Thursday: 8 a.m.–8 p.m.
  • Saturday: Closed