English Placement Tests can affect the rest of your college career by determining if you are ready for a college-level English course. The test is comprised of three sections: English usage, sentence correction and reading comprehension. Students have 90 minutes to complete the test, allowing for 30 seconds per question, which is not enough time for most students. However, you can study for the test ad prepare yourself for the questions and time limits.
Practice Speed Reading
Many students do not have enough time to complete the English Placement Test because they do not read fast enough. One of the best ways you can prepare for the tests is to read every day for an least an hour. See how many words you can read in that hour and try to top your speed every time. The trick is to read faster while still retaining the information. You can also pick up books on speed reading, such as The Evelyn Wood Seven-Day Speed Reading and Learning Program by Stanley Frank.
Study Grammar and Punctuation
The English usage and sentence correction sections of the English Placement Test ask questions about verb, pronoun, diction, modifier and sentence composition problems. The best way to study for this section is to review your high school grammar textbooks. Complete any exercise questions your book has to offer and check your answers. If you are confused about a particular concept, such as verb tense agreement, then focus your efforts on that area. You may also consider getting a supplemental study guide or workbook, such as the "Fundamentals of English Grammar Workbook."
Take Practice Tests
You can easily access practice tests for the English Placement Test on most college websites for free. Take at least three practice tests before your real test, spacing them out a week or a few days. Make sure to carefully time yourself and to take each practice test in one sitting. Act like you are taking the real thing. After each test, grade it and give yourself a score. If you find you keep missing questions in a particular area, return to your English textbook or study guides to help resolve your confusion.
Ask for Help
While you are preparing for the English Placement Test, if you find yourself confused about any topics, ask for help. Schedule a one-on-one with your English teacher to walk you through some of the concepts you’re having trouble with, or ask a parent to help you. You may even form a study group with friends to help each other and share resources, such as practice tests or guide books. Don’t hesitate to ask for help from teachers, family or friends.
Ashley Walton holds a master's degree in English and has taught various courses at Brigham Young University, including rhetoric in new media and transatlantic literature. She has worked as an online copywriter for the last five years, and has eight years of copy editing experience.