Registration & Student Services Building

Assessment Center

Assessment & Placement Testing Overview

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What is Assessment?



Waiving the Assessment


Out-of-Area &

Online Placement Testing

Placement Test


 Placement Test



Why is Assessment Important? What is a Placement Test?

  • Assessments are designed to help students succeed in college by accurately placing students into the English, English as a Second Language (ESL), Math, Chemistry and Biology course sequences.
  • There is no pass or fail; the purpose of assessment through placement testing is to measure the student's knowledge and understanding of an academic subject.
    • English: Accuplacer English (Reading Comprehension & Sentence Skills) and Local Writing Sample
    • ESL: CELSA Test and Local Writing Sample
    • Math: Local Calculus Readiness Test and Accuplacer Math Tests (College Level, Elementary Algebra & Arithmetic)
    • Local Chemistry 1A/Biology 6A Exam
    • Local Biology 40A Exam
  • De Anza may consider high school coursework alongside placement test results for assessment.

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Who Needs an Assessment?

Assessment is required for any student interested in starting the English, ESL and Math course sequences at De Anza College.

In general, this includes students that wish to...
  • Transfer;
  • Earn a degree or certificate;
  • Enroll in any English (or ESL) or Math course; or
  • Are undecided about their educational goals.

The Assessment Center also offers Chemistry 1A/Biology 6A and Biology 40A Exams for those students that plan to enroll directly into Chemistry 1A, Biology 6A or Biology 40A.

Look up the course you wish to enroll in the Course Catalog and review the course's prerequisite.

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How can an Assessment Requirement be Waived?

In general, all new students with no college-level course credit should take the English or ESL and math assessments.

Students who have earned college-level coursework in English, Math, Chemistry and Biology can submit the below documentation along with the Evaluations Department's Prerequisite Clearance Form

Students with college level course credit are exempt from taking the placement test.

Questions about Prerequisite Clearance? Contact the Evaluations Department directly at 408-864-5300 or email

Students that have taken the below placement tests at other colleges, can request to transfer the scores to De Anza:

  • English: Accuplacer Classic Test
  • ESL: CELSA Test, Version I
  • Math: Accuplacer Classic Test
  • Chemistry & Biology: Foothill College's Chemistry Test

Simply complete the Request for Assessment Score Transfer Form (fillable PDF) along with your assessment results attached and email to

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Placement Testing Information for Out-of-the-Area & Online Students

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How to Prepare for Your Placement Testing Appointment

  1. Submit your unofficial high school transcript to the Assessment Center - Highly Recommended! for recent graduates using the High School Transcript Assessment for Placement Form (fillable PDF).
  2. Review our Frequently Asked Questions.
  3. Study for your tests by reviewing the Sample Questions.
  4. Make an Appointment at least three (3) weeks before your registration date.
  5. On the day of your testing appointment...
    1. Arrive 10-15 minutes early to the Registration & Student Services Building, RSS146 (Entrance is located outside of the RSS Building, facing Stevens Creek Blvd.);
    2. Have a valid photo ID and know De Anza Student ID Number; and
    3. Bring a few pencils.

Assessment Department Building: Registration & Student Services
Room: RSS 144
Phone: 408.864.8717

Last Updated: 11/22/17