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Success is in the Details. College Readiness Testing Programs in the High Schools. Innovations 2009 Conference – Reno, NV March 16, 2009. Presenters. Kathie Montognese Director of Testing Services Hennepin Technical College Kay Lambert Director of Testing Services (Retired)

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success is in the details

Success is in the Details

College Readiness

Testing Programs in the

High Schools

Innovations 2009 Conference – Reno, NV

March 16, 2009


Kathie Montognese

Director of Testing Services

Hennepin Technical College

Kay Lambert

Director of Testing Services (Retired)

El Paso Community College

Q 1: How do you put a giraffe into a refrigerator?

Correct Answer: Open the refrigerator, put in the giraffe, and close the door.

This question tests whether you tend to do simple things in an overly complicated way.

Q 2: How do you put an elephant into a refrigerator?

Correct Answer: Open the refrigerator, take out the giraffe, put in the elephant and close the door.

This question tests your ability to think through the repercussions of your previous actions.

Q 3: The Lion King is hosting an animal conference. All the animals attend except one. Which animal does not attend?

Correct Answer: The Elephant. The elephant is in the refrigerator. You just put him in there.

This question tests your memory.

Q 4: There is a river you must cross but it is used by crocodiles and you do not have a boat. How do you manage it?

Correct Answer: You jump into the river and swim across. Haven’t you been listening? All the crocodiles are attending the animal conference.

This question tests whether you learn quickly from your past experiences.


Q 5. Mary's father has five daughters:

1. Nana, 2. Nene, 3. Nini, 4. Nono.What is the name of the fifth daughter?

If you answered Nunu – you were wrong!Correct Answer: Her name is Mary.

This question tests your ability to see what is right in front of you!

some details about minnesota state colleges universities mnscu
Some Details About Minnesota State Colleges & Universities (MnSCU)
  • Formed in 1995 by Minnesota State Legislature
  • Consolidated three systems: community colleges, technical colleges, state universities
  • 25 two-year colleges, 7 state universities (54 campus sites)
  • 5th largest public higher education system

in the U.S.

some details about el paso community college district epcc
Some Details About El Paso Community College District (EPCC)
  • Established in 1969; doors opened 1971
  • 25,454 enrolled - Spring 2009
  • 5 campuses throughout the District
  • 1 campus on Ft. Bliss military installation
  • One of the fastest growing community colleges in TX
  • #1 in associates degrees awarded to Hispanics
program goals for success
Program Goals for Success
  • Establish an effective HS to college collaboration
  • Promote early awareness of college programs and requirements (especially for those who may not have considered college as an option)
  • Provide HS students with information about their current academic skills (reading, writing and math)
  • Encourage students to take HS courses that will prepare them for college
success really is in the details
Success Really is in the Details
  • Identify HS to be targeted in your outreach programs
  • Meet with superintendents, principals, and counselors
  • Outline goals and objectives of your programs
  • Gain their support
  • Identify students (10th, 11th, 12 grades)
details about testing in hs
Details (About Testing in HS)
  • Who will administer the tests (HS or college staff)?
  • Who pays for test costs (student, HS, college)?
  • What information will you give to students/parents?
  • When will you test (dates, times)?
  • Where will you test (HS, on campus, other locations)?
  • How will students be notified of test arrangements?
  • Who will provide/discuss test results with students?
  • Who will provide post test intervention follow up?
steps to improve course placements for mnscu institutions
Steps To Improve Course Placements For MnSCU Institutions
  • Selected a single instrument: ACCUPLACER
  • Set common cut scores for placement in introductory level college courses in writing, mathematics, and courses with a reading prerequisite
  • Implemented common cut scores for students beginning Fall Semester 2008
  • Developed upload process for test scoresand background questions
further refinements
Further Refinements
  • Evaluate the first year data for validity of the scores (2009-2010)
  • Possible use of the Writeplacer or Ready or Not Writing Program to evaluate a student who appeals the placement decision
  • Expand testing in the high schools and set guidelines
why is it important for us to work together to determine college readiness
Why is it important for us to work together to determine college readiness?
  • Taking ACCUPLACER while still attending High School helps students know where their skill levels are in relation to what they need to meet their future educational goals
  • Encourages students to continue to develop skills required for college success
  • Helps students stay focused and more prepared when entering post-secondary education
hennepin technical college college readiness testing program
Hennepin Technical College College Readiness Testing Program
  • TOUR: Hennepin Technical College for career exploration “What programs are available to me?”
  • TEST: Take ACCUPLACER Placement Test at HS, proctored by college testing staff
  • TALK: Receive individualized test interpretation with HTC counselors/testing staff at HS, Parent evenings
  • TARGET: Target area for improvement if needed, sign up for A+dvancer
  • Admission Representatives are available to give follow-up presentations, i.e., financial aid, application, program information
  • Partnering HS and College Faculty
  • Developing a tracking system


really is in the



This graph is attached to every student’s test scores as a visual tool to help explain test results in one on one meeting with advisor.


We complete this form for every student and it is kept in their HS file to help with course selection for future planning.

epcc accuplacer details
  • Began limited use of ACCUPLACER CPT (1997)
  • ACCUPLACER Online introduced (1999)
  • ACCUPLACER Online was one of four THECB approved alternative tests (2001)
  • ACCU Online offered immediate scoring of essays
  • ACCUPLACER became sole test of choice (2003)
  • Expanded use to College Readiness Initiative where HS became ACCU test sites (2006 -07)
  • University of Texas at El Paso also uses


epcc pathways from hs to college
EPCC Pathways from HS to College
  • El Paso Area College Readiness Initiative (2006)
  • Dual Credit Programs (2001)
  • Early College High Schools
  • Early Admissions options
college readiness initiative
College Readiness Initiative

ACCU orientation (two weeks prior to test date)

Joint admissions application (prior to test date)

ACCUPLACER testing (in junior or senior year)

Interpretation of test results

Interventions for those testing in developmental areas

ACCUPLACER retesting in areas needed

ISD transfers scores to secure server at EPCC

CRI research activities


accuplacer i3 online
  • When the College Board first introduced ACCUPLACER Online (1999) it was unmatched by any other online testing program.
  • The ACCUPLACER New Platform (2007) took enhancements to an entirely new level in response to users’ needs.
  • ACCUPLACER i3 Platform (2009)
accuplacer what s new details
ACCUPLACER® “What’s New” Details
  • New Vendor (Pearson)
  • New Platform (i3)
  • Updated Item Banks
  • Integrated Computer Skills Placement (CSP)
  • WritePlacer® Scoring Rubric Updated
  • New WritePlacer Prompts
  • New WritePlacer ESL Prompts
  • New COMPANION™ Forms
  • New Diagnostic Tests to be developed (o/a 2010)
  • I3 Transition happening now (Feb – Jun 2009)
accuplacer i3 general features
ACCUPLACER i3 – General Features
  • Robust platform engineering
  • Updated look and feel
  • Intuitive user interface
  • Compatible with Windows Vista and Firefox
  • Over 100 system updates recommended by users
  • No training or certification required
  • Enhanced system security
  • Consistent sorting of lists/reports
i3 details that facilitate testing in hs
i3 Details that Facilitate Testing in HS
  • Student friendly, adaptive tests
  • Easy to set up, control and manage Sites/Users
  • Easy to create Test Branching Profiles
  • Easy to create Placement Rules
  • Easy to create Custom Messages
  • Easy test administration
  • Broad variety of Reporting options
for more information about our hs testing programs
For More Information About Our HS Testing Programs

Kathie Montognese

Hennepin Technical College

Ph: (952) 995-1545


Carolyn Buntyn

Director of Testing Services

El Paso Community College

Ph: (915) 526-6367


Kay Lambert

Ph: (915) 526-6367