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New Student Placement Testing

Welcome to CBU as a new student! Now that you’ve been admitted, your next step is to schedule your placement tests. These tests are designed to place you in the most appropriate college level courses. Testing must be completed prior to attending Summer Orientation. The dates fill quickly so please be sure to register and complete your tests as soon as possible!

Placement Testing dates for Spring 2020 New Students (freshmen and transfers)

Students can take up to two placement tests per session. Placement testing takes place in the mornings. After you register, you will receive your testing schedule through your CBU email. If you are unable to attend any of these dates, please contact Academic Services at

Activate Your CBU Active Directory Credentials
In addition to your acceptance letter, you received instructions via email for activating your Active Directory Credentials (email). You’ll need an active your Active Directory Credentials to take the placement tests.

Determine Which Tests You Need to Complete
Most incoming freshmen admitted to CBU are required to complete placement tests. Your major and your ACT/SAT test scores will determine which tests you are required to take. You must view your Placement Profile in BannerWeb to determine which tests are recommended for you.

Schedule Your Test Date
You have a number of options for your testing dates. While we only offer placement testing on CBU’s campus, accommodations will be made for students residing outside of Memphis and surrounding areas. New freshmen must wait until they are admitted to schedule their placement tests.

Once you have been accepted to CBU as an incoming student and paid your deposit you can sign up for your placement tests. You will need your CBU ID number, your CBU email address, and your intended major.

Tests Offered 

Math Placement

CBU uses the ALEKS Assessment to enhance the placement of all students in their first math course. The ALEKS Assessment is offered by the ALEKS corporation, an assessment tool which uses artificial intelligence to discover students’ strengths and weaknesses in mathematics. The assessment is a 30 question open format test that does not use multiple choice questions. The test takes anywhere from 90 minutes to 3 hours to complete.

  1. Initial test at home (practice)
  2. Proctored test at CBU (official test used for student placement)
  3. Work through learning modules
  4. 2 optional practice tests
  5. Proctored test at CBU (official test used to enhance student placement)

Once the student completes the test, he will have up to six months to complete the learning modules.

Students who use ALEKS will be charged a $25.00 fee on their tuition bill.

Chemistry Placement

The Chemistry Placement Test consists of 60 multiple choice questions that are designed to test your readiness to undertake a college-level chemistry course. Questions cover high school mathematics, including content from a typical high school second-year algebra class, and material that is covered in a typical high school first-year chemistry course. Based on the scores obtained on this test and the math placement, students will be placed in either CHEM 101, Introduction to College Chemistry, or CHEM 113/113L, Principles of Chemistry I with laboratory.

Students are allowed a non-programmable calculator for the test. 

French/Spanish Placement

French/Spanish elementary and intermediate courses at CBU serve to introduce you to the basics of the French/Spanish language and develop your writing, reading, and conversation skills in the language. This grammar and writing placement test is used to make sure you are placed in the appropriate course to address your individual language needs and to enable your success. The placement test is used to assess your knowledge of basic grammar (conjugation, agreement, parts of speech) and your writing skills (applied grammar and vocabulary). You may place out of FREN 101, 102, and 201 or SPAN 101, 102, or 201 with this test. If you place out of SPAN 201 or FREN 201 you will then schedule a Challenge Exam to receive 3 hours of credit for FREN 202 or SPAN 202. Each test is 30 minutes but normally will not take the entire time. ;

English Placement

Writing courses at CBU serve to prepare you for the wide range of writing you will be expected to do in college and beyond. This writing placement test is used to make sure you are placed in the appropriate course to address your individual writing needs and to enable your success. The placement test is used to assess your control over focus, purpose, content depth, structure, reading skills, language, and mechanics in your writing.

The English Placement Test will take 1 hour to complete. 

Preparing for your Tests
You can view the testing policies and procedures for each test. The ALEKS test has a practice test that should be completed prior to taking the first proctored test. 

Frequently Asked Questions.
Answers to common questions can be found here.