New Student Assessment


Ridgewater is dedicated to student success. That means treating students as individuals, with individual needs. Because all students have varying strengths and weaknesses, all Ridgewater College students are required to take the New Student Assessment. The assessment results will provide you and your academic advisor with important information about your skills in reading, writing and mathematics in order to guide you in selecting courses most suited to your needs.  ​
After you apply and are accepted to Ridgewater, one of your next steps is to take the New Student Assessment before you register for classes. The assessment includes sections in reading, writing and math. Students may be exempt from all or portions of the assessment if they meet any of the criteria listed in our policy found here. If you have taken the ACT test and have obtained the following minimum scores, please forward your ACT results to the Admissions Office.  

  • Reading - a reading subject area test score of 21 or higher
  • Writing - an English subject area​ test score of 18 or higher
  • Mathematics - a mathematics area test score of 22 or higher

Call 1-800-722-1151 to schedule your assessment exam.  Please remember that a photo ID is required when you come in for your testing session.

Frequently Asked Questions

How will the assessment scores be used?  

While you should try to do your best on this assessment, please keep in mind that there is no passing or failing score. The results will NOT be used for admission, and the scores will NOT affect your course grades. Instead, your scores WILL help you and your advisor choose the courses that are best suited to your present skills.

Once you have completed the assessment, Ridgewater College will communicate your scores to you. You also will receive recommendations of courses which match your skills and needs. Scores and recommendations will be shared with your advisor who will help you interpret them and help you select the proper courses with the goal of placing you in courses that are correct for you.

How long does the assessment take?

Ridgewater College administers the College Board Accuplacer which is endorsed by the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system. This assessment is administered using a computer and is not timed. However, you should plan on approximately 1½ hours to complete all sections. Please allow yourself plenty of time to take the assessment so you don’t feel rushed. Remember this is your first step in achieving your educational goals!

Can special arrangements be made for students with disabilities?

Yes. If you have a disability that will prevent you from taking the tests under standard conditions, you may request special accommodations. Requests for accommodations should be made directly to the college in advance of testing. The Admissions Office will be able to inform you of the office or person to contact regarding these arrangements. There is no charge for these accommodations.

How should I prepare for the assessment?

Practice resources are available at:​

Assessment Regulations 

Notebooks, dictionaries, calculators or other papers of any kind (except for scrap paper provided by the assessment administrator for use with the math tests) are not allowed in the room. Anyone who gives or receives help during the assessment, or uses notes or books of any kind, will not be permitted to continue. Following the assessment, no materials or notes may be removed from the room. Your college may cancel any score if there is reason to question the validity.


Your scores and the information you provide when taking the assessment will be used by the college for counseling and placement purposes. It may also be used by Ridgewater  and the College Board or Educational Testing Service for research purposes. Your information will not be used for any other reason without your permission. If the data is used for research purposes, special precautions will be taken to ensure that your identity is kept confidential. Any data received by ETS will be held for no more than three years. If you have any questions about the confidentiality of the data you have provided or about your test socres, you should see the college's assessment administrator.


Ridgewater College is an equal opportunity employer and educator.