Faculty Resources

Testing and Course Placement for New Students

Soon after their arrival on campus in September, Hendrix freshmen take placement examinations. These examinations help determine a student's level of achievement in certain fields. Students should not be placed in subjects which may be too advanced, nor should students repeat material they have previously learned. The tests are as follows:

English Usage. The English Department recommends placement of students in English courses on the basis of their high school record and their scores on board tests (ACT) or (SAT).

Foreign Language. Students who have had two years or more of French, German, or Spanish in high school must take a written placement evaluation, offered to all new students during Orientation.

Mathematics. The Mathematics Department recommends placement of students in math courses on the basis of their high school record and their scores on the American College Test (ACT) or the Scholastic aptitude Test (SAT). Students majoring in chemistry, physics, or, of course, mathematics or computer science, must take calculus, while some majors require at least one precalculus course.

Music. A music theory test is given to incoming prospective music majors. Students may "test out" of Music 201 Basic Musicianship Skills. Credit for this course is granted upon the student’s successful completion of Music 202 Introduction to Diatonic Harmony. Credits can be validated by completing the next advanced music theory course.

English Course Placement for International Students

All entering, degree-seeking international students are given an ENGL placement test by Hendrix College. The purpose of the test is to evaluate international students’ English language skills in reading, listening, speaking, and writing. It is designed and administered by the English Evaluation and Placement Committee. An international standardized test such as TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) does not substitute.

Based on its review of appropriate materials, the English Evaluation and Placement Committee will:

  • Place the student ESOL 118 English for Academic Purposes I, or
  • Place the student in ESOL 119 English for Academic Purposes II, or
  • Recommend the student for ENGL 110 Introduction to Academic Writing, or
  • Recommend the student for a 200-level English literature course.

The Committee also reviews students’ English skills at the end of their semester in ESOL 118 or 119 to determine proper placement or recommendation, and a student may be required to repeat a course if insufficient progress has been made. ESOL 118 and 119 are taught for credit/no credit, and students receive a grade of “NC” (no credit) until placed or recommended for a higher course.

Students are enrolled in ESOL 118 or 119 the semester they receive such placement. Students shall not enroll in ESOL 119 ENGL 210, or an ENGL/ENGF 200-level literature course before they have received recommendation from the committee. A recommendation of ENGL 110 or a recommendation of ENGL/ENGF 200-level literature class, however, is a recommendation only. Each advisee should know that the recommendation is based on review of the student’s writing by Hendrix professors and is considered to be in his or her best int4rests relative to academic success at Hendrix.

Students currently enrolled in ESOL 118 or ESOL 119 have the option of requesting extra time (time and a half) on tests in their other classes. Students wishing to receive this help must contact their professors and Academic Success at least three days before the test on which they would like extra time.

English Placement and the College’s Graduation Requirement in Writing

Neither ESOL 118 nor ESOL 119 may be used to meet the College’s Level I writing requirement (W1). Upon recommendation for ENGL 110, ENGL 210 or an ENGL/ENGF 200-level literature course, an international student may proceed to complete the W1 requirement by completing (and passing) any one of the following: ENGL 110 (W1), ENGL 210 (W1), Writing Exam (W1), and ELG or ENGF 200-level course coded LS W1.