Mathematics Placement

Multiple-choice items in each of the five mathematics placement areas test the following:

  • basic skills—performing a sequence of basic operations
  • application—applying sequences of basic operations to novel settings or in complex ways
  • analysis—demonstrating conceptual understanding of principles and relationships in mathematical operations

Students are permitted to use approved calculators when completing the ACT Compass® mathematics placement or diagnostic tests. An online calculator is available for those students who wish to access it via Microsoft Windows. At the discretion of the institution where ACT Compass is being administered, students also may use their own calculators as long as they meet the calculator-use guidelines specified by ACT.

View a small sample of nonsecure test items for:

In addition to the five mathematics placement tests, ACT Compass also offers 15 mathematics diagnostic tests: seven in pre-algebra and eight in algebra.