In order to accurately assess and prepare new students for the rigors of their first semester, the University of Baltimore requires placement testing to determine accurate writing and math courses for its new students. Newly admitted first-year students with valid SAT/ACT scores should consult their admission counselor to determine if placement is required.
Placement test scores are valid for two years, in accordance with state guidelines.
Transfer students requiring placement should register for placement tests no later than their second semester at UB. Failure to do so may impact a student’s intended graduation schedule and course registration.
If placement testing accommodations are required, please send current documentation of a disability (at least two weeks in advance) to the Office of Disability and Access Services .
Placement Test Schedules and RSVP
First-Year Placement Dates and Times
All students should contact their admission counselor to verify their placement requirements. All students are required to complete the Haven and Plagiarism tutorials and placement activities prior to meeting with their First-Year Advisor.
Summer 2018 First-Year Placement Dates and Times
Saturday, May 12, 10 a.m. RSVP
Tuesday, May 22, 9 a.m. RSVP
Saturday, June 9, 10 a.m. RSVP
Monday, June 18, 9 a.m. RSVP
Thursday, June 21, 9 a.m. RSVP
Monday, July, 9 a.m. RSVP
Thursday, July 26, 9 a.m. RSVP
Monday, August 6, 9 a.m. RSVP
Thursday, August 16, 9 a.m. RSVP
Upper-Division Writing Placement Testing Schedule
RSVP is required through UB's Web calendar. To RSVP, choose the date below that you wish to sit for the placement test and click the corresponding RSVP link to reserve your seat. PLEASE RSVP WITH YOUR UB EMAIL!!
Summer 2018 Dates and Times
- Tuesday, June 19, 2 p.m. RSVP
- Thursday, June 21, 6 p.m. RSVP
- Tuesday, July 10, 6 p.m. RSVP
- Saturday, July 14, 10:00 a.m. RSVP
- Saturday, July 14, 11:45 a.m. RSVP
- Saturday, August 11, 10 a.m. RSVP
- Saturday, August 11, 11:45 a.m. RSVP
- Tuesday, August 14, 2 p.m. RSVP
Transfer and Upper-Division Math Placement Testing Schedule
The math placement test dates below are for transfer and upper-division students who either did not take the first-year math placement test (as a first-year student) or did not transfer in a math course. To RSVP, choose the date below that you wish to sit for the placement test and click the corresponding RSVP link to reserve your seat.
Summer 2018 Dates and Times
First-Year Writing Placement
Students with fewer than 24 credits must complete Directed Self Placement (DSP) if they did not transfer the equivalent of WRIT 101 College Composition.
DSP provides students with information to place themselves into appropriate writing courses. Students complete an online assessment and compose two writing samples in response to a specific prompt. The writing samples are reviewed by a writing administrator who provides a placement recommendation to help students make a decision. With guidance from an adviser, the student decides which writing course provides the pathway to becoming a successful writer at the college level.Students will:
- submit two impromptu essays
- take an online writing self-inventory
- complete the ACCUPLACER reading and writing assessments
- consult with adviser and select the appropriate writing course.
Upper-Division Writing Placement Test (for WRIT 300)
WRIT 300 Composition and Research is an upper-division general education writing course required for all majors. Transfer and upper-division students wishing to take WRIT 300 must have:
- WRIT 101 or equivalent credit either through transferring credit or completing the course with a grade of C- or higher
- received a score of 300 on the upper-division writing placement test.
The 90-minute placement test consists of writing an essay response to a prompt. Each essay is read and evaluated by two Writing Program faculty members. Each reader scores the essay on a scale of 1 to 6, and the two scores are combined. 12 is the highest score. A score of 8 or above constitutes a WRIT 300 placement. A score of 7 or below constitutes a WRIT 200 placement.
Current University of Baltimore students should email Carey Miller at email@example.com if they are unsure if they are required to sit for upper-division writing placement test.
*Please note: Transfer students requiring placement should do so no later than their second semester at UB. Failure to do so may impact intended graduation schedule and course registration.
**If placement accommodations are required, please send current documentation of a disability (at least two weeks in advance) to the Office of Disability and Access Services.
Placement test scores are valid for two years in accordance with state guidelines.
Students who are required to sit for the math placement will take the ACCUPLACER Diagnostic Elementary Algebra Test. The ACCUPLACER test is comprised of 40 questions testing a students’ knowledge of algebraic expressions, linear and quadratic equations, and real numbers.
Test scores determine initial enrollment in MATH 115 Introductory Statistics, MATH 111 College Algebra or MATH 100 Foundational Mathematics.
It is not uncommon for students to place into developmental (foundational) courses that lead, in one or two terms, to credit classes in those subjects.
Students will be advised to register for appropriate courses based on placement test scores.
The test results are reviewed by the math coordinator and are posted to a students' UBPortal, under Placement Test Results.
What is placement?
Placement helps evaluate a students' current knowledge or skills.
Why do I need to take a placement test?
At UB, we use placement tests to help determine what courses you need to ensure that you are successful and achieve your academic goals. Placement tests only measure your current skill level; they do not measure your intelligence or your ability. It may be a good idea to review basic algebra concepts before taking the math placement test.
What are the grading criteria for the Upper-Division Writing Placement?
A student’s essay will be evaluated as a piece of formal writing using the following criteria:
- Purpose: Shows an indentifiable purpose.
- Topic: Has engaged the primary issue raised by the reading passage.
- Critical Thinking and Logic: Deonstrates an understanding of the reading's topic and a grasp of its use of evidence.
- Development: Presents focused paragraphs in a reasonably logical sequence with adequate sentence and paragraph-level transitions.
- Style/Usage/Grammar: Employs adequate use of sentence structure and vocabulary; exhibits control of written English, and while the essay may contain some grammatical flaws, they do not detract from the overall effect or clarity of the writing.
- Reflection: Inconsistently analyzes and reflects on their reading, writing, and thinking processes; purposes at least one important revision.
- Review the Upper-Division Writing Placement rubric.
What happens if my AP credits do not transfer in as WRIT 101?
If a student’s AP credits do not transfer as our WRIT 101 College Composition, the student will be required to register for this course within his or her first two semesters at UB.
Can I transfer my course credit to replace the WRIT 300 course?
Generally, no. It is unusual for a transfer student to have credit for an equivalent course. Exceptions are reviewed individually by the writing program director.
Can I retake the math and writing placement tests?
Students will be allowed to request one math placement test retake. After taking the math placement test for the first time, it is recommended that students wait 60 calendar days to retake the test to allow for adequate preparation and review time.
Upper-division students are not permitted to retake the writing placement test. Exceptions are determined by the writing program director.
Do you offer any sample prompts or workshops for the Upper-Division Writing Placement Test?
Sample Essay Prompt
This essay prompt is only a sample. It reflects the type of question or statement to which you will be expected to respond in a placement exam.
What If Facebook Used Micro-Targeting to Convert Bigots to Anti-Racism?
The data scientist Jeff Hammerbacher, one of Facebook’s early employees, lamented years ago that "the best minds of my generation are thinking about how to make people click ads." Social media companies succeeded in part by gathering as much information as possible about their users, so that ads could be micro-targeted as never before. It was suddenly much easier to reach and influence almost any kind of person — vegan weightlifters, estate lawyers with corgis.
Americans are now learning that “almost any kind of person” also includes self-avowed racists and unapologetic anti-Semites. Facebook has attracted sudden, intense scrutiny with news that it enabled advertisers to target users who expressed interest in topics including “Jew hater” and “how to burn Jews.” (Those categories were generated automatically, not conceived by Facebook employees.)
As the public reacted in dismay, the tech giant pledged that it would work to block such advertising in the future, showing deference to the norm that bigots deserve to be shunned. Their response reinforced the stigma associated with prejudice. Going forward, it will likely be marginally more difficult for malign political actors to reach coalitions of the hateful. And Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg has repeatedly said that “there is no place for hate in our community.”
But if it is now easier than ever to identify and target bigots, isn't there an opportunity to do more than merely stymie the hatemongers as they try to reach one another? Maybe this is an opportunity for the good guys to find the bad guys, invade their timelines, and convert them to anti-racism.
The black musician Daryl Davis began to interview Ku Klux Klan members in the early 1980s, formed relationships with many, and ultimately persuaded several to give up their hoods and robes. Derek Black was an heir apparent in the white supremacist movement when his classmates at New College of Florida found out about his hateful ideology. Rather than immediately cutting ties, they engaged their classmate in a series of social encounters. Their perseverance paid off: He renounced white supremacy and began working against it.
Facebook and other tech companies aren't going to reach white supremacists as friends or acquaintances might, face to face, but there may be ways to nudge them away from extremist bigotry by exposing them to new information or different social circles. Surely the expert data scientists and product creators of Silicon Valley can investigate what works to change their online behavior. Sure, I’m a bit wary of urging quasi-monopolistic corporations to manipulate members of the public, even in the service of A/B testing bigot conversion. Maybe deprogramming neo-Nazis is a step on a slippery slope that ends in all manner of mind control.
For those who take that view, here’s an alternative that would allow tech companies to stand at a greater remove: Outside organizations could come up with messages to engage hatemongers; Facebook and others would merely let them direct micro-targeted ads at those who “like” phrases such as "how to burn Jews," perhaps free of charge. What I have in mind is a persuasion campaign akin to the old "The More You Know" public service announcements. Our era's version could be "The Less You Hate."
Both of these suggestions admittedly transgress our bygone ideal of the web as a content-neutral platform for communication, where the architects step back and let a spontaneous order emerge. Urging platform owners to interfere, directly or even at a remove, feels like a failure.
But Facebook and its competitors already marshal the most private data about our lives and intimate relationships in an effort to keep us on their sites, clicking their links. They are already heavy-handed groundskeepers and they will never fully embrace content neutrality, as their decision to block future ads targeting "Jew haters" illustrates. So long as they're interceding in some cases, it seems to me they might as well do so against the KKK, the most murderous terrorist organization in U.S. history, and other white supremacist groups.
Friedersdorf, C. (2017, October 2). What if Facebook used micro-targeting to convert bigots to anti-racism? Los Angeles Times. Retrieved from http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-friedersdorf-facebook-targeting-20171002-story.html
Get tips and strategies to prepare for this test by attending the Achievement and Learning Center’s free Upper-Division Writing Placement Test Preparation Workshop.
What is WRIT 200, and why do I need to take it?
WRIT 200 Practicum in Writing is a 3-credit course which helps students prepare for WRIT 300 with an additional semester of writing instruction.
How do I take a placement test if I'm a Shady Grove student?
If you are a Shady Grove student needing to sit for the Upper-Division Writing Placement Test, please contact Toyette Sullivan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 301.738.6352.
Are there prep workshops for writing?
The Achievement and Learning Center offers a free Upper-Division Writing Placement Test Preparation Workshop which provides tips and strategies for success on the writing placement test. The writing placement test is required of all UB students registering for WRIT 200 Practicum in Writing or WRIT 300 Advanced Expository Writing.
When should I take the Upper-Division Writing Placement Test?
All students must take the writing placement test before their second registration at UB. Students are also encouraged to take this placement test early in order to register for the appropriate writing course. Failure to do so may affect their ability to get into a desired class section.
How do I RSVP for a placement test date?
How do I obtain my results after taking the Upper-Division Writing Placement Test?
Students' placement results are available through the MyUB Portal. Log in to MyUB and follow this path: My Self Service> Placement Test Scores
What do my math placement test results mean (transfer and upper-division students)?
- If the score is between 0-109 a student will be required to register for MATH 100 or MATH 101
- If the score is 110 or higher a student can select MATH 111, MATH 113 or MATH 115 to fulfill the General Education math requirement.
How do I prepare for the Math Placement Test?
In order to prepare for the Math Placement Test, you can a take sample test by going to ACCUPLACER Tests and clicking on Elementary Algebra. This will redirect you to some sample algebra problems which are similar to the ones you will encounter on the placement test.
You can also bring your sample problems to the Math Learning Center, where a math coach can walk you through solving the problems.