The Writing Test of COMPASS





How do Colleges Use Writing COMPASS Scores

What is the COMPASS Writing Test?

The writing section is taken by those students who are interested in pursuing a course that has significant writing load. It is also taken by those students who are planning to undertake writing courses at the college level. This is a computerized examination where you will need to sit in front of the computer and work on the questions that will be displayed on screen. It is important for you to know that all the questions in the writing section of the COMPASS consist of multiple-choice questions. This means that you will be given answer options for each of the questions and from these options; you have to select an answer that you feel is the correct solution. There is no time limit for this exam and you can take your own time to work on the questions. In other words, you do not have to worry about not being able to answer all the questions in the exam because there is no time restraint.

Utilization of COMPASS Writing Scores

The scores of this section are used by the college that you intend to enrol yourself in. This result is shown in the test report as an individual score, along with the scores of the other sections (Reading and Maths). The score that you will obtain can be a number from 1 to 100 where 100 is the maximum score you can obtain. It is actually a percentile score and the more you score, the better your chances will be to get admission into the writing course in the college that you are interested in. There are many uses of the score and these are as the following:

  • For the purpose of enrolment: The College will make use of the score to determine whether or not you should be admitted to the writing course that you have shown interest in. When it comes to this, it is important for you to know that there is no passing score. On the other hand, the institution may have a cut-off score and students who obtain a score below this score may not be allowed admission into the course.

  • To decide whether to continue with the course or not: If you have already enrolled for a course, you may have to take the COMPASS test as a part of your orientation program. The scores of the writing test will then determine whether it will be a good idea to continue with the course for which you have enrolled in the college. If you do not have the skills required for the course that you have selected, it is best that you do not waste your time and money in pursuing it because you may not be able to successfully complete it.

  • To find out whether any preparatory course is required or not: Once you take the test, you can use the result to determine whether you need to undertake any prep classes to supplement the course that you have chosen, or not.

Writing Section of the COMPASS

This is a test section where you will be asked to make corrections to the errors in the essays that are displayed on the computer screen. You will find that there are five answer options for each question, from where you need to choose the option that you believe is correct. The time taken by a student will range from person to person. Some people can finish this test in as little as 15 minutes while there are also some people who may take around 90 minutes to complete this test section.

Importance of COMPASS Writing Test

  • The writing section will determine whether or not you will be granted admission into the course that you wish to pursue.
  • It will tell you whether or not you have good writing skills.
  • It will tell you your weaknesses in the writing section (English) of COMPASS.



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