Composition Placement Examination (CPE)
Certain entering freshmen, including those who receive a combined score lower than 1100 on the Critical Reading and Writing sections of the SAT or an ACT English score below 24, are required to take the Placement Examination. Those who do not score above the minimum standard must complete WRIT 120 before enrolling in WRIT 140. Entering freshmen who are required to take the Placement Examination will be notified during the admissions process.
Placement Tests are required for the following courses:
Mathematics – MATH 108, 116, 117, 125 and 126.
Chemistry – CHEM 050, 102, 105.
Language – For placement in the first three semesters or to meet the requirement in French, German, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin Chinese, Latin, Russian and Spanish. For other languages not mentioned above, contact the Language Center at (213) 740-1188 in the THH building, room 309.
Placement Test Dates
Contact the Center for Testing and Assessment for test times, dates and sites at (213) 740-7166 or sait.usc.edu/academicsupport/cta.
Incoming students can take the math test and four foreign language tests (French, German, Russian and Spanish) online at usc.edu/orientation. The four remaining language tests (Mandarin Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Latin) must be taken in person with paper and pencil on one of the scheduled dates.
Only students admitted to USC may take the tests and are required to show their USC ID upon arrival. Students who do not have their USC ID can show another form of identification, but must also show proof of enrollment. Two #2 pencils and a pen are also required.