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Placement Testing

The Academic Preparation and Placement (APP) program provides free placement testing for UK students and supplemental instruction for admitted students who do not meet state minimum test score requirements for college readiness to help prepare for college classes.

If you have any questions regarding placement testing please contact us at


We are currently in the process of transitioning to new placement tests for Reading and Writing.  Please check back soon.

Who needs to take a placement test?

  • Admitted first-time, first-year students who have not met the Kentucky Council of Postsecondary Education (CPE) minimum test score requirements for college readiness. 

NOTE: College readiness is based on the Kentucky System-Wide Standards of Assessment and Placement ( and Performance Indicators are agreed upon by Kentucky institutions can be found at the Council for Postsecondary Education’s website at

  • Admitted transfer students who do not provide test scores and/or do not have equivalent college-level transfer credit 
  • International students who have an ACT reading sub-score below 20 (SAT critical reading below 470), or an ACT English sub-score below 18 (SAT writing below 430), or a TOEFL score below 100, or any TOEFL sub-score below 20.

  • All admitted first time first year students with ACT Math sub-score under 30.

Students MUST take Placement Test(s) before their summer Registration date and/or before registering for classes.  Students with documented physical, learning, or temporary disabilities may receive assistance and support from the UK Disability Resource Center.

Which test do I take?

  • ALEKS Online Math Placement Test for students with ACT Math sub-score under 30.

  • COMPASS* for Reading for students with ACT Reading sub-score under 20.

  • COMPASS* for Writing for students with ACT Writing sub-score under 18 

  • ESL Placement Testing for international undergraduates who qualify for English proficiency testing (a version of COMPASS designed for students whose native language is not English.)

*These tests are free at UK, but students can take the test remotely at a testing site near home for a fee.

Please note: The University of Kentucky accepts placement testing scores for COMPASS math, reading and writing. As well as, KYOTE math, reading, and writing.

The placement test results will be used to determine the most approppriate courses for you as you move forward with college coursework.  After you take a placement test(s), you and your advisor will review your results and schedule the best classes for you based on your scores.

To send or verify scores:

Office of Undergraduate Admission
100 W. D. Funkhouser Bldg
University of Kentucky
Lexington, KY 40506-0054

You can also fax your scores to the attention of Michelle Nordin at 859.257.3823.