Placement Tests During New Student Orientation

Placement tests and guidance are offered during New Student Orientation (NSO) in specific subject areas to help you determine where to begin your studies during your first year. The following information has been prepared for new students entering September 2015. [2016 information will be updated in May 2016.]

DETERMINING WHETHER YOU SHOULD TAKE A PLACEMENT TEST (OR TESTS)

Stanford uses a variety of ways to determine where students should begin their studies at Stanford, and placement is treated separately from whether you have transfer credit for the previous courses. Placement tests will be offered during New Student Orientation for physics, chemistry, and several foreign languages. The tests are intended to assess your existing command of the material; thus, it is neither necessary nor advisable that you study for these tests.

If you took Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate exams, consult the Advanced Placement Credit Chart and the International Baccalaureate Credit Chart to see whether your score suggests a particular placement in classes. The Approaching Your Liberal Education section of the Approaching Stanford Handbook provides guidance about placement considerations and course sequences in a few subject areas that require early planning (calculus, chemistry, and physics). The following department websites also offer information about placement and choosing among the introductory courses:

If in doubt, take the placement test. The placement test will not hinder you from taking the classes you hope to take and it will give you valuable information about how to focus your studies and effort. Your Academic Advising Director or Academic Advisor for Student-Athletes can also give you guidance on choosing courses, and you may correspond with her or him via email or phone after August 18.

Note: the written portion for some Language Placement tests are taken online during the summer, according to this schedule. If you are not able to meet this schedule, email languagecenter@stanford.edu.

SCHEDULE OF PLACEMENT TESTS DURING NSO (2015)

The schedule for placement tests offered during NSO will be posted below in August and will also be included in the printed NSO Student Events Calendar (available at orientation.stanford.edu after September 1 and in your check-in packet when you arrive on September 15, 2015). If you think that you will need to take a placement test during NSO, particularly if you may need to take multiple tests, be sure to check the online schedule after September 1 so that you know where you will need to go during NSO. Definitely review the NSO calendar no later than the end of the day on Tuesday, September 15 to plan your schedule.

Taking Multiple Tests:If you need to take more than one placement test, please take the Physics test first on Wednesday, September 16, as the department needs more time to grade it. Then take the language make-up test on Friday, September 18, if needed; and the Chemistry make-up test on Monday, September 21. The Physics make-up test will also be offered on Monday, September 21.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Language Placement Tests - from 8:50 - 10:00 a.m. For all language placement tests, doors close at 8:50 a.m. sharp. Bring your SUID card.

  • Arabic Oral and Written Test
  • Chinese Oral and Written Test 
  • French Oral Test 
  • German Oral Test 
  • Hebrew Oral and Written Test 
  • Hindi Oral and Written Test
  • Italian Oral Test 
  • Japanese Oral and Written Test
  • Korean Oral and Written Test
  • Latin and Classical Greek Written Test
  • Portuguese Oral and Written Test
  • Russian Oral and Written Test 
  • Spanish Oral Test
  • Spanish for Home Background Speakers Written Test
  • Tagalog Oral and Written Test
  • Vietnamese Oral and Written Test 

Chemistry Placement Test - from 9:00 - 10:00 a.m. Hewlett 201 Bring a pencil, eraser, calculator, and your SUID card, and know your SUNet ID.

Physics PLACEMENT Diagnostic- from 9:00 - 10:00 a.m. Hewlett 200 Bring a pencil, eraser, and your SUID card, and know your SUNet ID.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Make-Up Language Placement Tests - from 8:50 - 10:00 a.m. For all language placement tests, doors close at 8:50 a.m. sharp. Bring your SUID card.

  • Arabic Oral and Written Test
  • Chinese Oral and Written Test 
  • French Oral Test 
  • German Oral Test 
  • Hebrew Oral and Written Test
  • Hindi Oral and Written Test 
  • Italian Oral Test
  • Japanese Oral and Written Test 
  • Korean Oral and Written Test 
  • Latin and Classical Greek Written Test
  • Portuguese Oral and Written Test
  • Russian Oral and Written Test
  • Spanish Oral Test
  • Spanish for Home Background Speakers Written Test 
  • Tagalog Oral and Written Test
  • Vietnamese Oral and Written Test 

Monday, September 21, 2015

Make-Up Chemistry Placement Test - at 7:00 p.m. Herrin T175 Bring a pencil, eraser, calculator, and your SUID card, and know your SUNet ID.

Make-Up PHYSICS PLACEMENT Diagnostic- at 7:00 p.m. Hewlett 200 Bring a pencil, eraser, and your SUID card, and know your SUNet ID.

RECEIVING YOUR PLACEMENT RESULTS (2015)

Your placement test results will help determine the recommended starting point for your coursework in these subjects based on your knowledge in those areas. You may consult with your Academic Advising Director (or Academic Advisor for Student-Athletes) if you would like further assistance in interpreting the placement recommendation. Your Academic Advising Director will be holding group sessions on Thursday and Friday of NSO, during which you may ask placement questions.

Below is the timeframe by which you can expect to receive the placement tests results for tests taken during NSO:

Chemistry Placement Test:

Your placement will be emailed to your Stanford email account by midnight on the day of the test.

Language Placement Tests:

Results from the Language Placement tests will be posted on the Stanford Language Center's website at the end of the day (either Wednesday, September 16 or Friday, September 18, for the make-up test). If students do not see their SUID listed, they should email the test coordinator (contact information is listed at the top of each results page) or languagecenter@stanford.edu.

Physics Placement Diagnostic:

Your score will be emailed to your Stanford email account during the week of NSO and you will be provided with guidance on placement into the PHYSICS 40 or 60 series, or whether the department recommends that you take a math and/or physics course in the Autumn Quarter before beginning PHYSICS 41 in the Winter. If you take the make-up diagnostic, results will be emailed during the first week of class.If you have not heard back from us by the Friday of the week you take the test, please contact us at choosingphysics@stanford.edu.