Document Type

Research Study

Publication Date

Spring 2018


The Next-Generation ACCUPLACER (NGA) is a redesigned set of placement tests that will more effectively place students into courses that match their skill level. These tests use the same content domain continuum as the SAT Suite of Assessments. The NGA tests are intended to replace the ACCUPLACER tests. This analysis looks at two of the Math NGA tests: The Next-Generation Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra, and Statistics (QAS) and The Next-Generation Advanced Algebra and Functions (AAF). The QAS is similar to the Elementary Algebra ACCUPLACER while the AAF is similar to the Intermediate Algebra ACCUPLACER. SCSU currently uses three ACCUPLACER math tests: Elementary Algebra (EA), Intermediate Algebra (IA), and College Level Math (CLM). The objective of this report is to determine cut scores for introductory math courses at St. Cloud State University. Three math courses from Spring 2018 have been analyzed: MATH 072, Intermediate Algebra; MATH 112, College Algebra; and MATH 221, Calculus I. A statewide committee suggested an AAF cut score of 250 for MATH 112. However, this cut score seems to be too high based on results. New cut scores have been recommended for all three math courses. The main findings from this research are the following:

  • Regression models show that current placement tests are not strongly related to the QAS; however, there are stronger correlations between current placement scores and the AAF.
  • Cut scores have been recommended for each of the three math courses: for MATH 072, a QAS score of 255; for MATH 112, an AAF score of 245; and for MATH 221, an AAF score of 263.
  • Logistic Regression models show that a student’s demographics are not significant predictors of whether they will meet the recommended cut scores.

With this research, SCSU will be able to use the NGA tests to place students into a math course that is at their skill level.


Edited by Shaya Kraut