Placement Testing By Subject

RWU has placement guidelines to determine the appropriate entry-level course for new students taking courses in the areas of chemistry, foreign language, mathematics and writing.

Some of RWU's placement guidelines are based on a writing placement survey, while others are based on the results of online placement tests that new students take before summer orientation. You will receive your results at your orientation session.


Students who missed the testing deadline or those who are not satisfied with their initial placement results are encouraged to study and re-test. If re-testing improves your original placement, your Fall/Summer schedule may change. You will be informed of these changes via your RWU email - please check regularly!

Re-Testing will be operational from Friday, June 8th at 9:00am-Saturday June 23 at 12 midnight (Eastern Time).

Re-Testing will also be available on Tuesday, August 28 at 1pm in the School of Business, Rooms 222 & 223.

*RWU is test optional for admission with the exception of students applying to the Elementary and Secondary Education programs. In accordance with guidelines from the Rhode Island Department of Education, students applying to these programs must submit SAT or ACT scores. 

View the placement testing requirements for the majors offered at RWU.


Foreign Language

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There is no university-wide foreign language requirement at Roger Williams University, with the exception of the International Relations Major and the International Business Major.

If you are interested in pursuing a foreign language while attending RWU, we encourage you to take a foreign language placement test to determine your placement level in that language.

 Online Testing

 Access online tests 24/7 from home.

  • Turn off pop-up blocker before beginning the test.
  • Questions are multiple-choice.
  • There is no time limit on test.
  • Students may take more than one test.
  • Results are automatically sent to RWU.
  • Students are informed of test results at orientation.

Foreign Language Placement Tests 

For questions about waiving general education course requirements or for information on completing a placement test for ancient Greek, or American Sign Language, please contact the Dean's Office in the Feinstein College of Arts and Sciences (School of Humanities, Arts, and Education)

Student's that have taken Chinese or are interested in testing in this subject can contact Min Zhou at

Click here for additional information about foreign language courses and placement.


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RWU math placement testing is designed to determine the appropriate entry-level course in the RWU math sequence of a student's major. We do not use SAT scores or high school transcripts for math placement.

There are two online placement tests: RWU Algebra Placement Test and RWU Functions Placement Test.

Only students in majors that have math courses with prerequisites are required take the math placement tests. These majors include architecture, biology, chemistry, biochemistry, computer science, construction management, engineering, environmental science, forensics science, B.S. public health,  marine biology, mathematics, and aquaculture and aquarium science. In addition, undeclared students in the Feinstein College of Arts should also take these tests. If you are unsure, you can check the testing requirements by major listed under Academic Placement.

Online Testing

  • You can access online tests 24/7 from any computer.
  • Both online placement tests are required in the majors noted above.
  • All questions on both tests are multiple choice.
  • There is a two hour time limit on each test
  • Test 1 (Algebra) and Test 2 (Functions) may be taken at different times.
  • However, once a single test has been started, test takers may not stop and resume that particular test at a later time.
  • Calculator use is allowed.
  •  Results are automatically sent to RWU.
  •  Students are informed of test results at summer orientation

Click here for additional information about math courses and placement.

Online Testing for Students Requiring Extended Time

  • Students who have used extended time in high school or on the SAT/ACT exam may register for the 4 hour option of Test 1 (Algebra) and Test 2 (Functions).
  • The link to the 4 hour option is available within the math registration link.
  • While documentation of disability is not required for the utilization of extended time on the math placement tests, documentation will be required for the use of extended time and other accommodations during the academic year.
  • For more information about submitting documentation for courses in the academic year, please visit Student Accessibility Services
  •  Click here for math placement test registration.

Click here for additional information about math courses and placement


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Writing Placement is determined by the Directed Self Placement protocol.

What are the writing course requirements at RWU?

The University core curriculum writing requirement is Expository Writing (WTNG.102) and a second class at the 200 or 300 level. 

Some students may be required to take an additional course, Introduction to Academic Writing (WTNG.100), before entering Expository Writing.

Typically, students complete their writing requirement during their first three semesters at RWU. 

Click on the link below and then click on Begin Directed Self-Placement, the survey is located within the DSP.

Writing Protocol Page: Directed Self-Placement and survey are located here.


First Writing Course


Remainder of Sequence


WTNG.100, Introduction to Academic Writing


WTNG.102, Expository Writing, and a 200 or 300 level writing


WTNG.102, Expository Writing


WTNG.200/300 level


For course descriptions, please consult the RWU online catalog.

*RWU is test optional for admission, with the exception of students applying to the Elementary or Secondary Education programs in accordance with guidelines from the Rhode Island Department of Education.