Opinion: Assessment tests better prepares students for university level classes

By Iman Palm

Graphic by Iman Palm

In compliance with legislation AB-705 California community colleges aren’t requiring newly enrolled students to take an assessment test, which measured a student’s level in math, english, and reading before registering.

This legislation was passed to increase the rate of students taking transfer-level classes which would ultimately increase transfer rates.

In the past, the assessment test was used as a placement marker to tell the student what classes they should take based on their performance on it.

LBCC now uses a guided placement tool, which is a survey that asks new students questions about their previous educational history.

It is great that the college is taking steps to increase transfer rates however, using a guided placement tool in place of the assessment test isn’t the best solution since it’s not an accurate way to determine what level of classes a student needs to take.

Students can easily believe that they are ready to take transfer level classes when in all reality they aren’t.

With the guided pathways in place, students are being put on a faster pathway to graduate from the school, however, if they aren’t properly prepared for university level classes; the classes they are taking here may not benefit them to the fullest extent in the long run.

Students that are placed in transfer level classes but aren’t prepared to take them, takes space away from students who are ready for transfer level classes, making it a longer process from them to transfer.

With the assessment test, students are being accurately tested and are being placed into classes they need.

If a student is placed in a remedial course, it may be a longer process for them to ultimately transfer out of LBCC, but rushing them through classes won’t make them prepared for classes at the university level.

Students and administrations at LBCC should contact state representatives to express the possible downside of this bill.