From APR pages


The EPT is designed to assess the level of reading and writing skills of entering undergraduate students so that they can be placed in appropriate baccalaureate courses. Those undergraduate students who do not demonstrate college-level skills will be enrolled in courses or programs designed to help them attain these skills. The test is not a condition for admission to the CSU, but it is a condition of enrollment. Students may take the EPT only once. It may not be repeated. There is no charge to take the EPT.


The CSU English Placement Test (EPT) must be completed by all entering undergraduates, with the exception of those who present proof of one of the following:

  • a score of 550 or above on the verbal section of the College Board SAT I: Reasoning Test taken April 1995 or after
  • a score of 24 or above on the enhanced ACT English Test taken October 1989 or later
  • a score of 680 or above on the and adjusted College Board SAT II: Writing Test taken May 1998 or after
  • a score of 3, 4, or 5 on either the Language and Composition or Literature and Composition examination of the College Board Advanced Placement Program
  • completion and transfer to the CSU of a college course that satisfies the General Education-Breadth requirement or the Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum requirement in English Composition, provided such a course was completed with a grade of C or better

Focus on English (EPT) provides information about the English competencies required by the CSU, and it includes a number of frequently asked questions. Focus on English includes samples of the types of questions appearing on the EPT, and there is an essay scoring guide and sample essays.

As of fall 1999, students are able to have their writing skills diagnosed through the CSU Diagnostic Writing Service. Students may access the service for a small fee at the following website: http://www.essayeval.org. Through this service, students may submit essays responding to an EPT essay question, and trained CSU faculty will read their essay, providing students with diagnostic comments about their writing skills.

The Diagnostic Writing Service (DWS) is available as an on-line service for students and teachers to assess current writing skills against college-level expectations. The DWS allows individual students to respond to actual EPT writing prompts and to improve their own writing in response to the diagnostic feedback. It is also intended as a teacher-mediated program that encourages high school teachers to become familiar with college-level expectations for writing, to have access to the relevant diagnostic information for their class as a whole, and to incorporate the DWS and related materials into their curricula. For further information visit the Diagnostic Writing Service website at: