Testing Center

Most new Thomas Nelson students must take the English and math placement tests before registering for classes

Thomas Nelson administers the Virginia Placement Test, which is required by Virginia's Community Colleges. These are not admission tests. They evaluate college readiness by identifying academic strengths and areas that need development. The results—in reading, writing and mathematics—indicate the ability to succeed in college-level classes.

Preparing for the Placement Tests

Not preparing for the placement tests could cost you time and money.

  • Take the test seriously and give yourself enough time to finish
  • Take the English and math tests on different days to maximize your success. Each test takes about two hours to complete
  • Prepare and do your best! Review our tips and take both the practice English and math tests online

Based on your scores, you may be required to enroll in developmental English and/or math classes to improve your skills and knowledge in certain areas. Tuition is charged for these classes, but the credits you earn do not count toward your degree or certificate.

Prepare for the Virginia Placement Test

Do you need to take the Placement Test?

You must take the placement tests if you:

  • are a new student planning to earn an associate degree or certificate
  • are a new student planning to take English or math, or classes that require English or math.
  • plan to be a dual enrollment student

You are exempt from the placement tests if you:

  • earned the following scores on the SAT or ACT in the last 2 years:


    SAT (Before March 2016)

    SAT (After March 2016)



    Reading & Writing



    18 (English)

    165 (English RLA)






  • are taking classes for personal enrichment and not enrolled in an English, math or history class
  • submitted a transcript to Enrollment Services showing completion of college-level English and/or mathematics courses with a grade of C or higher from an accredited institution where English is the official language
  • are not taking classes toward a degree but have completed nine or more credit hours at Thomas Nelson with a grade-point average below 2.0
  • have satisfactory Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, College Level Advancement Placement (CLEP), Defense Activity for Educational Support Program (DANTES) or Excelsior College scores for English and/or mathematics as determined by the college.

Walk-In Testing Hours

Hampton campus, Wythe Hall, room 254A

  • Monday 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Tuesday 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Wednesday 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Thursday 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Friday 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Saturday 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. (1st and 3rd only)

(757) 825-3540 or (757) 825-2795

Historic Triangle campus, room 124

  • Monday 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Wednesday 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Thursday 8 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Friday 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. 

(757) 258-6538

While the placement tests are untimed, we require that students allow at least two hours to take each segment of the placement test. Students, therefore, will not be permitted to begin a placement test if there is less than two hours remaining in the day’s schedule.

Contact Testing Center

Hampton campus, Wythe Hall, room 254A

M 8 a.m.–8 p.m.
T 8 a.m.–7 p.m.
W 8 a.m.–7 p.m.
TH 8 a.m.–8 p.m.
F 8 a.m.–5 p.m.

Historic Triangle campus, room 124A

M 8 a.m.–7 p.m.
T 8 a.m.–5 p.m.
W 8 a.m.–5 p.m.
TH 8 a.m.–7 p.m.
F 8 a.m.–5 p.m.