Testing Center


Who should take the COMPASS test?

The COMPASS is administered to all full-time students, part-time students enrolled in six or more credit hours, and transfer students who have not successfully completed a college-level mathematics or English course. Students who have satisfactorily completed English Composition and a college-level math course or students who have received ACT/SAT scores within the past five years may be exempt. Students must submit official copies for the ASSET/COMPASS to be waived.

When is the COMPASS administered?

The COMPASS is administered on a daily basis. The COMPASS test will begin three hours before the testing center closes for the day. Call the Northeast Community Testing Center at 402-844-7281; email testing@northeast.edu; or stop by the Testing Center in the College Welcome Center Room 1252 or Room 1256 to schedule a date and time to test. Testing arrangements should be made in advance of starting your program/major.

Is the COMPASS timed?

The COMPASS is a comprehensive computer-adaptive test. The time required to complete the test varies according to individual’s needs and abilities.

When will the student receive test results?

The student will receive their test scores immediately after completion of the test. A college representative will review the test scores with the student and explain how they relate to specific courses and programs the student may be considering.

Is it possible to fail the assessment?

The COMPASS is not a pass/fail test. The scores will identify the student’s strengths and needs. The test scores are used for initial placement in English, reading, and math courses.

Which skill areas does COMPASS evaluate?

COMPASS evaluates skills in the following areas: reading, writing, pre-algebra/numerical skills and algebra. The following is a list of skills that may be included in each test subject:

  • Reading Comprehension
    • Referring
    • Reasoning
  • Usage/Mechanics
    • Punctuation
    • Basic grammar and usage
    • Sentence Structure
  • Rhetorical Skills
    • Strategy
    • Organization
    • Style
Numerical Skills/Pre-Algebra
  • Basic math Skills
  • Fractions/Decimals
  • Ratios and proportions
  • Percentages
  • Algebraic equations
  • Basic operations with polynomials
  • Factoring polynomials
  • Linear equation
  • Exponents and radicals

What should the student bring?

The student must bring a current photo ID. No personal calculators are permitted. However, an embedded calculator is available for use.

Acceptable forms of photo identification include:

  • Current student ID
  • Current driver’s license
  • State approved ID
  • Current state of federal ID card
  • Current passport of passport card
  • Tribal ID card
  • Naturalization card

Testing Center Guidelines:

  • Schedule an appointment for the exam. (Space is limited)
  • Current driver’s license
  • All exams must be completed in one sitting.
  • Tester Must:
    • Complete a sign-in-sheet
    • Present a current photo ID
    • Know the name of the instructor, and the course
  • All personal items will be securely stored
    • All cell phones, pagers, and any other electronic devices will be turned off and stored
    • All hats, caps, scarves, and coats will be removed and stored
    • All watches, jewelry more than ¼ inch
  • May not leave the Testing Center without permission of the Testing Staff once testing has begun
  • Food (including gum) and drink are not permitted in the Testing Center and/or testing rooms unless otherwise permitted
  • Student may not access his/her personal belongings without permission once testing has begun
  • If a break is permitted during testing, the student may not access his/her cell phone or any other electronic devices
  • No children allowed in the testing center

How much does it cost?

The COMPASS is provided free of charge for any student who has applied for admission to Northeast. If students are planning to attend another college or institution or need to schedule a Remote COMPASS, Northeast will assess a $15.00 fee.


  • Arrive before your scheduled time.
  • Bring your current photo ID and social security number.
  • Leave your cell phone in your vehicle.
  • Students with disabilities who are taking test and or plan to attend Northeast Community College may need reasonable accommodations, modifications, or auxiliary aids/assistive technology, in order to have equal access to programs and services offered. If you need accommodations, please contact the Disability Services Coordinator, at (402) 844-7343 or mary@northeast.edu. Documentation regarding your disability is required.
  • No visitors are allowed during testing.
  • Test taking tips for the COMPASS test are available at www.act.org/compass/.
  • Visit the following Internet websites to brush up reading, writing, and math skills:
  • Current photo ID required for all testing.
  • Scores are good for 5 years.
  • Students may take the COMPASS test twice during a semester. Retest fee is $10.00.