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Placement Testing

As a new student, Enrollment Services can tell you if a Placement Test is required for your program of study. The Testing Center administers TCL’s placement tests known as the COMPASS. When you have completed the COMPASS test, you will need to speak with your academic advisor regarding your course registration. You can easily identify your academic advisor by clicking onto the following link here, and searching for your program name along with the first letter of your last name to determine your assigned academic advisor.



Beaufort Campus Testing Center

921 Ribaut Rd., Beaufort, SC 29901

Building 1  |  843-470-8400

Office Hours M-TH 8-5:30/F 8-11:30

Testing Hours M-TH 8:30-11:30, 12:30-3:30

F: By Appointment Only


New River Campus Testing Center

100 Community College Drive, Bluffton, SC 29909

Reception Area  |  843-470-6002

Only COMPASS offered Testing Hours M-TH: By Appointment Only


Hampton Campus Testing Center

54 Tech Circle, Varnville, SC 29944


Only COMPASS offered Testing Hours M-TH: By Appointment Only

Allow yourself at least 2 hours to take all 3 parts of the COMPASS test.



Testing Center Rules and Regulations

  1. Students must present a photo I.D. prior to testing.
  2. Food and drinks are not allowed in the Testing Center
  3. Cell phones are to be turned off when entering the Testing Center and stored in a locker.
  4. Children are not allowed to accompany students into the testing room and may not be left unattended in the lobby or hallway.
  5. You must leave enough time to complete your test before the Testing Center closes.
  6. If you have a documented disability and need special accommodations for placement testing, please contact: Rodney Adams, Dean of Students, at 843-525-8219.









The Compass test is a computerized adaptive testing system that helps place students into appropriate courses. It is designed to help determine a student’s strengths and weaknesses in the basic skills of reading, writing and math. Computer experience is not needed and the tests are not timed. The average time to complete the test is 2 hours. Do no rush as you may take as long as you need. Compass is not a pass-fail test, but is used for appropriate course placement to ensure successful completion of your academic program goals.


You will receive your scores immediately following your test. After completion of the test, you will need to make an appointment with your Academic Advisor for assistance in registering for your classes.


You must bring a photo identification with you when you come to test. If you do not have a photo id you will not be allowed to test. You will also need to know your social security number. Scratch paper will be provided for you as you will not be allowed to use your own. There is a calculator on the computer that you will be able to use.


There is no charge for the initial Compass test.


Sending Scores to another College

You may request to have your placement scores sent to another institution for a $35.00 fee. You must fill out a Student Release form before we can send the scores. You must bring your form, your photo identification, and your payment receipt before we will send the scores. All information on the Release form must be filled out in its entirety.




The Beaufort Testing Center offers two exams which will allow us to award exemption credit for knowledge demonstrated as a result of non-traditional learning experiences. The College Level Examination Program (CLEP) and DSST (Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support) may be taken and credit will be awarded provided the appropriate scores are attained. It is the student’s responsibility to request his/her official scores on the CLEP and DSST tests to be sent to Student Records.


Benefits of CLEP and DSST for our TCL students:

  • Reduced student debt/loan amount
  • Quicker progression to higher-level courses
  • Shortened time to degree
  • Increase retention


Study material is available at getcollgecredit.com and clep.collegeboard.org. Students must register on the CLEP website before taking a CLEP test. You will create an account and receive a ticket which much be presented to the test administrator before your test. If you do not have a ticket, you will not be able to test.


Clep tests are $80.00 for non-military and are paid when you register online for the test and receive your ticket. You can do this at www.clep.collegeboard.com. You will create an account here and receive your ticket. There is also a $25.00 proctor fee for the test and is paid to the cashier in Building 2. You must bring your ticket and id for the test.


The DSST fee is $80.00 and will be paid during your test so please bring your credit card with you for the test. The proctor fee for the DSST is $20.00 and is paid to the cashier in Building 2. You must present your receipt of payment and a photo id before you test.


CLEP exams are funded by the U.S. government through the Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support(DANTES) for the following:

Military personnel(active duty, reserve, National Guard): Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, U.S. Coast Guard, Army Reserve, Air Force Reserve, Marine Corps Reserve, Navy Reserve, Coast Guard Reserve, Army and Air National Guard.


Spouses and civilian employees of : Air Force Reserve, Army Reserve, Coast Guard(active and reserve).


NOTE: CLEP exams for civil service employees, inactive guard or reserve personnel, and spouses and dependents not listed above are NOT funded through DANTES. In addition, the U.S. government will not fund any previously funded CLEP examinations.


Contact DANTES at 850-452-1922 for questions regarding eligibility for DANTES-funded CLEP exams.


Please contact the Test Center to make an appointment for both the CLEP and DSST. There are certain times and days on which these tests are given.




The Beaufort Testing Center provides test proctoring for students who are enrolled in other institutions and need someone to proctor their test(s). Students must contact the Testing Center for more information and to make an appointment. The other institution must work with the TCL staff in order to arrange for exam materials and proctoring instructions to be sent. Instructions for on-line exams may be sent directly by email to testingcenter@tcl.edu. Exams to be given in paper and pencil format must be sent by mail. Please allow adequate time for delivery of exam materials prior to your desired test date.

TCL charges a $35.00 proctor fee for each test taken. This will be paid in the cashier’s office located in Building 2. You will then need to bring the receipt to Building 1 confirming payment with you on your test day. You will also need to bring a photo identification with you. Always confirm that exam materials have been received in the testing center prior to your arrival. The testing center can be reached at 843-470-8400.



TEAS (Test of Essential Academic Skills)

The Test of Essential Academic Skills (Version 5) covers English and Language Usage, Math, Reading and Science.

The test is approximately 3 ½ hours long. The sections are broken down as follows:

  • Reading Section is 58 minutes with 48 questions.
  • Math Section is 51 minutes with 34 questions.
  • Science section is 66 minutes with 54 questions.
  • English and Language Usage Section is 34 minutes with 34 questions.


 What you should know:

  • The TEAS test is give only on the Beaufort Campus in Building 1.
  • Students must call and make an appointment. We will not start a test after 1:30.
  • Students may not leave the testing area unless there is an emergency.
  • Calculators are not permitted.
  • A photo I.D. is required for testing.
  • Cost of the test is $60.00 for students and $90.00 for non-students.
  • For additional information regarding TEAS testing please visit: www.atitesting.com.
  • Students are only allowed to take the test twice within a year from the first time they took the test.
  • You will receive your results immediately.



Pearson Vue

The Beaufort Testing Center is an official Pearson Vue Certification Testing Center and are authorized to offer certification exams in many areas such as CompTIA Security +, VMWare and Cisco. For more information offered at this location and to schedule a test please visit the Pearson Vue website at www.vue.com. You can also call the Testing Center for more information at 843-470-8400.


Download the ASSET Student Guide which includes: ASSET Test Description, types of questions, test-taking tips, and calculator guidelines. It also includes sample tests for: writing, reading, numerical, elementary algebra, intermediate algebra, college algebra and geometry. Plus sample test answers.

Take a practice ASSET test here.



A COMPASS study guide is available for purchase in the TCL Bookstore located in buidling 12.