Testing Partners

Testing Services partners with other placement and assessment centers across campus, including:



Students with disabilities can request and receive certain testing accommodations, as recommended by Disability Services and Programs (DSP), following a detailed review of the documented disability. Testing accommodations are requested and recommended on an individual basis. For more information and for descriptions of the more common testing accommodations that are available, please visit the Disability Services and Programs website.



Foreign Language Placement Exams are administered by the USC Language Center.  Placement in elementary and intermediate foreign language courses is made by the appropriate placement examination.  Students who studied a foreign language in high school, or elsewhere, prior to enrolling at USC must take the placement examination in that language.

Students with no prior exposure to a foreign language or those who wish to learn a new foreign language (different from what they studied in high school or elsewhere) can request approval from the Language Center to enroll in an introductory (Level 1) foreign language course.

For more information and for placement exam dates, visit the USC Language Center website.



The International Student English Placement Exam (ISE) is administered by the USC American Language Institute (ALI) and is required of all newly admitted International students whose first language is not English.

The results of the exam determine whether or not students must take special courses in English from the USC American Language Institute.

Exemptions based on TOEFL (iBT) scores or prior study in the U.S. are available.

There are two parts to the ISE Exam which may be given on two different days. Students’ English language proficiency is assessed in writing and oral skills .

Writing skills are assessed by an essay. Students are given 40 minutes to write an essay. A team of experienced graders reads the essays and grades students on their ability to write a well-organized essay using accurate and appropriate English. Students are assessed on comprehensibility, academic style, vocabulary, grammar, development, and coherence.

Oral skills are assessed in an oral interview that takes approximately ten minutes. The interview is carried out in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere by two interviewers who ask students to talk about their personal life, the composition that they wrote previously, and a topic chosen by the interviewers. Students are assessed on fluency, pronunciation, vocabulary, and grammar.

Please visit the USC American Language Institute website for additional details and to register for an upcoming exam date.