English Assessments Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some common questions and answers about COMM 0015 and COMM 0033. If you have any questions that are not answered below or on our English Assessments page, please email us.

COMM 0015 English Competency Assessment FAQ

COMM 0033 English Speaking and Listening Assessment FAQ

Why do I need to take COMM 0015?

Like many institutions, BCIT has a test to ensure students have the skills needed to succeed in various programs and levels of courses. If you are applying to a full-time program and do not have the English prerequisites, this test will assess your English 12 level.

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What is the cost for COMM 0015?

Visit the COMM 0015 web page or contact Student Information and Enrolment Services, for current test fee.

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How do I register for COMM 0015?

Visit the COMM 0015 web page or contact Student Information and Enrolment Services.

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When is COMM 0015 offered?

For the most current list of available test dates, visit the COMM 0015 web page or contact Student Information and Enrolment Services.

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What will be on the COMM 0015 test?

The entire COMM 0015 test is done on a computer in a BCIT Test Centre. It has three parts:

  1. Reading Skills - a 20 multiple-choice test consisting of identifying the main idea, organization, details, general principles, and intent of paragraphs. The suggested time for this section is 60 minutes.
  2. Sentence Skills - a 20 multiple-choice test consisting of identifying sentence errors and choosing the missing components of sentences to make them correct. The suggested time for this section is 30 minutes.
  3. Writing Skills - a 3- to 600-word composition on a given topic. The maximum time for this section is 60 minutes.

You have 90 minutes total to complete Parts 1 and 2, and then an additional 60 minutes to complete Part 3. The entire COMM 0015 test is approximately 2.5 hours long.

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How can I prepare for the COMM 0015 test?

To help you prepare for COMM 0015, you can review our sample questions and answers [PDF]. If you would like more preparation for the Reading and Sentence Skills portions of the test, you can find further sample questions and answers or practice tests available online. Simply type “Accuplacer practice tests” into your search engine, and select appropriate sources from those that appear. For example, many post-secondary institutions (like BCIT) have sample questions or tests posted for their students. However, BCIT is not responsible for the accuracy or quality of the sample or practice tests posted by other organizations.

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What should I bring to the COMM 0015 test?

You must bring one piece of valid photo identification (a BCIT myBCIT card, a driver's licence issued in Canada, a Permanent Resident card, a BC Identification card, or a passport) and payment receipt form to the test. Without a valid photo identification, you will not be permitted to take the test and your test fee will be forfeited. NOTE: Please arrive at least 10 minutes before the scheduled test time.

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Where do I park at BCIT?

Please see BCIT's parking information website.

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Where do I go for the COMM 0015 test?

To check the location of the test, visit the COMM 0015 web page or contact Student Information and Enrolment Services, then view the interactive Burnaby campus map. NOTE: Please arrive at least 5 minutes before the scheduled test time.

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What should I do if I can't attend the COMM 0015 session I registered for?

The COMM 0015 test fee is non-refundable. However, you can transfer your test fee to the next available test date, if your request for transfer is received by Student Information and Enrolment Services at least one business day BEFORE the date and time of your original test. A transfer fee will apply. No transfers will be granted after the test date (NO EXCEPTIONS).

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When will my COMM 0015 test results be available?

Test results are available for online viewing at Desire2Learn (D2L) within seven (7) business days of completing the test.

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How do I find out my COMM 0015 test results?

You must log into Desire2Learn (D2L) to view your marks and upgrading course placement level. Follow the step-by-step instructions below:

  1. Go to Desire2Learn (D2L).
  2. In the login area (top left of screen), enter your full student number (e.g. A00...) and your myBCIT password. Your password, by default, is your birthday (YYMMDD) unless you have changed it.
  3. On the welcom page, click on "Select a Course" (in the grey menu bar at the top of the screen) then select "COMM 0015".
  4. Click on "Grades" (in the blue menu bar at the top right of the screen). Once your test is graded, the screen will show letter grades (matching English 12 grade levels) for each of the test components, the final mark for the test, as well as reading and writing upgrading course placement level.

If your marks have not yet appeared, please try again later. Results will be posted within seven (7) business days of your test.

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I can't access my COMM 0015 results online. Can you tell me my results?

We cannot give results over the phone or in person. You are responsible for checking your own results online at Desire2Learn (D2L). If your marks have not yet appeared, please try again later. Results will be posted within seven (7) business days of your test.

If you have technical difficulties accessing your records online, please contact IT Services by phone at 604-412-7444 (Option 1) or email.

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What mark do I need to achieve in order to be eligible to take a part-time studies Communication course?

To meet the entrance requirement for: You need this mark in COMM 0015:
COMM 1103, 1120, 2202, and 2203 70 or better
COMM 1106 50 or better
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Can I review my COMM 0015 test?

Like other such placement tests (e.g. the LPI), individual tests cannot be viewed by students after being written. This is partly to ensure the test questions remain secure and valid. In addition, individual test review and feedback is not possible due to the large numbers of students who take the test.

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How is the COMM 0015 test marked?

The Reading Comprehension and Sentence Skills components of the test are marked by computer. These computer scores are converted into BCIT a BCIT grade: B, C+, C, C-, or U (unsatisfactory). Since "B" is the highest English 12 mark required by a BCIT program, the tests are only marked for English 12 B level and below.

The writing portion of the test is marked independently by at least two trained markers from BCIT's Communication Department. If the two marks do not correspond, a third marker reviews the test and decides the mark, in consultation with the other markers as appropriate. Please see our sample questions and answers [PDF] for more information on the essay criteria and score descriptions.

Although all three sections of the test are taken into consideration in assigning a final test mark, this final mark is not a simple average of the three test scores. Furthermore, students must pass all three sections of the test to receive a passing mark. If all the test sections are passed, the student's performance in each test section is assessed and compared to determine the student's skill level. To ensure the final score is a reasonably accurate indication of skill level, two of the three section scores must be equal to or higher than the final score level. Moreover, the final score should not be more than one mark level higher than the lowest section score. This is so that BCIT can ensure that each student has the skills needed to perform effectively in a particular course or program.

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I got a U mark on my COMM 0015 test. What does this mean?

A U (unsatisfactory) mark in COMM 0015 means your mark was below 50. Thus, you did not meet the BCIT English entrance requirement. We strongly recommend you work on upgrading your skills for at least three months prior to retaking COMM 0015.

See the diagram and chart below.

If your score in COMM 0015 is high enough for a BCIT reading and writing upgrading course, you will be placed in COMM 0071, 0003, 0004, or 0005.

If your COMM 0015 English upgrading course placement is: You can register in this course:
COMM 0005
COMM 0005 English upgrading course level 4
**This course meets the English 12
reading and writing entrance
requirement for BCIT programs.
COMM 0004
COMM 0004 English upgrading course level 3
COMM 0003
COMM 0003 English upgrading course level 2
COMM 0071
COMM 0071 English upgrading course level 1
Too Low
No course available.
*We do not have a suitable English
oral skills upgrading course for you
based on your level of English.
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*A TOO LOW (unsuccessful) placement in COMM 0015 means your mark was below COMM 0071 Level 1 and you are therefore not eligible to take a BCIT reading and writing upgrading course at this time.


NOTE: Class size for BCIT English upgrading courses is limited and registration is on a first-come, first-served basis.

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What is the validity period for the COMM 0015 test results?

The validity period for the COMM 0015 test results varies for each program. Please contact Program Advising or Admissions for more information.

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Can I take the COMM 0015 test again? When?

Although BCIT has no formal waiting period between tests, we recommend students work on upgrading their skills for at least three months before trying again.
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Are there any other tests I can take to meet BCIT English entrance requirements?

Please see BCIT's English entrance requirements page for a complete list of acceptable alternative tests or contact Program Advising for more information.

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What is the English entrance requirement for a BCIT Full-time program?

BCIT's English entrance requirements are program specific. Please contact a Program Advisor or visit the program web page under the Program Entry section for more information.

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COMM 0033 Speaking and Listening Assessment FAQ

Why do I need to take COMM 0033?

To ensure you have the skills needed to succeed in various programs and levels of courses, you must demonstrate proficiency in all four language skills: reading, writing, speaking and listening. If you are applying for a full-time program and do not have the English speaking and listening prerequisites, this test will assess your speaking and listening levels.

To have your reading and writing skills assessed, please take COMM 0015.

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What is the cost for COMM 0033?

Visit the web page for COMM 0033 or contact Student Information and Enrolment Services for current test fees.

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How do I register for COMM 0033?

Go to the COMM 0033 web page or contact Student Information and Enrolment Services.

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When is COMM 0033 offered?

For the most current list of available test dates, visit the COMM 0033 web page or contact Student Information and Enrolment Services.

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What will be on the COMM 0033 test and how long is the test?

The entire COMM 0033 test is done on a computer in a BCIT computer lab. It has two parts:

  1. Speaking - This test consists of four speaking tasks. For each task, you will have one minute to prepare your response, and then you will be expected to speak for one minute into the microphone on your headset. Your responses will be recorded and accessed by trained evaluators.
    • Task 1: Reading a passage aloud.
    • Task 2: Describing a picture.
    • Task 3: Giving reasons or expressing an opinion.
    • Task 4: Describing a past event or experience.
  2. Listening - This test consists of 22 multiple-choice questions. You will be assessed on your ability to listen and understand one or more people speaking English. You will listen to a conversation or lecture, while looking at pictures of the speakers on the computer. The question is then read, followed by four answer choices. You will be asked to choose the best answer to the question that was asked. The suggested time for this section is 40 minutes.

The entire COMM 0033 test is approximately 1.5 hours long. Note: There are no sample test questions available.

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How can I prepare for the COMM 0033 test?

There are no sample test questions available for COMM 0033. COMM 0033 evaluates your overall English speaking and listening skills - and improving your overall speaking and listening skills is a long-term process. You need to do whatever it takes to improve your own skills. Check the Internet for ESL listening resources. You may also find it useful to practice recording yourself speaking: 1) reading short passages aloud with natural rhythm and 2) speaking continuously for one minute on a variety of topics.

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What should I bring to the COMM 0033 test?

You must bring one piece of valid photo identification (a BCIT myBCIT card, a driver's licence issued in Canada, a Permanent Resident card, a BC Identification card, or a passport) and payment receipt form to the test. Without a valid photo identification, you will not be permitted to take the test and your test fee will be forfeited. NOTE: Please arrive at least 10 minutes before the scheduled test time.

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Where do I park at BCIT?

Please see BCIT's parking information website.

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Where do I go for the COMM 0033 test?

To check the location of the test, visit the COMM 0033 web page or contact Student Information and Enrolment Services, then view the interactive Burnaby campus map. NOTE: Please arrive at least 5 minutes before the scheduled test time.

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What should I do if I can't attend the COMM 0033 session I registered for?

The COMM 0033 test fee is non-refundable. However, you can transfer your test fee to the next available test date, if your request for transfer is received by Student Information and Enrolment Services at least one business day BEFORE the date and time of your original test. A transfer fee will apply. No transfers will be granted after the test date (NO EXCEPTIONS).

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When will my COMM 0033 test results be available?

Test results are available via Desire2Learn (D2L) within seven (7) business days of completing the test.

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How do I find my COMM 0033 test results?

You must log into Desire2Learn (D2L) to view your marks and upgrading course placement level. Follow the step-by-step instructions below:

  1. Go to Desire2Learn (D2L).
  2. In the login area (top left of screen), enter your full student number (e.g. A00...) and your myBCIT password. Your password, by default, is your birthday (YYMMDD) unless you have changed it.
  3. On the welcom page, click on "Select a Course" (in the grey menu bar at the top of the screen) then select "COMM 0033".
  4. Click on "Grades" (in the blue menu bar at top right of screen). Once your test is graded, the screen will show letter grades (matching English 12 grade levels) for each of the test components, the final mark for the test, as well as reading and writing upgrading course placement level.

If your marks have not yet appeared, please try again later. Results will be posted within seven (7) business days of completing the test.

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I can't access my COMM 0033 results online. Can you tell me my results?

We cannot give results over the phone or in person. You are responsible for checking your own results online at Desire2Learn (D2L). If you have technical difficulties accessing your records online, please contact IT Services by phone at 604-412-7444 (Option 1) or email.

If your marks have not yet appeared, please try again later. Results will be posted within seven (7) business days of completing the test.

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Can I review my COMM 0033 test?

Like other such placement tests (e.g. the LPI, TOEFL), individual tests cannot be viewed by students after being completed. This is partly to ensure the test questions remain secure and valid. In addition, individual test review and feedback is not possible due to the large numbers of students who take the test.

Top

How is the COMM 0033 test marked?

The Listening section of the test is marked by computer. This computer score is converted into a BCIT grade: B, C+, C, C-, or U (unsatisfactory). Since "B" is the highest English 12 mark required by a BCIT program, the tests are marked only for English 12 B level and below.

The Speaking section of the test is marked independently by two trained markers from BCIT's Communication Department.

You must pass both sections of the test to receive a passing mark. If you pass both sections, your performance in each test section is assessed and compared to determine your skill level. To ensure the final mark is a reasonably accurate indication of your skill level, your final mark will be the lower of your two marks if there is a one-grade difference in the marks. If one of your marks is two or three grades above the other mark, your final mark will be one mark higher than your lowest mark.

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I got a U mark on my COMM 0033 test. What does this mean?

A U (unsatisfactory) mark in COMM 0033 means your mark was below 50. Thus, did not meet the BCIT English speaking and listening entrance requirement. We strongly recommend you work on upgrading your skills for at least three months prior to rewriting COMM 0033. Please see the diagram below.>

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I passed the COMM 0033 test but got below the mark required for my full-time program. What upgrading courses can I take at BCIT?

If you receive a 50 or 60 as your final mark, you will receive a placement for one of BCIT's speaking and listening upgrading courses: COMM 0029
(Level 1) or COMM 0030 (Level 2). Please see the chart below.

If your COMM 0033 mark is: You can register in this course:
60 COMM 0030 upgrading course level 1*
50 COMM 0029 upgrading course level 2
U (unsatisfactory) No course available.
We do not have a suitable English
oral skills upgrading course for you
based on your level of English.
*A mark in COMM 0030 Level 2 equal to or above the required entrance mark for your program will meet the speaking and listening entrance requirement.

NOTE: Class size for BCIT English upgrading courses is limited and registration is on a first-come, first-served basis.
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What is the validity period for the COMM 0033 test results?

The validity period for theCOMM 0033 test results varies for each program. Please check with Program Advising or Admissions for more information.

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Can I take the COMM 0033 test again? When?

Although BCIT has no formal waiting period between tests, we recommend students work on upgrading their skills for at least three months before trying again.

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Are there any other tests I can take to meet BCIT English entrance requirements?

Please see BCIT's Assessment and Testing page for a complete list fo acceptable alternative tests or contact Program Advising for more information.

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What is the English speaking and listening entrance requirement for a BCIT full-time program?

BCIT's English entrance requirements are program specific. Please contact a Program Advisor or visit the program web page under the Program Entry section for more information.

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