The colleges of the Alamo Colleges District will be serving students remotely beginning March 23 due to COVID-19, the Coronavirus. Please be aware that in-person visits at all of our locations are temporarily suspended. You may communicate with our department via email, firstname.lastname@example.org.
The TSI Assessment is now available to be taken from home. Click here for information on taking the TSI from Home.
Thank you for your understanding and patience as we transition to serve you remotely!
Stay on Track to a Degree with the No Cost Testing
The Alamo Colleges is offering the Texas Success Initiative (TSI) test, which usually costs $32, at no cost between May 1 and June 20, 2020.
The Texas Success Initiative (TSI) is a state-required assessment test to determine college readiness in reading, writing, and math. All first-time college students must take the TSI test before enrolling in classes unless you are exempt.
This is a $130,000 investment that will benefit nearly 5,000 students.
Who is eligible for No Cost Testing?
Students who intend to enroll in Summer 2020 or Fall 2020.
Dual credit, academies, ECHS or other high school programs do not qualify for no cost testing.
Will No Cost Testing be available for future terms?
How will students verify eligibility?
Students should check with the Testing Center at the college to determine if they are eligible for no cost testing.
The Texas Success Initiative (TSI) Assessment is a state mandated placement exam, used to assess a student's proficiency in Writing, Reading, and Mathematics. For more detailed information on TSI, please visit The Higher Education Coordinating Board of Texas website.
TSI Assessment Scores
The TSI Assessment College Level Placement Scores:
TSI Writing Placement and Essay
340+ and 4+
<340, ABE 4+ and 5+
What happens after taking the TSI Assessment?
If your scores meet the "College Level" placement listed above
First Time in College Students (FTIC)
- If you have fulfilled all other enrollment requirements, you can now sign up for New Student Orientation by visiting our First Time in College Students page.
- If you have fulfilled all other enrollment requirements, you can now sign up for Transfer Student Orientation by visiting our Transfer Students page.
If your scores are below the "College Level" placement listed above
- Depending on which areas you tested low in, you will be required to register for a refresher in the corresponding subject. A refresher is a 4-day long course, offered free of charge, and must be completed prior to registration.
- You will meet with our Readiness Center. This advising center specializes in post-assessment advising and will guide you through the refresher registration process and your next steps. Our Readiness Center can be reached at 210-486-4753 and 210-486-4751.
TSI Already Taken:
If you have taken the TSI Assessment within the last 5 years, you do not have to re-test. If you tested at a location other than an Alamo College, our office will need a copy of your TSI scores. Our Office can typically locate TSI scores by pulling from a database, to do this you will need to submit a TSI Cross Institutional Reporting Form - found under the "TSI Score Retrieval" Tab above.
Exemption by Exam:
If you have taken one of the following exams within the last 5 years and received the corresponding scores + additional requirements
|19+||19+||Composite score MUST be 23+|
SAT (Taken prior to March 2016)
|500+||500+||Combined Critical Reading & Math scores MUST equal to 1070+|
SAT (Taken on or after March 2016)
|Reading & Writing||Math|
Non-test score Exemptions:
- Graduated with an associate degree or higher from regionally accredited higher education institution
- Documented to be College Ready or Exempted for respective area of the TSI Assessment on official transcript from another Texas Public College or University
- Veteran who has separated from the Military on or after August 1, 1990 under honorable conditions
- Transfer coursework that is determined to be equivalent to the following Northwest Vista College courses with a grade of C or higher for the respective part of the TSI Assessment. See courses below:
|INRW 0420||READ 0303||MATH 0303|
|ENGL 0301||INRW 0420||MATH 0320|
|ENGL 1301||ENGL 1301||MATH 1314|
|ENGL 1302||ENGL 1302||MATH 1324|
|ENGL 2322||MATH 1332|
|ENGL 2323||MATH 1333|
|ENGL 2327||MATH 1350|
|ENGL 2328||MATH 1351|
|HIST 1301||MATH 1414|
|HIST 1302||MATH 1442|
|PSYC 2301||MATH 2412|
The following items may waive a student from the TSI Assessment for a period of time. Once a waiver expires, a student may be required to take the TSI.
- Complete an identified High School College Preparatory Course with a final grade of 75 or higher (This only applies to high schools that have an agreement with Northwest Vista College)
- Course + grade of 75 or higher MUST be printed onto Official Final high school transcript.
- Enroll no later than 2 years after graduation
- Must attempt respective college level course within 1 year of initial enrollment
- Active Duty Military (member of the Reserves must show proof of 3 years of service prior to enrollment)
- Certificate Program that is one year or less (42 or fewer semester hours); A diagnostic exam through the TSI Assessment is required in accordance to Alamo College's requirement
TSI Assessment Fees:
$32 for full exam
$12 per individual portion (if full exam is not required)
Items that must be completed prior to taking the TSI:
- An Active Application must be on file
- Log into ACES
- Activate AlamoNAVIGATE tool (found under "Start Here" tab)
- Complete GoFAARR and Test Prep Modules (found under "Start Here" tab and also within AlamoNAVIGATE)
*Note: We do not have the ability to test non-prospective students. All students testing in our office must have applied to an Alamo College. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you.
Once the above listed items are complete, you may come in to take the TSI exam. Our hours and appointment times can be found here. If our Hours do not work with your schedule, we now also offer the option for students to take the TSI from Home through a third-party proctoring service called Examity. Please visit our TSI from Home page for more info.
On the Day of Testing:
When you arrive to take the TSI assessment the following items will be required:
- Valid Photo ID
- Payment (cash/card/check/moneyorder) - or - Proof of payment
The following unapproved items will not be allowed into the test room
- cell phones/other electronic devices
Please be advised to leave these items in a safe place while testing. We offer on a first-come, first-served basis, coin return lockers (You will need a quarter to use these lockers, the quarter will be returned to you after use). The Testing staff is not responsible for holding items and you will not be allowed to test with any unapproved items in the test room.
The TSI Assessment may be re-taken the next available test day. It is strongly recommended to review preparation materials. The score report you receive at the end of the test may provide diagnostic information on areas of strength and development. This information may help in preparation for a re-test.
If you have taken the TSI Assessment within the last 5 years at a testing site outside of the Alamo Colleges, you may complete an online release form that will allow our office to import your scores. The information needed in order to complete this form is as follows:
- Full Name
- Student (Banner) ID
- Date of Birth
- Name/type of Testing Location
- Your Alamo Colleges email address
Please be aware that there is a possibility that we will not be able to locate your TSI scores. If this occurs, we will contact you via email to let you know and discuss further options.