TEXAS ACADEMIC SKILLS PROGRAM (TASP)

 

          The Texas Academic Skills Program (TASP) test is designed to provide information about the reading, mathematics, and writing skills of each student entering a Texas public college or university.  Mandated by House Bill 2182, which was passed by the Texas Legislature in the spring of 1987, the test was developed in response to growing evidence in Texas and other states that many college students lack some of these basic academic skills.

 

          To assist students in public colleges and universities to obtain the skills identified by  Texas educators as being important for entering college students, the Legislature also mandated that institutions develop and

implement appropriate developmental courses and/or tutorial programs and  advisory support activities.   An improved level of skills will  enhance the student's ability to successfully complete a college level course of study.

 

          To pass the TASP test, you must pass all three sections:  reading, mathematics, and writing.  You may take one, two, or three sections at a given test administration.  If you choose not to take one or more sections of the test, you will be required to participate in developmental courses.  Once you pass a section of the test, you do not have to take the section again.  If you do not pass one or more sections, you may register again and take only the section(s) of the test you have not passed.  You must participate in a developmental program for those sections of the test that you have not passed. 

 

          Students required to take the TASP test may not graduate from a certificate program that has nine or more semester credit hours of general education courses, of a Level II Certificate Program, an associate degree program, or a baccalaureate degree program, until they have passed all sections of the test.

 

          The student must pass all sections of the TASP test to enroll in upper-division courses where completion of such courses would give you 60 or more college-level semester credit hours, or equivalent. 

 

          High school students who plan to enroll in dual-credit classes, or to be concurrently enrolled must have TASP test scores prior to beginning college-level classes and must pass the section that is relevant to the class.

 

 

Who Must Take The TASP Test?

 

You must take the TASP test if any one of the following conditions apply to you.

 

      1.       You are entering a Texas public institution of higher education (i.e., a college, university, or technical institute) as a full-time or part-time student in a Level II certificate program, an associate or baccalaureate degree program.

      2.       You are a full-time or part-time teacher education student in either a public or private institution in Texas.

      3.       You are a student transferring from outside Texas or from a private Texas college or university.

      4.       You are a student seeking admission to a Texas upper-level institution or program that requires the TASP test as a condition of admission.

 

 

Passing Scores for TASP

 

          Reading - 230

          Math      - 230

          Writing  - 220

 

 

Who is Exempt From Taking The TASP?

 

You are exempt from the TASP test if any one of the following conditions apply to you:

 

      1.       You received credit for at least three semester hours of college-level work prior to the fall of 1989.

      2.       You are blind3 and received credit for at least three semester credit hours of college-level work prior to fall 1995.

      3.       You are deaf[5] and you received credit for at least three semester credit hours of college-level work prior to fall 1995.  (If you are a totally deaf teacher education student, contact your advisor or Texas Education Agency (TDD) at (512) 469-3000 for exemption information).

      4.       You had high scores on ACT, SAT, or TAAS as defined by the Coordinating Board.

 

ACT EXEMPTION:  Composite score of 23 with a 19 minimum of the Math and English tests each.  Scores can be no more than five years old and must be in one setting.

 

SAT EXEMPTION:  April 1995 & thereafter:  Combines verbal and mathematics score of 1070 with a minimum of 500 on both the verbal and mathematics tests.  Prior to April 1995 --  combines verbal and mathematics score of 970, with a minimum of 420 on the verbal and 470 on the mathematics test.  Scores can be no more than five years old and must be in one setting.

 

TAAS EXEMPTION:  Minimum scale score of 1770 on writing test and a Texas Learning Index (TLI) of 86 on the math test and 89 on the reading test.  Scores can be no more than three years old and must be in one setting.  Example: Minimum scale score of 1770 on writing test and a Texas Learning Index (TLI) of 86 on the math test and 89 on the reading test.  Scores can be no more than three years old and must be in one setting or first attempt on each section of the test.

 

HIGH SCHOOL GRADE POINT AVERAGE EXEMPTION: Students are exempt from TASP requirements who complete the “Recommended or Distinguished” high school program, or the equivalent, with 3.5 GPA (includes out-of-state students).  The exemption applies only if student enrolls within two years of graduation from high school.

 

      5.       Under Senate Bill 1491 of the 74th Texas Legislature, an individual 55 years of age or older on the first day of the term, who is not seeking a certificate or degree from a Texas public institution of higher education, is exempt.

 

6.           Students enrolled in a private or out-of-state institution of higher education who wish to attend SWTJC for one long semester only (or two summer sessions) may temporarily enroll without the TASP provided they have been enrolled at the private or out-of-state institution the immediate preceding semester.

 

 

Students Who Earn a "B" or Better in Freshmen-level Credit Courses

 

          A student who initially fails one or more sections of the TASP Test must successfully complete the developmental program(s) prescribed by SWTJC and must then retake the appropriate sections of the TASP Test.  A student who fails the retake may then be allowed to take, or apply for these purposes, a collegiate level course approved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.  Students attempting such courses are not required to be concurrently enrolled in a developmental activity related to that portion of the test.  A student who earns a grade of "B" (3.0 on a 4.0 scale) or better in such a course in the skill area in which a deficit was assessed shall not be required to achieve the minimum passing standard on the TASP Test and shall not be prohibited from graduating or continuing with his/her program of study.

 

The following are the freshmen-level credit courses, identified by their Common Course Numbers:

 

      1.      Writing

                a.             ENGL 1301; or

                b.             ENGL 1302

      2.       Reading

                a.             HIST 1301, 1302 (U.S. History);

                b.             ENGL 2322, 2323 (British Literature);

                c.             ENGL 2332, 2333 (World Literature I & II);

                d.             ENGL 2327, 2328 (American Literature I & II);

                e.             PSYCH 2301 (General Psychology); or

                f.              GOVT 2301, 2302 (American Government)

      3.       Mathematics

                a.             MATH 1314 (College Algebra); or

                b.             MATH 1316 (Plane Trigonometry)

                c.             MATH 1332  (Math for Liberal Arts I)

 

          Students enrolling at Southwest Texas Junior College who have failed one or more sections of the TASP Test, completed the prescribed developmental education program to the satisfaction of the institution, retaken and failed sections of the TASP Test following the completion of developmental education, but who have previously earned or subsequently earn a grade of "B" or better in an appropriate course, may use the course to fulfill the TASP requirements.  While a student may take courses from the list at any time appropriate to an academic program, grades of "B" or better in such courses may not be used to satisfy the TASP requirements until the above sequence has been completed.  A "B" must be earned in an appropriate course before a student may apply for this standard.

                   

          TASP state policies do not apply to the following SWTJC  technical certificate programs:    Child Development, Cosmetology, and Office Systems Technology.

 

          Southwest Texas Junior College is an official TASP test site.  The TASP Certification Form requires registration approximately one month in advance and carries a $39 fee that must be paid by the student.  Some state financial assistance will be available depending upon the student's financial need.  Official tests will be administered at SWTJC and over one-hundred other institutions on specific dates as identified in the TASP Test Registration Bulletin.  TASP Test Registration Bulletins can be picked up at the Testing Center,  the Registrar's Office or at the Student Support Services office.


 

[5]This exemption for deaf or blind students does not apply to teacher education candidates, who are governed by a different provision of Texas law.