One of the keys to your academic success in college is to work with an advisor during orientation to help you make wise decisions about the courses you take, the major/minor you choose and your career options. Course registration specialists will use the information from the advising worksheet, placement tests, and additional material to build your fall schedule.

Placement tests are important tools that help faculty advisors and the Center for Student Success schedule appropriate courses for you. The tests are administered to place you in the appropriate course level. These tests do not exempt you from taking certain classes and you do not receive college credit based on your test scores.

How to know which placement tests to take

Placement tests are either based on questions you answer in your registration form or may be a condition of admittance at Calvin. You do not need to prepare in advance for the world language or calculus readiness placement tests. You will be notified in advance of all placement tests that you are required to take via email.

Calvin gives placement tests in:

  • World language (Chinese, French, German, Spanish)
    • Take the test online before you attend your PASSPORT session. 
    • You are exempt if:
      • English is your second language.
      • You have completed 4 years of one foreign language in high school, with a grade of C or better each semester.
    • Some professional academic programs such as accounting, education and nursing have a reduced foreign language requirement as part of their modified core curriculum. This modified core requires 2 years of one high school foreign language (C or better each semester) or one year at the college level. See the full list of professional programs with modified core requirements. If you have specific questions, contact the Center of Student Success, 616.526.6155
  • Calculus (Calculus is a core course, but it is only required for certain majors)
    Students whose program requires calculus will take this test to place them in the appropriate level. If you have taken AP Calculus, see AP credit information below.
  • Math and written rhetoric assessment
    Required if you are an Access Scholar and some conditionally admitted students. You will be notified if you are required to participate in these placement tests.
  • Music Theory placement test
    Required for music majors and minors. More information.

Please check the AP credit information fpr additional information

Honors program

Students who are eligible for Calvin’s Honors Program (ACT score 29+ / SAT 1290+) will be scheduled to meet with the Honors Program leaders at Passport to receive information about the program in general as well as the fall honors courses which they may request when they meet with their advisor on day two. For more information see the Honors Program web site.

Advising and class registration

During PASSPORT you will have a group advising meeting with students in similar areas of study where you will learn about Calvin’s core curriculum requirements.

You will also have an individual advising appointment with a faculty member who will assist you in reviewing a list of classes for the fall semester. A course registration specialist will create your fall semester schedule in early August (even if you are attending Passport V in late August). This is the only time in your Calvin career that you will not need to register for your classes—we do it for you!

Attending an earlier PASSPORT session will not increase your chances of being registered for a desired course.

Music Auditions

Calvin’s Music Department offers many instrumental and vocal opportunities. If you are interested in auditioning, complete the music auditions portion of the registration form. We will schedule an audition for you during your PASSPORT session. If you have specific questions about the auditions, contact 616-526-6253 or go to the audition Web page.

Disability Services

Please contact the Center for Student Success at 616-526-6155 if interested in scheduling an appointment with a disability coordinator or learning more about resources at Calvin College.

Attending an earlier PASSPORT session will not increase your chances of being registered for a desired course. So please choose the Passport orientation that will best fits your schedule.Learn more about course registration, advising and placement tests here!