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Pima County Community College District Standard Practice Guide

SPG Title:  Basic Skills Assessment, Orientation and Advising
SPG Number: SPG-3114/AA
Effective Date:  5/2/00
Approval Date:  5/2/00
Review Date(s): 4/17/01, 2/7/12
Revision Date(s): 4/17/01, 2/7/12
Schedule for Review & Update:  Every three years
Unit Responsible for Review & Update:  AVC Student Services
Sponsoring Unit/Department: AVC Student Services
Regulation Title & No.: College Preparatory Programs, RG-3114/A
Board Policy Title & No.: Developmental Education/College Preparatory Programs, BP-3114
Legal Reference:
Cross Reference:General Education, BP-3117


Pima Community College is committed to providing accessible and successful educational experiences for students; therefore the College shall measure the entering competencies of its students prior to initial registration.  The College shall, through required assessment, advise students into recommended courses.  The purpose of this Standard Practice Guide is to specify the requirements of assessment and the recommended advising and orientation processes.


Pima Community College requires skill assessments in mathematics, reading and writing. Degree seeking students will not be able to register for courses until they have completed assessments or demonstrated College readiness.    Assessment data shall be used by college staff to assist the student with course selection.  Some programs and courses may require entrance examinations or competency levels and/or may have prerequisites.


Upon submitting the admission application, a registration hold will be placed on the student record preventing the ability to register; the hold will be released when the student completes the assessment process or demonstrates College readiness.  For more information, see SPG-3501/AA:  Admissions and Registration.


Using the College’s primary assessment tools, assessments will be administered on-site at the College and in contracted locations. A current list of assessment instruments for special applications shall be maintained and published by the Office of Student Services. For other assessments for certain disciplines, the College will use the placement cut scores recommended by the test developers based on their research.  A representative group of PCC faculty will review the assessment research and establish placement cut scores. Assessment results from tests administered at other locations will be accepted from students on a case by case basis to determine basic competencies in mathematics, reading and writing.


Pima Community College strongly recommends advising and orientation for all students after completing assessment.   Advising and orientation will be conveniently scheduled in multi-modalities to meet the needs of students.


Students are strongly encouraged to meet with an advisor on a regular basis to discuss:

  • Short and long term goals
  • Financial aid options
  • Major and semester course planning
  • Career planning


Prior to registering, all students are strongly encouraged to complete an Orientation. Orientation options include:

  • New Student Orientation (in person)
  • New Student Orientation (online)

Alternatively, students may choose to enroll in a designated College student success course(s), prior to taking additional classes, for a more in depth orientation.

Hyperlinks to Associated Documents