COMPASS/ESL

®

Sample Test Questions— A Guide for Students and Parents Mathematics
College Algebra Geometry Trigonometry

An ACT Program for Educational Planning

We hope you benefit from these sample questions. you will answer just a few questions and you won’t receive a real test score. they do not produce a test score. There is an answer key at the end.Note to Students Welcome to the COMPASS Sample Mathematics Test! You are about to look at some sample test questions as you prepare to take the actual COMPASS test. After you complete the test. The answer key follows the sample questions. Since this is a practice exercise. students answer more questions on the actual test. The examples in this booklet are similar to the kinds of test questions you are likely to see when you take the actual COMPASS test. Once you are ready to take the actual COMPASS test. . you can get a score report to help you make good choices when you register for college classes. you may work at your own pace. and we wish you success as you pursue your education and career goals! Note to Parents The test questions in this sample set are similar to the kinds of test questions your son or daughter will encounter when they take the actual COMPASS test. The aim of this booklet is to give a sense of the kinds of questions examinees will face and their level of difficulty. Since these questions are only for practice. you need to know that the test is computer delivered and untimed— that is.

org/aap/taking/calculator. An analysis item requires students to demonstrate a conceptual understanding of the principles and relationships relevant to particular mathematical operations. COMPASS includes mathematics items of three general levels of cognitive complexity: basic skills. which are the same for COMPASS and the ACT Assessment. Students are permitted to use calculators on all current Windows® and Internet versions of COMPASS Mathematics Tests.html © 2004 ACT. geometry. college algebra. application. however. and analysis. These specifications are updated periodically and can be found at ACT’s website at http://www. and trigonometry. algebra. A basic skills item can be solved by performing a sequence of basic operations. Inc. An application item involves applying sequences of basic operations to novel settings or in complex ways. . All rights reserved. To ensure variety in the content and complexity of items within each domain. Items in each of the content domains sample extensively from these three cognitive levels.COMPASS Mathematics Tests The COMPASS Mathematics Tests are organized around five principal content domains: numerical skills/prealgebra. meet ACT’s specifications. Calculators must.act.

etc. The majority of items come from the following content areas: Functions Exponents Complex Numbers Arithmetic and Geometric Sequences and Series Matrices (basic operations. etc. area. adjacent. arcs.) Circles (perimeter. © 2004 ACT.) Three-dimensional concepts Hybrid (composite) shapes Sample items for each of these categories are presented later in this section. Inc. Geometry. equations. vertical. . Pythagorean theorem. etc. and determinants) Sample items for each of these categories are presented later in this section.) Rectangles (perimeter. Trigonometry Placement Test The primary content areas assessed by the Trigonometry Placement Test include: Trigonometric functions and identities Right-triangle trigonometry Trigonometric equations and inequalities Graphs of trigonometric functions Special angles (multiples of 30 and 45 degrees) Sample items for each of these categories are presented later in this section. etc.College Algebra. area. complementary. Geometry Placement Test Primary content areas included in the Geometry Placement Test include: Triangles (perimeter.) Angles (supplementary. and Trigonometry Placement Tests College Algebra Placement Test Items in the College Algebra Test focus on algebra knowledge and skills in a variety of content areas. All rights reserved. area.

© 2004 ACT. C. E. 51 D. What is the maximum output of refined material. –1 8 0 1 16 1 8 1 2 A manufacturing company processes raw ore. for this time period? A. in tons. D. f (x) and g(x). 1 . 1. D. What is the next term in the geometric sequence 16. Inc. 8 B. 63 E.College Algebra Placement Test Sample Items College Algebra 1. … ? 4 A. –4. –5 –3 –1 2 7 f (x) 7 –5 3 2 x –2 1 2 3 g(x) 3 –1 –3 –5 3. All rights reserved. The number of tons of refined material the company can produce during t days using Process A is A(t) = t2 + 2t and using Process B is B(t) = 10t. 10 C. 2. C. What is the value of g(f (3)) ? x –5 –2 1 3 A. 70 For the 2 functions. E. B. B. tables of values are shown below. The company has only 7 days to process ore and must choose 1 of the processes. – 1 .

Any positive real number C. x g(x) = c g(x) = x – c g(x) = logcx 7. y. If f (x) = 2x. D. B. E. Inc. D. C. then A – B = ?  6 0  −6 0      A. 0 only © 2004 ACT. All rights reserved. g(x) = cx B. E. E.College Algebra Placement Test Sample Items 4. 1 only E. which of the following expressions is equivalent 1 2 5 to x 2 y 3 z 6 ? A. 0 and 1 only D. Any real number B. If A =  2 −4  and B =  −2 4 . D. For positive real numbers x. which of these 5 functions yields the greatest value for f (g(x)). 0 0 0 0   1 0   0 1    0 −8  0 0    −4 0   −12 0     4 −8  12 0    6. for all x>1? A. g(x) = c x C. each denoted g(x) and each involving a real number constant c > 1. Listed below are 5 functions. C. If the function f satisfies the equation f (x + y) = f(x) + f(y) for every pair of real numbers x and y. and z. 2 . B. what are the possible values of f (0) ? A. 3 6 6 6 11 xy 2 z 3 xy 2 z 5 x3 y 2 z 5 x3 y 4 z 5 xy 2 z 5 5.

the last term is 136. 10. 70 3 3. 43 3. Inc. what are the first 3 terms? A. –i C. the terms of the series are equally spread out. If the first term in an arithmetic series is 3. 17 3. All rights reserved. E. 69 1 . © 2004 ACT. and the sum is 1. The imaginary number i is defined such that i2 = –1. 36 1 . D. What does i + i2 + i3 + L + i 23 equal? A. 3. i B. C. 23. 1 In an arithmetic series. 3 .College Algebra Placement Test Sample Items 8. consecutive terms are 4 apart. 1. B.251 9. 0 E. 136 2 3. 139. For example. –1 D. in 1 + 5 + 9 + 13 + 17.390.

Inc.College Algebra Placement Test Sample Items Correct Answers for Sample College Algebra Items Item # 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Correct Answer C E B D E A E C A Content Category Arithmetic and Geometric Sequences and Series Functions Functions Exponents Matrices (basic operations. All rights reserved. 4 . and determinants) Functions Functions Complex Numbers Arithmetic and Geometric Sequences and Series © 2004 ACT. equations.

Which of the following lists has 3 angles that are all equal in measure? t a b c d e m n A. ∠c. C. and line t is a transversal crossing both m and n. Inc. ∠e 2. 140° E. ∠b. B. ∠d ∠a. and D are collinear. As shown in the figure below. ∆ABC is isosceles with the length of AB equal to the length of AC. ∠d ∠a. ∠c. C.Geometry Placement Test Sample Items Geometry 1. 80° C. ∠c. D. line m is parallel to line n. E. ∠e ∠b. All rights reserved. ∠d ∠b. What is the measure of ∠ACD ? A 40° B C D A. 70° B. In the figure below. 5 . ∠a. 110° D. The measure of ∠A is 40° and points B. 160° © 2004 ACT. ∠c.

C. Consecutive fence posts are 10 feet apart except for the 1 diagonal section. What is the length. 5 7 E. 12 D. How many feet in length are each of the sides of the new square-shaped garden? A. 5 3 3 3+ 5 3 5 3 6 © 2004 ACT. D. Which of the following statements best describes P. in feet? N W S E pasture A. 7 B. The diagram below shows a pasture which is fenced in. the perimeter of the pasture.Geometry Placement Test Sample Items 3. In the figure below. The length of AB is 6 units and the length of CB is 3 units. in units. D. B. All but 1 section of fence run straight north-south or east-west. The garden was changed into a square design with the same area as the original rectangular-shaped garden. 6 . Inc. A person had a rectangular-shaped garden with sides of lengths 16 feet and 9 feet. B. of AC ? A 6 C 3 B A. All rights reserved. E. 16 5. E. C. 9 C. ∆ABC is a right triangle. P > 210 P = 210 P < 210 P > 230 P = 240 4.

B. Inc. The smaller circle passes through the center of the larger circle and the length of AB is 5 units. in square units. 180 7. 12 8. 10 D. 25π C. of the larger circle will remain? π 36 1 5 A 5 B A. A rectangular box with a base 2 inches by 6 inches is 10 inches tall and holds 12 ounces of breakfast cereal. how much of the area. 9 C. All rights reserved. 10π B.) A. the circle centered at B is internally tangent to the circle centered at A. 100π E.Geometry Placement Test Sample Items 6. 300π © 2004 ACT. 36 π E. how many meters in length is the radius of the circle? 30° 6 A. π D. If the smaller circle is cut out of the larger circle. 7 . The manufacturer wants to use a new box with a base 3 inches by 5 inches. How many inches tall should the new box be in order to hold exactly the same volume as the original box? (Note: The volume of a rectangular box may be calculated by multiplying the area of the base by the height of the box. as is illustrated below. 75π D. If a central angle of measure 30° is subtended by a circular arc of length 6 meters. 11 E. C. 8 B. In the figure below.

What is the area.5 60 6 149 120 © 2004 ACT. and lengths are given in units. 65 E. E. AB and CD are parallel. What is the area. in square units. In the figure below. 7. All rights reserved.8 D.0 B.6 E. 29 47. B. 10. 64 D. In the figure below. 5. 7. D. in units. A 6-foot spruce tree is planted 15 feet from a lighted streetlight whose lamp is 18 feet above the ground. C.Geometry Placement Test Sample Items 9. of trapezoid ABCD ? A 5 D 4 10 B 5 C A.0 11. the lengths of DE . 104 10. 52 C. 36 B. Inc. 9. EF . and FG are given. of ∆DEG ? G 10 D 12 E 7 F A.5 C. in square units. 8 . How many feet long is the shadow of that tree? 18 6 15 ? A.

Geometry Placement Test Sample Items Correct Answers for Sample Geometry Items Item Number 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Correct Answer A C A C B D A C B B C Content Category Special Angles Isosceles Triangles Perimeter of Hybrid Shapes Area of Rectangles Triangles Arc of a Circle Three-Dimensional Concepts Area of a Circle Area of a Trapezoid Similar Triangles Area of a Triangle © 2004 ACT. 9 . Inc. All rights reserved.

23 C. ∠A measures 60°. If sin α = A.5. All rights reserved. cos 60° ≈ 0.61 4. sin 60° ≈ 0. 4. 5 12 7 13 12 5 17 13 60 13 and cos α = 5 . In the right triangle shown below. to the nearest hundredth of a unit? B 8 60° A C A. If 0° < x° < 90° and sin x = A. 33 E.00 4. Approximately how many units long is BC . 10 . the length of AB is 8 units. B. 13 2. 2 D. D. 13 then tan α = ? 3.23 12 . B. 1 2 1 2 . Inc.93 9. E. C. and tan 60° ≈ 1.Trigonometry Placement Test Sample Items Trigonometry 1.80 6. E.73. then cos x = ? B.866. 2 3 3 ©2004 by ACT. C. D.

π π C. 52 ©2004 by ACT. If the distance between the radio antenna and the library is 1. π 4 B. 2π π E. C. 32 D. Inc.3 cos57° 1.3 tan 57° D.3 sin 57° 1. 11 . how many miles high is the balloon? balloon 57° ? antenna 1. 1. From a hot air balloon.3 miles. 1. 1. What is the smallest positive value for x where y = sin 2x reaches its maximum? A. B. All rights reserved.3 tan 57° 5.3 miles library A. the angle between a radio antenna straight below and the base of the library downtown is 57°.Trigonometry Placement Test Sample Items 4.3 sin 57° E. as shown below.

Trigonometry Placement Test Sample Items 6. 12 5 13 12 12 13 5 12 5 13 ©2004 by ACT. All rights reserved. Inc. One of the graphs below is that of y = A sin θ for θ between 0 and 6. y 1 –1 1 2 3 4 5 6 x 7. C. D. Which one? A. y 3 2 1 –1 –2 –3 1 2 3 4 5 6 x B. 12 . What is the tangent of ∠A ? A 13 C 12 B A. y 1 –1 1 2 3 4 5 6 x E. the length of AB is 13 units and the length of CB is 12 units. where A is a constant. E. y 1 –1 1 2 3 4 5 6 x D. B.28 radians. y 4 3 2 1 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 x C. In the right triangle below.

13 . Inc.Trigonometry Placement Test Sample Items Correct Answers for Sample Trigonometry Items Item Number 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Correct Answer D C B C A A A Content Category Right Triangles Functions and Identities Special Angles Right Triangles Special Angles Graphs of Functions Right Triangle ©2004 by ACT. All rights reserved.