Press Release

 Record Number of 11th Graders Test Their College Readiness




Results of CSU Early Assessment Program help students identify areas to focus on during senior year

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Record Number of 11th Graders Test Their College Readiness

(August 19, 2009) - A record number of public high school juniors tested their proficiency in English and mathematics through the California State University Early Assessment Program (EAP) in 2009. By volunteering to take the EAP test, students can find out if they are on track for college entry in 2010 without the need to attend remedial classes.

For the fourth consecutive year, results reflect an increase in the overall number of students tested.  Of the 466,303 11th graders who took the California Standards Test (CST) in spring 2009, a record 369,441 (79 percent) also took one or both of CSU’s Early Assessment tests.  Since the spring 2006 administration, the number of EAP test-takers grew by more than 50,000, an increase twice the growth in 11th graders.

One of the most significant results of this year\'s EAP was the increase in the students eligible to take the math assessment, from 42 percent of 11th graders in 2006 to 47 percent in 2009. In order to take the math portion of the EAP, students need to have progressed to Algebra II by their junior year. In 2009, nearly 22,000 more students qualified and took the EAP in math than did so last year.

"It is encouraging that greater numbers of students are taking advantage of the EAP to continue along the path towards a college education," said Jack O’Connell, State Superintendent of Public Instruction. "Students in our schools today must prepare to compete in an increasingly competitive global economy. Getting a college education is an important part of preparing for that future. I am pleased that more students are taking the EAP in order to identify their college readiness. I urge our schools to provide and guide all students towards the rigorous academic courses that will help prepare them for success in both college and the workforce."

Students taking the EAP are asked to write an essay for the English exam and answer 15 additional questions in both the English and math sections.

"The EAP is the push that many students need to make the best use of their senior year," said CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed. "If students can challenge themselves in high school and come to college prepared, they are much more likely to succeed at the university campus and earn a degree."

Students admitted to the CSU as first-time freshmen must demonstrate they are ready for college English and mathematics. They can meet this requirement in several ways, including showing proficiency in the EAP test, passing the CSU’s placement test, or by obtaining a qualifying score on the SAT or ACT test.

About 60 percent of the first-time freshmen enrolling at the CSU each year do not show proficiency in these assessments, even though they have earned at least a B in the required college preparatory curriculum. As a result, many students must attend remedial classes, which do not count for college credit and add cost and time to earning a degree.

EAP Results for English
The 2009 EAP results show that of 366,952 students taking the EAP English test (82 percent of all 11th graders eligible to take the CST in English) 59,367 (16 percent) attained college-level proficiency early, at the end of 11th grade. This is a slight percentage increase over the results in 2006 and a slight decrease from 2008.

EAP Results for Math

Math proficiency, which had held steady as a percentage for the last three years, increased in 2009. Of 169,473 students who took the EAP math test this year (77 percent of those eligible to take it), 22,246 (13 percent) attained college-level proficiency at the end of the 11th grade.

An additional 74,464 (44 percent) were judged conditionally proficient, which means that they must take mathematics in 12th grade in order to be exempt from taking a remedial mathematics class at the CSU. The CSU, however, encourages all high school seniors to complete a fourth year of math to keep their skills current.

Statewide EAP Results -- Last Four Years

  2006 2007 2008 2009
Tested 312,167 342,348 352,943 366,952
Proficient 48,072 (15%) 55,206 (16%) 60,392 (17%) 59,367 (16%)
Tested 137,067 141,648 147,885 169,473
Proficient 74,942 (55%) 77,870 (55%) 82,102 (55%) 96,710 (57%)



About the California State University
The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 450,000 students and 46,000 faculty and staff. Since the system was created in 1961, it has awarded nearly 2.5 million degrees, about 90,000 annually. Its mission is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever-changing needs of the people of California. With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California.