Fall 2024 Assessment Day (Last updated 7/11/24)

All first-year students entering JMU in Fall 2024 must complete a series of assessments (e.g., multiple-choice tests, surveys, and essays) to fulfill their Assessment Day requirement. Assessments can be completed remotely between 8/5/24 and 8/15/24 and should take no more than 120 minutes. Instructions for how to access the assessments will be sent to your email account by 9AM 8/5/24 from All assessments must be completed by 5PM on 8/15/24 to avoid an enrollment hold. Results are used to inform program improvements and your performance will not impact your university record, grades, or placement into program/courses.

To find out more about Assessment Day, including what kind of assessments are administered and how results are used, please refer to the FAQs below or watch this short video. For further information, email or call 540-568-7169. We are available to assist you from 9AM-5PM Eastern Standard Time (EST).



If you have received an email from the Center for Assessment and Research Studies ( alerting you of your required participation in Assessment Day, then your participation is required. There are two Assessment Days each year: a Fall Assessment Day in August and a Spring Assessment Day in February. Incoming freshmen are required to participate in the Fall Assessment Day and students (even transfer students) that have earned between 45 and 70 credits prior to the spring semester are required to participate in the Spring Assessment Day. You cannot test out of these assessments. If you are uncertain about whether you must participate, contact the Center for Assessment and Research Studies ( Unless you have been informed otherwise by us, if you are required to participate and fail to do so, a hold will be placed on your record

Tips for preparing to take your tests are below.

  • You will need to use a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet with a keyboard and You may also want headphones, as you will be watching videos. Mobile phones are not allowed.
  • You will need to use an internet browser during testing, so make sure you have a strong, stable internet connection.
  • Access to the assessments will require the use of Duo Two Factor Authentication, so be sure to have that set up in advance.
  • You will need to complete your assessments in a comfortable and quiet space where you can work without interruptions.
  • There is no need to study; JMU simply wants to know what you know, think, and can do at the time of testing. We do not expect you to have mastered any or all the material, we just ask that you try your best.

Generally, the completion of all assessments should take no more than 120 minutes. All assessments will need to be completed in one sitting.

Most assessments can be completed in any computer lab on campus. Be sure to bring your JMU JACard, as many labs will require you to swipe your card in order to enter. The completion of all assessments should take about 120 minutes. Therefore, you must allow yourself enough time to complete the assessments before the lab closes for the day.

Expect to complete three to five assessments associated with your general education coursework and JMU experiences. A variety of assessments are administered. For example, you might be asked to complete assessments in quantitative and scientific reasoning, information literacy, critical thinking, cultural competency, environmental stewardship, communication, global history, American history, arts, humanities, or health and wellness. You might also be asked to respond to questions pertaining to your attitudes, values, perceptions, or behaviors. Not all students receive the same assessments. JMU uses the information you provide on Assessment Day to improve programs on campus that serve a large number of undergraduate students. Therefore, your efforts on Assessment Day will help improve the JMU student experience and make JMU a better university.

Although it may be tempting to use the internet or other resources to help answer questions, we ask that you do not do so because the purpose of these assessments is to understand what JMU students know at this point in time (not what JMU students can find out on the internet at this point in time). Furthermore, Assessment Day scores do not affect your academic record in any way, so there is no reason to cheat. In fact, cheating would be a violation of the Honor Code and a disservice to you and other JMU students as it would hinder JMU from making appropriate programmatic changes in response to Assessment Day results. We simply ask that you work independently and try your best.

The information collected on Assessment Day is used in a variety of ways. First, assessment results are shared with faculty committees and administrators across the campus. The results are used to inform program changes and improvements, which in turn lead to a higher quality of education for all JMU students. Second, the assessments you will take on Assessment Day enable JMU to answer important questions being asked by students, parents, employers, and legislators about what a college degree is worth. Third, the Commonwealth of Virginia mandates that all state universities assess student learning to ensure quality.

Assessment Day is important to you because it helps to ensure that you are receiving the highest quality education and makes the quality of your education known to external groups (e.g., graduate schools, employers). These assessments help us show stakeholders what being a JMU graduate means. By giving your best effort on these assessments, you are helping to preserve the reputation of JMU, which, in turn, will help you get into a graduate program or get a job in the future.

The table below contains instructions for students needing various types of testing accommodations on Assessment Day. Although you do not need to be registered with the Office of Disability Services (ODS) to receive these accommodations, we highly suggest you register with ODS early in your academic career by calling 540-568-6705, by emailing, or by visiting the Student Success Center, Suite 1202. Please contact the Center for Assessment and Research Studies ( with any questions or concerns.



Extended time

Students can take as much time as needed when taking the assessments remotely. Suggested times are only provided to help students plan how much time it might take them to complete each assessment. Being mindful of the deadline, we encourage students to take as much as they need. Any additional questions about time for the assessments can be directed to

Enlarged computer screen, Alternative Formats, Text-to-Speech or other Assistive Technology

For assistance with these accommodations, please contact the Office of Disability Services (ODS) by emailing or by calling 540-568-6705. Please contact ODS at least two weeks prior to the Assessment Day requirement deadline to make arrangements.

Transfer students provide an invaluable resource for comparing JMU’s award winning general education program to other general education programs across the country. By participating in Assessment Day, transfer students are helping to identify areas of strength and weakness in JMU’s general education program. With this information in hand, changes can be made to better serve JMU’s student population and increase JMU’s national reputation.

Assessment results are used to inform program changes and improvements, which in turn lead to a higher quality of education for all JMU students. Your scores on the assessments will not become part of your student record, GPA, or placement into programs/courses. However, all students are expected to participate in Assessment Day and provide good effort on the assessments. Unless you have been informed otherwise by us, if you fail to complete all the assessments assigned to you, a hold will be placed on your student record. This hold will prevent you from registering for future classes. If you receive a hold for not participating in Assessment Day, the Center for Assessment and Research Studies (CARS) will contact you directly with information on how to get the hold removed. For more information, please contact CARS at

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