Greetings, Florida resident and prospective college student! You may have heard about the PERT Test and want to know how to prepare for the undertaking.
If you are worried about passing the PERT Math Test, then don’t worry. This article is here to teach you how to prepare for the PERT Math Test and overcome its trials, and cobble together the perfect study schedule and methods to ace the test!
What is the PERT Math Test?
The Postsecondary Education Readiness Test, commonly known as the PERT Test, is Florida’s custom placement test, designed to examine an up-and-coming college student’s readiness for college material. Your performance on this test will determine where exactly you will place on your courses and what kind of college experience you will go through (in the specific fields of study: namely Math, Reading, and Writing English; though you are not always required to complete every subtest, you generally must complete the Reading and Writing portions before the Math subtest). Completing this test is a requirement for many colleges and universities in Florida, so you do not want to miss out.
While there are three sections of the PERT Test, we will only talk about how to study for the mathematics subtest or the exam section that focuses specifically on mathematics, which deals specifically with pre-algebra, algebra, and geometry.
The test is a “computer adaptive test,” as it is 1) it is done entirely online and 2) adapts to your academic and ability level. You do not have to worry about being handed material far beyond your league (and even if it was a worry, well, this is what this article is for!). You are given a selection of thirty questions to answer. The test is not timed, but you do have to complete it on the same day you begin.
You cannot “pass” or “fail” the PERT Test—the score ranges from as low as 50 to as high as 150 for each subtest. If you complete your PERT Math Test with flying colors, then you can immediately start your college courses. However, if you score too low on your computer adapted PERT Math Test, then you will need to take a basic or remedial course in their stead.
But enough about the dramatically high stakes. How difficult is this Math subtest of the PERT Test, you may ask?
Is the PERT Math Test Hard?
The lowest score you need to get right out of remedial math and into the regular courses is 114 out of 150. As the entire range is from 50 to 150, that is a very tight window for success.
Specifically, getting a score of 114-122 on the PERT Math Test will only mean you can enroll in Intermediate Algebra. Getting higher than 122 will open to you a wide array of mathematics courses, including College Mathematics and Statistical Reasoning.
To say the PERT Math Test is hard is to assume about your proficiency in mathematics. If you are a borne math prodigy or simply love solving integrals, functions, and exponents, then the PERT Math Test is just for you, as it is explicitly designed to measure your proficiency in math.
Of course, you would not be on this article if you were wholly confident in your ability to ace the test! You shouldn’t be asking how difficult the PERT Math Test is, but rather what level of math you should be prepared to study for.
What Level of Math is on the PERT Math Test?
The PERT Math Test focuses on three fields: pre-algebra, algebra, and geometry. As this is a test to examine and determine placement for college courses, these courses, and by extension, the questions and material on the test, are focused on mathematics deemed a step above high school and other secondary education and a student’s first experience to college work.
The PERT Math Test is a general readiness exam, so it primarily tests mathematics skills fit for a college freshman—a student who needs to complete a few core classes but is not necessarily a math major.
The PERT Math Test would ask of you an assortment of different questions in related math fields, including:
- Exponents, variables, and expressions,
- How to add, subtract, multiple, and divide integers, decimals, and fractions,
- Functions and graphing functions,
- Radical, rational, quadratic, and algebraic expressions,
- Systems of equations
- Angles, perimeter, circumference, and area
The PERT Math Test will be anyone’s first step into the field of college-level mathematics. Speaking from personal experience, you should be prepared to deal with unheard-of mathematical concepts like the unit circle, derivatives and antiderivatives, and calculating volumes as well.
Does this seem overwhelming to you? Well, fret not: your objective when taking the PERT Math Test isn’t about getting the highest possible score. No, the PERT Test’s standards are markedly different from most standardized tests. It is not about how high you can score but rather what that score says about your readiness for college. So what is a good PERT Math Test score?
What is a Good Math PERT Score?
A score of 114 is the bare minimum to avoid remedial classes. Scoring between 114 and 122 puts you comfortably in the Intermediate Algebra class. Any higher than that, and you open up a robust variety of courses.
As stated before, you do not “pass” or “fail” the PERT Math Test. Even if you make the worst possible score (which is highly unlikely, so do not panic yet!), your labor will bear fruit in some way. Getting a score of 114 or lower on the test, however, is not ideal. Basic and remedial courses are designed for students who, for various reasons, are believed not to be prepared for college-level work and have to brush up on their academic skills in secondary education (i.e., high school) before moving to postsecondary education.
Taking a remedial course or two is not the end of the world, and it is undoubtedly a better option than being barred from college entirely. However, to put it in one way, it does mean that your bus to college has hit the brakes, and you have to wait a while before you can drive forward. To ensure that it does not have to come to that, you would want to prepare and study as much as possible.
In general, however, you shouldn’t worry about your PERT Math test scores. The test is not about your score or how high the points are—it’s about whether you’re ready to take up college courses. The only way to show your preparedness is to develop a decent study regimen and truly become a college student.
How Do You Study for the PERT Math Test?
How do you pass the PERT Math test? Much like with any test, it requires an intense amount of study. If you are taking this test, you are already on the warpath to a future in secondary education. Commonly, this means that you may be finishing or are fresh out of high school. If so, you will have a comfortable time studying since you have already done so for the past four years. Otherwise, if this is your first time in a while that you have even touched the subject of math (and I don’t blame you!), then studying is especially important for you. You will need to relearn three whole different fields of mathematics and understand how to take a test all over again.
Thankfully, we have just a few crucial tips to help you get right back into the studying mood, as well as how to study again:
Hit the Books
The first tip to studying for the PERT Math Test is to gain a collection of reading and study materials, including notebooks, pencils, pens, scratch paper, and of course, textbooks. Additionally, you should check the mountainous stash of old homework and test results to see what you have already done in mathematics.
The biggest hurdle in a test is often trying to figure out what the test question is asking of you in the first place. Recognize keywords and instructions to go into a particular question knowing what it is you have to do before you do it.
However, don’t just memorize details and instructions, but truly understand why certain equations work the way they do and what exactly goes into answering a question.
Choose textbooks that focus each and exclusively on pre-algebra, algebra, and geometry to start. Additionally, there are specific study guides for the PERT Math Test. They provide specific details on the test and develop a study regiment, including sample questions and their accompanying answers. The best PERT Math Test study guide is found online, much like the test itself.
Map Out a Schedule
What is as important as reading and studying the material is forming a coherent schedule that will allow you to understand and use it. Cramming is an ineffectual way to study, and cramming mere days before the test is a recipe for a disaster cake decorated with half-remembered details and panic attacks.
As a test taker and future college student, you need to know how to manage your time, whether you have it or not, in such a way that studying is both feasible and productive. It would be best if you chose a time and what material you will focus on in that time. However, you should also remember to take breaks and space your study time out evenly.
We recommend studying for two hours every day, including weekends, with ten-minute breaks to break up the studying flow.
Practice, Practice, and Practice for the Test
There are many different PERT Test Preps and practice tests available on the internet, designed to give you a clear idea of what the ultimate test would be like. Understanding the fundamental material is very important, but applying that knowledge where it matters is even more critical. It is the difference between knowing how to drive and putting yourself into the driver’s seat.
We recommend making taking practice tests a regular exercise and trying out the questions and examples on those tests in your free time. It is unlikely that the same questions would appear on the final test, so don’t treat practice tests as if you found some hidden cheat code. Completing the actual PERT Math Test would have to take you all of your knowledge, effort, and attention.
Wrapping Things Up: How to Prepare for the PERT Math Test?
The PERT Math Test is designed to measure your readiness for college. Nothing more says you are ready for a pursuit in postsecondary education than developing a strict study regimen to ace a test. In short, by simply preparing, then you are already on your way to becoming a college student! Once you fully dedicate yourself to your studies, you will make it into your college math classes with no problem.