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CUNY Assessmet Test in Writing

Evaluation and Testing

CUNY Assessmet Test in Writing


The CAT in Writing is:

  • A standardized writing test that measures your ability to do college-level writing in English and assess your readiness for introductory college courses
  • A 90-minute written essay
  • A respond to a reading passage that you see for the first time when you sit for the test

In the test, you are required to read, understand, and respond to a passage of 250-300 words. The CATW  tests your ability to think and write in English, similar to the way you will be asked to think and write throughout your college career. It consists of a reading passage (the text) and writing instructions. You must read the passage and instructions and then write an essay responding to the passage while following the instructions.

You may bring a non-electronic dictionary to the test (a paperback dictionary is recommended), bilingual if preferred.

You must achieve a total score of 56 or more to demonstrate college readiness.

On the CAT in Writing, students have no automatic retest. But students who scores a 48 or higher on the writing test may be eligible to file an appeal of their score. For information about appealing a writing score visit the Office of Evaluation and Testing.



If you are accepted to City College and you are required to take one or more of the CUNY Assessment tests (CATs) for admission or for placement into appropiate courses you will automatically receive a testing letter.

If you cannot honor your testing date and time or wiould like to find out your scheduled test date, please review our test schedule and contact the office of Evaluation and Testing.


A low score on your CUNY assessment  test(s) could determine whether or not you can enroll in credit-bearing courses directly or wether you must first take non-credit courses. 

Youshould take advantage of the different test preparation resources available for the CUNY Assessment Test in Writing.




Accommodations based on disabilities will be granted to comply with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act.

If you wish to request such accommodations contact the AccessAbility Center which, will certify eligibility and coordinate accommodations with the office of Evaluation and Testing.