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Ability-To-Benefit (ATB)

Effective July 1, 2015: Title lV funds are again available to students who are not high school graduates, provided they meet the criteria below and are enrolled in an eligible career pathway program  (contains two components: an adult education component and a Title IV eligible postsecondary program component).  For more information, please refer to page 926 of the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act of 2015.

  • Passes an independently administered U.S. Department of Education–approved ATB test.
  • Completes at least 6 credit hours or 225 clock hours that are applicable toward a degree or certificate offered by the postsecondary institution.
  • Completes a state process approved by the secretary of education.  Note: To date, no state process has ever been submitted for the secretary's approval.

Prior to 2012, students without a high school diploma or equivalent were able to access federal financial aid as long as they were able to demonstrate college readiness. The Ability-to-Benefit provision was eliminated as part of the fiscal year (FY) 2012 spending bill. The new ATB provisions passed in the 2015 spending bill partially reinstates the more expansive version of ATB.

Miami Dade College uses the ACCUPLACER Next-Generation for demonstrating college readiness through an approved ATB test.

ATB Remote Proctoring

The U.S. DOE extended the option for the remote proctoring of ATB tests through the end of the payment period that includes December 31, 2020 or the end of the payment period that includes the end date for the Federally-declared emergency related to COVID-19, whichever occurs later.

To utilize this feature, all test sessions must be administered by an MDC certified ATB proctor using MDC iBP (internet based proctoring). Remote live proctoring with Examity is not permitted for ATB purposes.

For additional information please click on the resources links below.


ATB Testing Referral Form

The following are score guidelines for ATB qualification using ACCUPLACER Next-Generation:

Passing Scores

Scores set as the qualification for ATB are one standard deviation below the mean for students graduating from high school who have taken ACCUPLACER in the last three years. The approved passing scores shown below apply to both the computer-adaptive and COMPANION versions of each test. Test takers must meet or exceed the minimum scores on each of the three approved tests in a single test administration; those who do not meet or exceed all three passing scores must retake the complete set of three tests and pass all three tests in that administration. Scores from two different administrations cannot be mixed or combined. To be eligible for ATB funding, a student must pass all three tests during one single test session.

ACCUPLACER Next-Generation Qualification Scores for ATB
ACCUPLACER Next-Generation Score
Reading 233
Writing 235
Arithmetic 230
The same test date must be used on all relevant parts of the administration. Students must meet all of the cut scores on all of the subtests on the same test date.
If needed, re-testing must be done on all required subtests after initial testing date. Ability-to-Benefit (ATB)students may retest once after two weeks have elapsed from the initial ATB testing date. For any subsequent attempts, the student must wait at least three months between administrations. Remediation is advised between administrations.
Test scores are valid for ATB purposes indefinitely.
The PERT is not an ATB eligible test.

Miami Dade College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate and baccalaureate degrees.
Contact the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Miami Dade College.
Miami Dade College is an equal access/equal opportunity institution which does not discriminate on the basis of sex, race, color, marital status, age, religion, national origin,
disability, veteran’s status, ethnicity, pregnancy, sexual orientation or genetic information. Additional information may be obtained by contacting the
Office of Equal Opportunity Programs/ADA Coordinator/Title IX Coordinator, at 305.237.2577.