TSTC is committed to providing highly specialized and advanced technical education that can lead to great career opportunities. We currently offer over 100 certificate and degree programs state-wide.

TSTC students come from more than 100 counties across the state. They arrive right out of high school, transfer from other colleges or from the workforce.

While we are proud that TSTC's education is affordable and a high return on your investment, we realize financial aid is the only option for some students.

At TSTC we understand your ultimate goal is a career you're passionate about and will make you the money you want to enjoy your life! Our goal is to help you be successful.

TSTC has been providing top-quality, career-driven education for Texans for close to 50 years. The college is nationally recognized for the number and quality of our technology graduates.

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Ability to Benefit

The information provided below about ATB tests/policies is subject to change without notice in order to comply with test publisher and Department of Education requirements.

In December 1990, the United States Department of Education issued a policy requiring the testing of applicants who did not possess a high school diploma or a GED (General Educational Development) credential but who wished to enroll in postsecondary education and apply for federal financial aid.

Passing an appropriate test at the specified level would indicate that the candidate has sufficient “ability to benefit” (ATB) from postsecondary education and consequently that the application process for federal financial aid could begin.  Reference:  Federal Register, Oct. 29, 2010 - effective July 1, 2011.

Texas State Technical College has selected the Accuplacer as the test that determines the candidate that has sufficient “ability to benefit.”


Fee: $30 

Tests are administered Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 9:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.  Payment must be received prior to scheduling.  We ask that you complete the application process and schedule your testing at least 24 hours in advance to ensure that you have a positive testing experience.

Identification Required

All identification must be current and will be verified prior to and at the end of testing.

  • A driver’s license
  • A high school ID
  • A college ID
  • A passport
  • A tribal ID card
  • A naturalization card or certificate of citizenship

Approved Passing Scores:

  • Reading Comprehension - 55
  • Sentence Skills - 60
  • Arithmetic - 34

Applicant must meet or exceed the minimum scores on all 3 of the approved tests in a single test administration.  Applicants will receive a Score Report immediately after the test is complete noting "ATB Passed" or "ATB Not Passing."  Passed score reports should be provided to the TSTC Financial Aid Department for processing.

An applicant who does not meet or exceed all 3 passing scores must retake the all 3 tests and pass all 3 tests in a single test administration.  Scores from 2 different test administrations cannot be mixed or combined.   

Re-test Policy

Within any three-month period, ATB applicants may be permitted an initial test and one retest.  Applicants are required to maintain a two (2) week waiting period between the initial test and the retest.  If the applicant does not pass after the retest, he/she must wait 3 months from the date of the initial test to re-test. 

If the applicant petitions the institution for a third (and or subsequent) attempt(s), the applicant must provide evidence of some instructional intervention that would suggest score improvement would be possible.

Special Accommodations

The Federal Register defines an individual with a disability as a person who has a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activity, has documentation or such an impairment, or is regarded as having such impairment. 

For more information about Ability to Benefit, please contact Karen Armstead at 254-867-3632 or karen.armstead@tstc.edu

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