Information for Incoming Freshmen
THE ALEKS PPL Math Placement Assessment (test) is not available at this time. Please check back in late April or early May for updates.
Math Placement Information for Incoming Freshmen - Please Read Before Taking the ALEKS PPL Placement Assessment
Everything you need to know about Math Placement for incoming freshmen is on this page. Please read this page before emailing or calling the Math Department. Email is the preferred form of contact so students can get information in writing. We offer in-person advising at orientation and are happy to talk to any student at that time. Students who have any college math credits must see a math advisor at orientation. We will figure out how the credit fits into your UA requirements and math placement at that time.
UA Foundation Math Requirement
Each major at the UA has a specific foundation MATH course requirement set by the major.
The Math Department has strict eligibility requirements for our courses, to ensure that students are placed into the Math course that meets their current skill level.
Check the Math Placement area of your Next Steps Center to determine your placement level and to see if you should take the Math Placement Assessment.
If your Next Steps Center Math message recommends testing, click on Go To Examity to take the Math Placement Assessment. Students should test at least one week prior to their orientation date, if possible. However, tests completed prior to orientation will be processed in time for course registration.
Other courses like CHEM 141/151/161, PHYS 102/181, MCB 181L/R also have math related eligibility requirements.
Please note that students who have college-level math credits through AP, IB, CLEP, or dual enrollment credit still need a placement through SAT I, ACT, or UA ALEKS PPL scores in order to enroll in a UA Math course at or below the level of Calculus I (Math 122A/B, 125). Please bring any scores or college level transcripts with you to math advising at orientation. You do not need to send this in advance as you will not be able to adjust your schedule until your orientation date.
Students are given an initial placement level based on SAT I or ACT Math scores, if possible. Students who do not qualify for their UA foundation MATH requirement through SAT I or ACT math scores will be directed to take the UA ALEKS PPL Math Placement Assessment. Check your initial placement message in your Next Steps Center to find out if the UA ALEKS PPL test is recommended/required. If you have scores that are not showing in the Next Steps Center, please bring copies of your scores to Math Advising at your orientation session.
How SAT I MSS and ACT MATH scores are used for placement can be found on our Course Placement website.
The ALEKS PPL Assessment is available to any student, and is recommended to students who do not qualify for their foundation math class based on SAT I MSS or ACT MATH Score. Check your Next Steps Center math message. If testing is recommended, please take the Assessment.
The first attempt at your assessment through the Next Steps Center is included in your enrollment fee. There are about 30 questions and the test takes 60-90 minutes. There is a 3 hour time limit. You must complete it in one sitting. You can retest for a fee of $26. Tests are proctored through Examity, an online proctoring service. Access Examity through your Next Steps Center. Use Chrome or Firefox browsers, disable pop-up blockers, and read the information before proceeding to Examity to access the test or set a testing appointment. Read more about the assessment below:
- Students need high-speed internet, a webcam, and a microphone to access the test through Examity, an online proctoring service. Access to Examity is through the Next Steps Center for incoming students.
- Read about the test (Assessment) here. Scores expire after one year.
- You can review for the Placement test.
- You can use blank scratch paper, a writing utensil, and an approved calculator.
- Scores are processed into the UA system several times a day. Check Next Steps 12-24 hours after testing. Note that your placement message in your Next Steps Center is based on the requirements for your current major and may not include all courses.
- What score do I need to take a particular Math course? You don't have to take the highest level math course that you place into. Many students opt to take a lower level course. See a math advisor at orientation about this option. Don't view your score as you would a regular test. There is no grade and no "failing" score. For example, 40% places a student into College Algebra. Check the scores here.
- Print and Read before testing document - this provides more details about the assessment.
- Students who need access to screen reading technology for testing should contact the Math Placement Office to access the test. This is not available through the Next Steps Center.
- Students are to take the Math Placement test without the assistance of any persons, textbooks, online materials, or any other assistance. Any violation of this will be considered cheating and a violation of the UA Code of Conduct. There can be serious consequences to artificially high placement testing scores. It is important to make an honest attempt at the test. Once you complete the test, your score is final regardless of any technical difficulties you may encounter during the exam.
- You can retest through Examity. There is a retesting fee, $26 per attempt. There is a 24 hour waiting period between tests.
- Once your first test score is processed, you will have access to a free Prep and Learning Module available through your Next Steps Center. This module may not be available after classes begin. Review is strongly recommended before testing. You can test up to 5 times.
- When you retest, look for and click on PLACEMENT ASSESSMENT.
- If you are not able to test remotely through Examity (no access to high speed internet, webcam/microphone not available), please contact the Math Placement Office for an alternative way to test.
- Examity Quick Guide
- FAQs for Testing
If you have college-level dual enrollment credit, transfer course credit, AP, IB, CLEP or other credit ... you still need a placement score - SAT I, ACT, or UA ALEKS PPL - for entry into a UA Math course at or below the level of Calculus. Follow the instructions in your Next Steps Center.
Bring a copy of your college-level transcript or score report (not high school) to math advising at orientation.
Options for Students Who Place into Math 100
Many students do not progress beyond high school Algebra II, do not take a math class their senior year of high school, or take a non-algebra based course like Statistics. These students tend to place into UA Math 100. Math 100 is a college review course that is paired with SAS 100AX and the Schedule for Success Program. This program is designed to fill in the gaps from high school math curriculum in order to prepare students for UA Math 105, 106, 107, or 112. About a third of our incoming students place into Math 100.
Students who place into Math 100 should review and retest, particularly students who took a high school pre-calculus math course or higher level math. Some students are able to review and successfully qualify for the next level courses. Many students take Math 100 and then continue on to successfully complete the next level math course.