The University of Arizona

Information for Incoming Freshmen

Math Placement Information for Incoming Freshmen - Please Read Before Taking the PPL Assessment

SAT/ACT Placement  |  PPL Assessment- read before taking the assessment   |  College Math Credit | FAQs for Freshmen

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. Other courses like CHEM 141/151/161, PHYS 102/181, MCB 181L/R also have math related eligibility requirements. 

Check the Math Placement area of your Next Steps Center to determine your placement level and to see if you should take the PPL 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. 

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 PPL scores in order to enroll in a UA Math course at or below the level of Calculus I (Math 122A/B, 125).  

SAT I MSS, ACT MATH Placement: Scores must be recent (8/01/2018 thought 2020 for Fall 2020 incoming students).  Scores from prior to 8/01/2018 will not be used for Math Placement.  

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  PPL Assessment.  Check your initial placement message in your Next Steps Center to find out if the PPL Assessment is recommended/required. If you have scores that are not showing in the Next Steps Center, please send a copy to the Math Placement Office one week prior to your orientation.   

How SAT I MSS and ACT MATH scores are used for placement can be found on our Course Placement website.  If your scores are not in your Next Steps Center one week prior to your orientation date, please email a copy of your scores to placement@math.arizona.edu .   Include your UA SID and your orientation date. Check your Next Steps Center before sending a message. 

Do you have college math credit? 

PPL Assessment (UA ALEKS Math Placement Assessment)

The  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:

What if I have college math credit?

If you have college-level dual enrollment credit, transfer course credit, AP, IB, CLEP or other credit you must send an official College Level Transcript or AP/IB/CLEP etc. score report to UA. This is not provided through your High School.  If your credit is not on your UA record prior to your registration date, you should also email an unofficial college level transcript or AP/IB/CLEP score report to the Math Placement Office . Include your UA SID and orientation date.  

How can I check if my credit is in the UA system?  - Wait until one week before your orientation date to check this. If it is not in the UA system, email an unofficial copy (must be from the college or an unofficial AP/IB etc. score report) to the Math Placement Office. Please include your orientation date. 

View the UA policy for AP credit or other credit by exam.

Out-of-state college level Math courses require an evaluation.

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.  

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