Placement Exams

To be Rowdy Ready, we recommend that you sign up for and take the Math and Chemistry Placement Exams prior to attending Orientation and meeting with your academic advisor.

You should take a Math Placement Exam if you are TSI complete in Math and need to take a math course higher than College Algebra, as it is one way you can fulfill the prerequisites to enroll in Pre-Calculus or Calculus.

You should take the Chemistry Placement Exam if you need a higher Chemistry course than Basic Chemistry and want to register and take General Chemistry (CHE 1103) your first semester.

Math Placement Exam

What is the Math Placement Exam?

The placement exam will gauge which math course is appropriate for you, based on your performance. If it has been a year or more since you took a math course, you may need to spend time reviewing in order to be successful in the placement exam.

Do I have to take the Math Placement Exam?

For certain majors, especially in the College of Science and College of Engineering, higher-level math courses are required in order to fulfill degree requirements. It would be highly beneficial to be able to skip College Algebra and be placed in these courses in your first semester. If you pass the Math Placement Exam, you will be able to enroll in Pre-Calculus (MAT 1093) or Calculus (MAT 1214). In order to register for those higher level math classes at Orientation, you must have either a Math Placement Exam score on file or your scores/credits received from AP/IB/Dual Credit courses must be already processed. Because they might not be processed in time for your Orientation session, we recommend you complete the Math Placement Exam so you can register for a higher level math course without delay.

Since the Math Placement Exam can only result in placement in a higher-level math course and not nullify any credits you earned from other exams or courses, you have nothing to lose in taking the exam!

How can I prepare for the Exam?

To help you prepare, we recommend that you take a practice placement exam online. You should use only a four function calculator and limit your time for the assessment to 90 minutes for an accurate assessment.

Take Practice Placement Exam, Part 1

Take Practice Placement Exam, Part 2

These are interactive versions of the practice placement exam.

What if I don’t need a higher-level course?

Even if your current major doesn’t require higher level math, if you ever change your major, it is better to begin with a higher math course than a lower math course so that more possible majors are open to you. Studies show over 50% of college students change their major at least once.

Where do I take the exam?

You have to register to take the exam through your ASAP account. No walk-in slots are available. Schedule your exam before your Orientation session on a day that is convenient for you.

Taking it at UTSA

UTS Testing Services offers the math placement exam on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 11:00 am.

  1. Register to take the Math Placement Exam by logging into your ASAP account and clicking on "Testing Services Office (Testing Registration)" under the "Student Services" tab.
  2. Show up at your registered time at UTSA Testing Services. Bring valid, physical, photo ID such as a driver’s license, student ID which is current, passport (not expired).
  3. The fee for the exam is $20, which is charged to your UTSA account.
Taking it Remotely

If you live more than an hour away from San Antonio, we offer a remote testing option. The Remote Math Placement is available only for first-attempt Math Placement examinees.

  1. Log into your ASAP account to register to take the Math Placement Exam by clicking on "Testing Services Office (Testing Registration)" under the "Student Services" tab. You must choose "Remote Math Placement" from the list of Test options.
  2. Locate a proctor that is willing to administer the test at the date and time you prefer. Your proctor must complete the "Proctor Security Agreement and Acknowledgement Form".
  3. Fill out the "Remote Math Placement Disclaimer" form.
  4. Email following information to testinfo@utsa.edu with the subject line "Remote Math Request":
    • Proctor Security Agreement and Acknowledgement Form
    • Remote Math Placement Disclaimer Form
    • Your Full Name, myUTSA ID and phone number
    • Your proctor’s full name, job title, professional email address and professional phone number with area code
    • the date and time you selected on ASAP
What happens if I don’t successfully pass the exam? Can I retake it?

The test may only be taken twice, so take the exam seriously the first time. Review the practice problems and ensure that you have adequate time to devote to taking the test before you register to take it again.

I took the AP Calculus exam. Should I still take the placement exam?

Yes. You should still consider taking the Math Placement Exam because AP scores are not available until mid-summer, and decisions about your eligibility for math courses may be needed prior to the receipt of your AP scores. Although a passing score on the AP exam will earn you college credit, we recommend you take the placement exam, so you can register for higher level math courses at Orientation, even if your scores haven’t been received.

It is possible that your AP score will allow you to register for a higher level math course, so you can check with an advisor at Orientation about prerequisites needed to take a course.

I have already taken College Algebra or Calculus at a community college. Should I still take the placement exam?

Yes, we recommend you take the Math Placement Exam prior to attending Orientation. Most likely your college credit will be reviewed after your Orientation session, so placement into math classes at Orientation can be based on your Math Placement Exam score.

I took College Algebra, Precalculus, or Calculus in my high school. Should I still take the placement test?

Yes. A high school course does not count towards college credit unless it was taken as part of a dual credit program through a college or university. Students must take the Math Placement Exam in order to place into the appropriate higher level math course at UTSA if they don’t already have the required prerequisites.

If you took a college-level or dual credit course while in high school, you must provide appropriate documentation to the Office of Undergraduate Admissions so that your credits will appear on your records. Final transcripts often get processed after Orientation, which means you’ll have to hold off on registering for higher level courses until those are submitted and get reviewed. If you pass the Math Placement Exam, you can register for those classes at Orientation.

Chemistry Placement Exam

Who should take the Chemistry Placement Exam?

For certain majors, especially in the College of Sciences, General Chemistry and other higher level Chemistry courses are required in order to fulfill degree requirements; however, the prerequisite is Basic Chemistry. It would be highly beneficial to be able to skip Basic Chemistry and be placed in General Chemistry your first semester. Even if your current major doesn’t require a higher level Chemistry course, if you ever change your major, it is better to begin with General Chemistry than a Basic Chemistry course so that more major options open to you.

In order to register for General Chemistry at Orientation, you must have either a passing Chemistry Placement Exam score on file or your credits received from AP or Dual credit courses must be already processed.Because they might not be processed in time for your Orientation session, we recommend you complete the Chemistry Placement Exam before your Orientation session. Also, if you don’t have Dual Credit or AP or CLEP scores to meet the Basic Chemistry requirement, taking the Chemistry Placement Exam can also meet that prerequisite. This will save you time and money.

Note about the Chemistry Exam Scores

We recommend that you sign up and take the Chemistry Placement Exam prior to attending Orientation and meeting with your academic advisor. While your scores on the Chemistry Placement Exam can result in placement in a higher-level Chemistry course, it cannot result in a course placement lower than Basic Chemistry. Low scores on the Chemistry Placement exam will also not nullify any credits you earned from other exams, so you have nothing to lose in taking the exam.

How Do I Take the Chemistry Placement Exam?

There are two ways you can take the Chemistry Placement Exam. One option is through UTSA Testing Services; the other option is through the UTSA Chemistry Department. Each has it’s own particular steps, so please read carefully.

Option 1: Chemistry Placement Exam through Testing Service

  • Register on ASAP
  • Fee is $10 for exam
  • Need to achieve passing score of 21 out of 30 questions

Option 2: Chemistry Placement Exam through Chemistry Department
Must take an online course Preparation of General Chemistry I through ALEKS. Cost is $30. To register:

  1. Go to www.aleks.com
  2. Click on New Student Sign-Up
  3. Put in the course code: N34HN-9GQJE.
  4. Click to purchase an access code for the course, which is valid for 90 days for one student. Access code is not shareable or able to be returned after purchase.
  5. Fill out the Student Information web page.
  6. Take the Initial Assessment
    You will be asked to solve about 20-30 problems (this will take you anywhere from 30 to 90 minutes – at any time you can logout and log back on, it will keep your place).
  7. After the assessment, you will see a pie chart of what you already know, what you’re ready to learn, and what topics you’ll eventually need to learn. You can begin working on topics by scrolling over pie sections of available topics and clicking the hyperlink.

For technical issues with accessing ALEKS, you can contact their Tech Support at (714) 619-7090.

You will have up to 90 days of working at your own pace to complete the online course. To pass the prep course, you must score a 90% or higher.

Once you completed the online course with 90% or higher, the UTSA Chemistry Department will be notified and you will receive an email with dates and times that you can come to the Chemistry Department to take the placement exam, for free. You must pass the Chemistry Placement exam with at least an 80%.

This option is recommended for students who do not have a good knowledge base of high school chemistry and as a second option for students who took the Chemistry Placement Exam through Testing Services but failed to achieve a 70% or better.

I took the AP Chemistry exam. Should I still take the placement exam?

Yes. You should still consider taking the Chemistry Placement Exam because AP scores are not available until mid-summer, and decisions about your eligibility for Chemistry courses may be needed prior to the receipt of your AP scores. Although a passing score on the AP exam will earn you college credit, we recommend you take the placement exam, so you can register for General Chemistry courses at Orientation, even if your scores haven’t been received.

It is possible that your AP score will allow you to register for a higher level Chemistry course, so you can check with an advisor at Orientation about prerequisites needed to take a course.

I have already taken Basic Chemistry at a community college. Should I still take the placement exam?

Yes, we recommend you take the Chemistry Placement Exam prior to attending Orientation. Most likely your college credit will be reviewed after your Orientation session, so placement into Chemistry classes at Orientation can be based on your Chemistry Placement Exam score.

I took a Chemistry course in high school. Should I still take the placement exam?

Yes. A high school course does not count towards college credit unless it was taken as part of a dual credit program through a college or university. Students must take the Chemistry Placement Exam in order to place into the appropriate higher level Chemistry course at UTSA.

If you took a college-level or dual credit course while in high school, you must provide appropriate documentation to the Office of Undergraduate Admissions so that your credits will appear on your records. Even if you have dual credits that will place you in a General Chemistry course, we strongly recommend you to take the placement exam so that you can register for those classes at Orientation as final transcripts often get processed after Orientation. Until they are processed before your advising appointment, you won’t be able to register for higher level Chemistry courses. If you pass the Chemistry Placement Exam, you can register for those classes at Orientation.

Questions? Contact the following office:

UTSA Testing Services

Email: testinfo@utsa.edu
Call:210-458-4125
Web: utsa.edu/testing

Still have a question? Ask Rowdy

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