All undergraduate students are required to fulfill the University’s General Education requirements, one of which is “Quantitative Reasoning.” To earn your undergraduate degree, you must complete two courses that involve quantitative reasoning. Depending on your major and program, your QR1 and QR2 courses may or may not be math classes. If you intend to enroll in a math class, though, you will probably need to take the math placement test.
The Department of Mathematics coordinates the math placement exam. which is called "ALEKS PPL." To take this online placement test, you will log in through the Math Department's ALEKS PPL Math Placement Test page, where you will find instructions and answers to frequently asked questions.
Your ALEKS PPL score will place you into an appropriate math course. Options range from MATH 101 "Thinking Mathematically" up through MATH 220 "Calculus I." Your math placement is valid for only four months. This means that you must enroll in and complete your math course in the semester immediately following the date of your test. Otherwise, you will need to take the test again prior to enrolling in a math class.
Math is the only placement test that you can take more than once. When you complete the test, your score will appear on the screen. If you are satisfied with the result, you will enroll in the course that you qualify for. If you are not satisfied with the result, you can study the material that gave you difficulty by accessing the Preparation and Learning Module and then you can take the test again to try to earn a higher placement. There is a 24-hour waiting period between the first and second attempts. Between the second and third attempts, you will be required to engage in the Learning Module for a minimum of 5 hours before you can log in and test again. If you wish to test a fourth or fifth time, contact the Math Department for permission and a password. Taking the test multiple times is an option, not a requirement.
All incoming freshmen are required to take the ALEKS PPL Math Placement Exam regardless of academic background, dual credit, any Advanced Placement (AP) scores and AP credit, or any International Baccalaureate (IB) scores and IB credit. There are no exceptions. If you are a new freshman, you must take the math placement test. You should then discuss with your academic advisor whether you should enroll in a math class for your degree requirements or whether you should enroll in some other QR class.
Transfer students are required to take the ALEKS PPL Math Placement Test only if you plan to enroll in a 'Calculus I' class or in a math class lower than Calculus I. If you're a transfer student who will NOT be enrolling in Calc I or in a lower-level math class, then you don't need to take the math placement test.
The ALEKS PPL Math Placement Test has a 3-hour time limit. Students who need extra time can request authorization for extended time from the Division of Disability Resources and Educational Services (DRES). You must have already been accepted to Illinois before you can apply for accommodations. For more information, please contact DRES.