With only a few exceptions, WSU undergraduate students are required to take the WSU Math Placement Assessment (MPA) to determine readiness for various courses.
The WSU Math Placement Assessment is through ALEKS and is a fully automated, adaptive system that covers material from Basic Math through Pre-calculus. The assessment takes approximately 90 minutes to complete. After the assessment, a targeted Prep and Learning Module is available for you to review and learn material, and to improve placement and eventual course outcomes.
All students are strongly encouraged to spend several hours using the ALEKS Prep and Learning Module. Even if you have achieved placement in your desired course, time spent in ALEKS will better prepare you for your upcoming course and ultimately lead to better grades.
A $45 fee will be billed to your WSU student account. This cost includes up to a full year of access to the WSU MPA package including:
There are two access periods: March 1-February 28 for students starting in a fall semester and October 1-September 30 for students starting in a spring semester.
You will not be able to register for a WSU math course without either a math placement score, transfer credit for a prerequisite course, or AP Calculus credit. AP Calculus AB scores of 2 or above will be accepted for placement into Math 140, Math 151, Math 171, or Math 202. AP Calculus AB scores of 3-5 will be accepted for placement into Math 172. Scores from SAT, ACT, or the State of Washington intermediate or advanced math placement test cannot be used.
First of all, RELAX. This is an “assessment,” NOT A TEST. The difference is that an assessment is designed to determine what you know. At the end of the ALEKS Placement Assessment, you will have a much better sense of your strengths and weaknesses in math. You will then have a chance to work on those weaknesses. There is really no penalty for incorrectly answering a question on the assessment. The most important thing is that you take the assessment seriously and give it an honest effort so that the assessment truly reflects your level of knowledge and math preparedness.
Be honest about your skill level. There is no benefit to cheating on the placement assessment – your only reward will be that you are forced to take a class that is too difficult for your current level of mathematical knowledge. Therefore, while you are taking the assessment, do not consult any other source for help (friends, family, textbooks, internet searches, etc.). The purpose of the placement assessment is to give an accurate measure of your current mathematical skills so that you will be successful in your mathematics courses. Please see the Washington State Standards of Conduct for Students.
Practice. You may take a free ALEKS assessment, at any time, to become comfortable with the process. This free assessment is only a tutorial to familiarize yourself with the ALEKS system and your result will not be recorded. To access this go to go to www.aleks.com and follow these steps:
Before taking the assessment you will need:
Please follow these general instructions for taking the assessment:
Begin the assessment
After taking the assessment, your results will be updated on the morning of the next business day. You will then be able to register for the class for which you qualify. After the first assessment, all re-assessments must be proctored. You may retake the placement assessment up to four times. Before the first re-assessment, you are required to spend 3 hours in the Prep and Learning module and an additional 5 hours in the Prep and Learning module before the second re-assessment. If you are returning to the Math Placement package, sign in here.
You may take the re-assessment with a proctor at no cost in the campus Exam Proctoring Center, during regular business hours (Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.). Please schedule your appointment at least two days in advance. You will need to bring photo ID, blank paper, and a pencil and allow up to two hours for the assessment.
Updates to the ALEKS Math Placement Re-assessment as of 7/12/2023
Students may now take the ALEKS Math Placement Re-assessment without a proctor. Please follow the instructions below:
– Go to ALEKS.com
– Click the “Sign up now” link for New Users under the login box for registered users.
– Enter the following “Course Code” when prompted: GX6RL-NK63C
Include both your WSU Student ID and the email address you use the most often when registering. It might indicate that one or both of these are optional, but they are not. Without the WSU Student ID the placement info will not go to your student record, so you will not be able to register for a math class and without the email information, you will miss important reminders associated with the placement process.