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All students who register for courses at the University of Iowa must satisfy the prerequisites for those courses. Prerequisites for all courses are listed on MyUI courses. Please see the CLAS Prerequisites Policy for more information.
For many mathematics courses, prerequisites are satisfied by earning the required grade in another math course or by earning the required score on a math placement exam.
If the prerequisite for a course is another math course, only math courses taken at a college or university will be considered to satisfy the prerequisite. High school math courses do not satisfy math course prerequisites.
Placement courses
The courses listed in the following table allow a math placement score to satisfy the prerequisites for the course.
Remember: Students may also satisfy the prerequisite by taking an appropriate prerequisite course.
Two different math placement tests are offered through the University of Iowa: the ALEKS math placement test and the Advanced Math Placement test (formerly known as the MPT 3). For each course, the placement test students should take to satisfy the prerequisite is listed.
Course Number  Course Name  Math placement test used to satisfy the prerequisite 

MATH:1005  College Algebra  ALEKS 
MATH:1010  Trigonometry  ALEKS 
MATH:1020  Elementary Functions  ALEKS 
MATH:1120  Logic of Arithmetic  ALEKS 
MATH:1130  Theory of Arithmetic  ALEKS or Advanced Math Placement 
MATH:1140  Math Basis of Elementary Geometry  ALEKS 
MATH:1340  Mathematics for Business  ALEKS 
MATH:1350  Quantitative Reasoning for Business  ALEKS or Advanced Math Placement 
MATH:1380  Calculus and Matrix Algebra for Business  ALEKS or Advanced Math Placement 
MATH:1440  Mathematics for the Biological Sciences  ALEKS 
MATH:1460  Calculus for the Biological Sciences  ALEKS or Advanced Math Placement 
MATH:1550  Engineering Math I  ALEKS or Advanced Math Placement 
MATH:1560  Engineering Math II  Advanced Math Placement 
MATH:1850  Calculus I  ALEKS or Advanced Math Placement 
MATH:1860  Calculus II  Advanced Math Placement 
MATH:2550  Engineering Math III  Advanced Math Placement 
MATH:2700  Introduction to Linear Algebra  Advanced Math Placement 
Placement tests
There are two different math placement tests available to students: the ALEKS math placement test and the Advanced Math Placement Test (formerly known as the MPT 3).
New first year students
All new firstyear students are required to take the ALEKS Math Placement Test. Firstyear students who took a year or more of calculus in high school or who have earned college credit for calculus should also take the Advanced Math Placement Test.
Transfer students
Transfer students who do not have either high school (one year) or college credit for calculus who are interested in taking a math class (for any reason), should take the ALEKS math placement test.
Transfer students who took a year or more of calculus in high school or who have earned college credit for calculus should take the Advanced Math Placement Test.
Continuing students
Continuing students interested in enrolling in a math course must have the appropriate math placement score or have earned a grade of C or better in a prerequisite course.
Students who have not previously taken a calculus course should take the ALEKS math placement test. Students who have taken a calculus course either in high school or at another college or university should take the Advanced Math Placement Test first.
Any student who takes the Advanced Math Placement Test first and earns an 8 or lower should then take the ALEKS math placement test.
Learn more about the placement tests
The ALEKS math placement test is used to place students into courses at or below MATH:1850 Calculus I, except MATH:1560 Engineering Math II. All new firstyear students are required to take the ALEKS Math Placement Test. Students who register for an ALEKS math placement test are entitled to five placement exams and six months of access to an ALEKS learning module. Learn more about the ALEKS math placement test and access the link to take the test on the new students website.
When students are admitted to the university, they are automatically granted access to the ALEKS math placement test. Students can have their access to the ALEKS math placement tests or learning modules extended by sending an email to Amanda Marr at amandamarr@uiowa.edu. Extensions may be requested for the following reasons:
 When trying to log in to the ALEKS, a student receives a message that the course has expired or is asked for a course code to take the ALEKS math placement test
 A student has used all five placement tests and needs to take an additional test
 A student's sixmonth access to the learning module has expired
The Advanced Math Placement test (formerly known as the MPT 3) is for students who have previously taken a year or more of calculus course in high school or who have college credit for calculus.
The Advanced Math Placement test can be used for placement into calculus courses (MATH:1380, MATH:1460, MATH:1550, MATH:1850, or MATH:1860) and linear algebra courses (MATH:2550 or MATH:2700).
Students who earn an 8 or lower on the Advanced Math Placement test will be asked to take the ALEKS math placement test before registering for classes. The Advanced Math Placement test is the only math placement test that will indicate whether or not a student is prepared for MATH:1560 Engineering Math II, MATH:1860 Calculus II, MATH:2550 Engineering Math III, or MATH:2700 Introduction to Linear Algebra. Learn more about the test and access a link to take in on the new students website.
If a student took a math placement exam more than one year ago and has not taken a university math course, the Department of Mathematics strongly recommends that the student retake the appropriate math placement test.
Course recommendations
The Advanced Math Placement test gives the following recommendations.
Score  Recommendation 

08  Take the ALEKS math placement test. 
914  Students should consult with their advisor to determine the appropriate course out of the following list:

1520  Students should consult with their advisor to determine the appropriate course out of the following list:

Course recommendations are listed on degree audits.
ALEKS Math Course Placement
Mathematics Incentive Program (MIP)
Students who studied calculus in high school or elsewhere, but did not receive AP credit, or any other college credit for a calculus course should be able to start with Calculus II rather than repeating calculus. That’s why the MIP was invented.
Students who place into MATH:1860 Calculus II with a score of 15 or higher on the Advanced Math Placement test and receive a grade of B or higher in the course will automatically receive 4 semester hour credits for Calculus I in addition to the credits earned for Calculus II. The credit is ungraded but counts toward the hours required for graduation. MIP credit is counted as UI and CLAS residence credit.
For more information, including additional policies and how to apply for MIP credit, please see the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences website.
Placement policies
Students are encouraged to retake the placement test if they do not place into the course they want to take. There is no fee to retake a placement test. It is recommended that students spend some time reviewing material from previous courses before retesting.
Once registered for an ALEKS math placement test, students have access to 5 placement tests, so students can retake the ALEKS math placement test 4 times without requesting permission for additional tests.
Students may repeat the Advanced Math Placement test once without special permission. If additional attempts are needed, students should email Amanda Marr or the ITS Help Desk.
Mathematics placement tests are the most accurate if they are taken soon before enrolling in a mathematics course. Mathematics courses build on one another, and students who have not taken a mathematics course recently may find that they do not recall all of the material learned previously. Therefore, students whose mathematics placement scores are older than one year are strongly encouraged to retake the appropriate mathematics placement test and review their mathematics skills before enrolling in a math course.
Students who have transfer or AP credit for a course at or above the course recommended by a mathematics placement test may be eligible to take the recommended course without being charged duplication or regression.
Students who have credit for MATH:1850 or MATH:1860 must take the Advanced Math Placement test in order to determine whether duplication or regression may be waived.
If a student has transfer credit for a course two levels or more above their recommended placement, the student may enroll in an intermediate course. Duplication/regression may be waived until the student completes a math course equivalent to the transfer credit. However, it is recommended that the student retake the placement test first before determining which course to take.
For example, a student has transfer credit for Calculus I (MATH:1850) but the ALEKS math placement test recommends College Algebra (MATH:1005). The student may take Elementary Functions (MATH:1020) and Calculus I (MATH:1850) and may have duplication/regression waived for both. The student could also start with College Algebra and receive a waiver for regression for that course as well.
Students who wish to be granted a waiver for duplication or regression should contact Amanda Marr. The Department of Mathematics will then review the case and determine whether or not to grant a waiver of duplication or regression.
For accommodations on placement tests, students first need to register with Student Disability Services (SDS), if they have not already done so. For more information on how to register with SDS, please visit Student Disability Services. If students have further questions, they should discuss their situation with their academic advisor.
Contact us
Yangbo Ye
Amanda Marr
UI Evaluation and Examination Service
Learn more about mathematics placement tests, including links to the ALEKS test and Advanced Math Placement Test on the new students website.