What is the math placement assessment through ALEKS?

The Math Placement assessment through ALEKS covers a broad spectrum of pre-calculus material.

The ALEKS system is fully automated and the ALEKS assessment is adaptive.

The first questions asked will be drawn from across the pre-calculus curriculum, and may be too easy or too hard.

As the assessment proceeds, your answers will be used to give the system an idea of your abilities, and it will gradually focus the questioning in an appropriate way.

By the end of the assessment you should find the questions generally challenging but reasonable for your knowledge level.

The length of the assessment runs from 20 to 35 questions. It is likely that you will be asked questions on material you have not yet learned. On such questions it is appropriate to answer, “I don’t know.” On any question that you have familiarity with, however, it is important to do your best. “I don’t know” is interpreted by ALEKS to mean that you do not know the topic, and this will be reflected in the assessment results. If you do not do your best on the assessment, ALEKS will underestimate your abilities and this will affect your placement recommendation.

Who is required to take the math assessment through ALEKS?

All new incoming and transfer students who plan to enroll in a math or statistics course at Iowa State are required to take the math placement assessment through ALEKS. Students should contact their academic college prior to orientation if they believe they have fulfilled their math requirements.

How do I access the math placement assessment through ALEKS?

The ALEKS placement assessment is available through your Admissions MyAccount.

Additionally, you may login to your Iowa State sign-on dashboard and search for “ALEKS”.

You can contact ALEKS by email through: https://mhedu.force.com/aleks/s/

A Customer Support number for ALEKS is 800-258-2374.

How long is my ALEKS score valid for? Can I use ALEKS from other institutions to place into Iowa State University’s courses?

The ALEKS score is valid for one year from the date taken or one year prior to the advising appointment. Scores from other Iowa Regents Universities and Community Colleges are also accepted for one year. ALEKS scores can be accepted from any institution which uses ALEKS PPL.

The student is responsible for providing documentation of their previous score. Students should be prepared to provide their advisor a screenshot of their previous score, as Iowa State University does not have access to records taken through a different institution. Be sure the student’s name is visible in the screen shot.

Do I need to take the assessment if I have AP credit or transfer credit in calculus?

Yes. Even though your AP scores and transfer credits will be used to give you credit for the corresponding course, the results of the assessment will be used in your placement. If your score does not indicate mastery of prerequisite material, you will be strongly advised to retake a course for which you have credit to ensure that you are properly prepared for the following course.