Math Placement Test

Radford University students who wish to take a course in the calculus sequence should take the Math Placement Test to determine which is the best math course to start in. Certain majors listed below require courses in this sequence.

New students: Please take the placement test as soon as possible! We need the results of your test with enough time before you attend Quest to preregister you for the appropriate course for your fall schedule.

There are three placement levels based on the prerequisite courses in the calculus sequence:

Level I: MATH 125 Precalculus I
Level II: MATH 126 Business Calculus or MATH 138 Precalculus II or MATH 168 Calculus I with Integrated Precalculus I
Level III: MATH 171 Calculus and Analytic Geometry I

MATH 125 is the prerequisite for MATH 126, 138, 168, and MATH 138 is the prerequisite for MATH 171. However, students who need MATH 171 but are not placed into MATH 171 are recommended to take MATH 168:169 instead of MATH 138 and MATH 171. 

Students in majors who require a course in this sequence but who do not take the placement test will be placed into MATH 125.

Format of the Math Placement Test

The Math Placement Test is in two parts, Part I: Algebra and Part II: Trigonometry. Passing Part I will allow a course at Placement Level II and will allow you to take Part II. Passing Part II will allow enrollment in MATH 171. Other factors such as SAT Math scores or grades in high school math courses may be used in conjunction with this test for placement. 

Both parts are timed and may only be attempted once. Part I has 25 multiple choice questions and a 60-minute time limit, and Part II has 20 multiple choice questions and a 45-minute time limit. Once started a part must be completed in one sitting, but you do not need to take Part II immediately after completing Part I.

How to take the Math Placement Test

The Math Placement Test is adminstered as a course in D2L. Any admitted student may self-register for the test:

  1. Log into D2L using your Radford username and password.
  2. Select the Discovery tab.
  3. Search for Math Placement Test either in the Search field or by looking for it in the list of courses. 
  4. Select it and then click Enroll in Course. The course will tell you how to take the test. Based on the results of the test and your major, you will be placed into one of MATH 125; 126, 138, or 168; or 171.

Who Should Take the Math Placement Test?

Students with credit (including transfer credit, dual enrollment credit, or AP credit) for any of MATH 125, 138, 168, 169, or 171 should not take the placement test and should take the next class in the sequence based on the credits earned. Students with credit for MATH 126 Business Calculus but who need credit for Calculus I, should contact Dr. Neil Sigmon, chair of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, for placement into MATH 169 without taking MATH 168. 

Majors that require a course in the calculus sequence: Mathematics, Computer Science, Cybersecurity, Information Science and Systems, Physics, Chemistry, Geology, and Economics. Minors that require a course in the calculus sequence: Mathematics, Statistics, Computer Science, Astronomy, and Physics.

Some students in other majors such as Biology, Geospatial Science, Accounting, Finance, Management, Marketing, Psychology, Allied Health Science, and Interdiciplinary Studies--Middle Education, Mathematics Concentration often take MATH 138 or a calculus course. Students in these majors should talk with your advisor to see if one of these courses is the right choice for you.