Mandatory Placement Exams

Mandatory Placement Exams

Incoming freshmen and transfer students are required to take two placement exams: the Online Math Placement Exam (ALEKS) and a Foreign Language Placement Exam (FLPE).

There is a non-refundable $54.00 IU Bloomington Online Placement Exam fee which covers both the ALEKS and FLPE. This fee will appear on the student's bursar bill the first time the student takes an online placement exam (either the ALEKS or the FLPE) during a testing year (March 1 – last day of February), and it will cover any additional such exams taken during that particular testing year.

These exams should be competed at least 72 hours prior to your New Student Orientation (NSO) advising appoinment. During this appointment you will receive your exam scores from your advisor, who will help you interpret them and determine your math and foreign language placement levels. Failing to complete these exams 72 hours prior to your NSO advising appointment may interfere with your appointment and course registration.

Transfer students with IU Bloomington credit for certain levels of coursework may be exempt from one or both of the required exams. Please check your Transfer Credit Report prior to your NSO advising appointment to verify any IUB credits you may have earned through your previous coursework. More information about IU's Credit Transfer Service is available on the IU Office of Admissions website.

Online Math Placement Exam (ALEKS)

The Online Math Placement Exam (ALEKS) assesses the student’s knowledge of mathematics concepts at the undergraduate level. It is taken unproctored at http://mathplacement.indiana.edu. The Online Math Placement Exam must be taken at least once, but you may choose to take it up to three times. The exam should be completed in a single sitting without interruption. You cannot pause the exam and return to it later. There is no time limit for the Online Math Placement Exam, although all testing must be completed in a continuous 48 hour time frame. We suggest that you allow 90 minutes to complete the exam.

The Online Math Placement Exam must be taken without assistance. Calculators may not be used on the exam. Dictionaries, books, notes, the internet, websites, and other tools should not be used during the exam. Please do not ask others for assistance during the exam. Otherwise, the test scores may not accurately reflect your knowledge and skill level, and you may be placed into a mathematics course that exceeds your capability.

A 24-hour waiting period is required between testing attempts, and the online tutorials must be completed before retesting can commence. Students can complete available study modules at a different time from when they are actually testing. There is no additional fee for retesting.

The student will receive their test scores from their academic advisor, who will help them to identify and register for the most appropriate math coursework. Exam results are used for course placement only. No academic credit is awarded.

Information about how to interpret Online Math Placement Exam scores is available on the Department of Mathematics ALEKS Math Placement Recommendations website.

All freshman and transfer students are required to take the Online Math Placement Exam. Students with Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, or SAT Subject Test credit are still required to take the Online Math Placement Exam. Exemptions are allowed only under the following circumstances:

Students with intended business majors must have IU Bloomington credit for one of the following options to be exempt from the Online Math Placement Exam:

  1. MATH-M 118 and MATH-M 119
  2. MATH-M 118 and MATH-M 211

All other students must have one of the following options to be exempt from the Online Math Placement Exam:

  1. MATH-M 118 and MATH-M 119
  2. MATH-M 211

If you plan to enroll in CHEM-C 117, CHEM-S 117, MATH-T 101, or EDUC-N 101, you must take the Online Math Placement Exam regardless of your intended area of study.

If a student’s transfer credits have not been articulated for these particular IU Bloomington course(s), the student must plan to take the Online Math Placement Exam prior to New Student Orientation. New students will receive information on their New Student Orientation Confirmation page from the Office of First Year Experience Programs regarding scheduled testing opportunities and any required registration procedures. Please see the IUB Credit Transfer Service website to see how courses from previous institutions will transfer.

Academic credit for Calculus may be awarded through a proctored exam taken during New Student Orientation. Additional information about the Calculus Exemption Exam is available on the Optional Exemption Exams page of our website.

Foreign Language Placement Exam (FLPE)

The Online Foreign Language Placement Exam (FLPE) tests a student’s current knowledge of particular foreign languages. It is required of all freshman and most transfer students at the undergraduate level regardless of Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) scores or their academic plans. A student is exempt from the FLPE only if he/she has never studied a foreign language. Transfer students may be exempt if certain conditions are met.

The FLPE is taken unproctored and may be accessed at http://foreignlanguageplacement.indiana.edu. Each language exam may only be taken once. A student may take more than one FLPE in a different language if the student has knowledge of that language. The exam must be completed in a single sitting without interruption. You cannot pause the exam and return to it later. Time limits vary from 60 to 90 minutes, and some exams include a listening section.

The FLPE must be taken without assistance. Dictionaries, books, notes, the internet, websites, and other tools should not be used during the exam. Please do not ask others for assistance during the exam. Otherwise, the test scores may not accurately reflect your knowledge and skill level, and you may be placed into a foreign language course that exceeds your capability.