We strongly encourage you to complete any required placement exams prior to meeting with your academic advisor so they will be able to review your scores and make sure you register for the right course(s). Placement exams may be required or recommended in any of the following areas: English, math, chemistry, and/or world language. All placement exams are administered online.
- Do I need to do placement exams?
English and Math (may be required): To determine if either of these exam(s) are required, go to your To Do List. If required, the exam will appear on the To Do list. If not required, the exam does not appear at all. If you have questions on whether either exam is required, contact the Office of Admissions at (574) 520-4839 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chemistry (optional): This exam will not show up your To Do List. However, it is highly recommended for many sciences and health sciences majors. Scroll down for further information.
World Language (optional): This exam will not show up on your To Do List. It is recommended for students who have previously studied French, German, Japanese or Spanish. Scroll down for further information.
Math Exam (ALEKS)
The mathematics exam (ALEKS) is administered online.
Most students are required to take ALEKS. However, you are waived if:
- You have transferred in a math course from another college or university that is equivalent to a 100-level or above math course at IU South Bend;
- You took an IU South Bend math course as a high school student and received college credit for it;
- You received a passing score on an Advanced Placement (AP) exam.
- You took ALEKS at another college or university within a year.
The English exam is taken online via the Canvas system. You will have 75 minutes to write an essay on one of two essay prompts provided.
You do not need to take the exam if:
- You decide to take ENG-W130 to build reading and writing skills before taking ENG-W131. You do not need a placement score to enroll in ENG-W130.
- You already have ENG-W131 credit because:
- You have transferred in the equivalent of IU South Bend course ENG-W131 from another college or university.
- You took ENG-W131 as a high school student and received credit for it.
- You received a score of 4 or above on the Advance Placement (AP) exam for English composition.
Students may take the English Placement Exam up to three times per testing session, provided they have not already enrolled in a First-Year Writing class. The Fall testing session runs from mid-October through early January and the Spring/Summer session runs from early March through late August. Once a student has enrolled in a First-Year Writing class, that signifies acceptance of the placement score, and he or she may not retake the placement exam.
Note: students will also do a diagnostic writing exercise on the first day of their First-Year Writing class, at which point the instructor will either confirm the accuracy of the placement or recommend moving the student to the appropriate level.
- Am I required to take this exam?
No, this exam is not mandatory. However, if your major is listed below, you are encouraged to take the chemistry placement exam if you did well in a recent high school chemistry course. If you score a 51 on both the math and chemistry exams, then you will be waived from taking a semester of chemistry (CHEM C101/C121).
Clinical Lab Sciences
If you are uncertain whether you should take this exam, you can discuss it with your academic advisor when you meet with them.
- Where and when do I take this exam?
The Chemistry Placement Exam is administered online through ALEKS (there is a fee of around $30 payable directly to ALEKS*). The exam may be taken at any time of day on any computer with internet access. It should be completed prior to attending New Student Orientation, when you register for classes. You have several weeks of access to ALEKS from the day you register for it. At the time of this posting there are 6-week options available for $25 and 11-week options available for $35.
*Access charged to your student account may also be available through the IU South Bend Bookstore. Please contact the bookstore for availability.
- Is this related to the ALEKS Math exam?
No. The Chemistry Placement Exam and the Mathematics Placement Exam are separate exams even though they are both administered through an ALEKS system.
World Language Studies
Students who have previously studied French, German, Japanese or Spanish should take the World Language Studies Placement Examination before enrolling in a language course at IU South Bend. The exam will place you into a course at the appropriate level.Continue to World Language Studies Exam
If you have any questions, please contact the Gateway Information Center.