Mathematics Placement Test (1 hour, 15 minutes)

The mathematics placement test is required for all new students.

The mathematics placement test is a multiple-choice examination. Calculators are not permitted during the test. The items range in difficulty from basic arithmetic and algebra to calculus readiness, and include the following:

  • Arithmetic operations
  • Decimals and fractions
  • Percents and ratios
  • Linear functions and inequalities
  • Algebraic operations on numbers and polynomials
  • Solving simultaneous, linear, and quadratic equations
  • Polynomials and polynomial equations
  • Exponents and logarithms
  • Inequalities and absolute values
  • Graphing
  • Word problems
  • Trigonometric functions and identities

The test result will determine the appropriate level of mathematics course(s) for students to start with.

Preparing for the Test

Students are encouraged to review basic arithmetic and algebra skills so that their test scores accurately reflect their ability and enable their advisor to determine the appropriate course. Here is some suggested reading for a more extensive review:

  1. Integrated Arithmetic and Algebra, 2nd edition, by Bill E. Jordan and William P. Palow, Addison Wesley
  2. College Algebra and Trigonometry, 7th edition, by Raymond A. Barnett, Michael R. Ziegler, and Karl E. Byleen, McGraw Hill
  3. College Algebra, 7th edition, by Michael Sullivan, Prentice Hall
  4. College Algebra and Trigonometry, 7th edition, by Michael Sullivan, Prentice Hall
  5. College Algebra and Trigonometry - Basics through Precalculus, by John Schiller and Mary Wurster

Math placement review items (PDF: 59KB) contains 37 review items that were developed by the Temple University Mathematics Department to help you specifically identify and review the concepts and skills needed for the current mathematics placement test. The items, which reflect the core content areas of the test, examine students' current grasp of important mathematical concepts and techniques. After you answer the review items, look at the answer key (PDF: 57KB) to see the outcome and to determine what areas you need to review further.

Retaking the Test

Students are allowed to retake the mathematics placement test only once throughout their academic career at all Temple University campuses. Students who are concerned that the test score does not properly reflect their mathematics knowledge and skills are encouraged to contact the AAC.