Placement testing

Placement tests are designed to assess your level of mastery in certain subjects so that you do not have to take courses you don't need.

Do I need to take a placement test? If you are planning to take a math, chemistry, foreign language and/or music history and theory course at the UW you will probably need to take a placement test. 

Chemistry

Chemistry placement test is required to register for any chemistry course at the UW. 

  • Any score on the placement test is accepted to register for CHEM 110 or 120
  • 11 out of 26 on the placement test will place into CHEM 142 and 143
  • CHEM 110 or a AP score of 1 (or higher) is accepted in lieu of the placement test
  • Honors general chemistry placement is not offered online

Learn more about the different course options and placement

Math

Math Guided Self-Placement (GSP) is encouraged for those who want to enroll in MATH 111, MATH 120, or MATH 124. If you are unsure if you need to take the Guided Self-Placement, you should consider the following.  

  • Review degree requirements for you intended major to determine which MATH course or sequence for courses is required. 
  • If you are interested in a program that requires college math — this includes engineering, sciences (biology, chemistry, etc.), premed, business, and psychology; and
  • You don't already have college credit for algebra or calculus, or a Calculus Advanced Placement (AP) score of 2 or higher, or an International Baccalaureate (IB) Mathematics (Higher Level) score of 5 or higher.

Learn more about the different course options and placement

Foreign Language 

Foreign language test is required if you plan to continue the foreign language you took in high school.

If you already have college credit in that language you can continue on with the next course; no placement test is required.

  • All majors in the College of Arts and Sciences, College of Education, and the School of Social Work require evidence of proficiency in a foreign language, which can be demonstrated in several ways, including taking foreign language through the third college quarter or placement by the UW into the fourth college quarter.
  • Majors in most other colleges, including Engineering and Business, don't require foreign language past the two high school years required for UW admission. You may want to talk with an adviser about whether you should take a foreign language. If you plan to continue your foreign language but not right away, you should probably wait and take the placement test just before you resume your study to get the most accurate placement.

Incoming students: plan to take your placement test before attending your A&O.

Learn more about the different course options and placement

Music History and Theory

Contact the music department to determine whether you should take music placement tests. These tests are usually taken only by prospective music majors.