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Department of Mathematics & Statistics

Mathematics Placement Examination

Frequently asked questions

Please take a quick look at the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) for the exam now, and if you have a question or concern after taking the test, look at it again. This short FAQ covers the vast majority of the questions people ask about the test after taking it. The answers are covered in more detail on this page, but are frequently overlooked.

On-Line Participation

The Mathematics Placement Examination, which formerly was only available on-campus and during orientation, can now be completed on-line by entering freshman and transfer students prior to coming to Texas Tech.

Entering students are strongly encouraged to complete the Mathematics Placement Examination before coming to their summer orientation.

Mechanics for Taking the Mathematics Placement Examination On-Line

The administration and scooring of the Mathematics Placement Examination is done through the Placement Gateway. (A link is at the bottom of this page.) The Placement Gateway also reports the results of the student's previous attempts at taking the placement exam, so a student may return to the Placement Gateway as needed to see his or her scores. The transfer of the Mathematics Placement Examination scores to the Student Record System (SRS) is performed nightly. The following information fields and cautions relate to both the administration and scoring and to the nightly SRS record updates.

The web form directs the student to the eRaider Sign-in page where the student will need to supply the following information:
FieldRequired Information
eRaider Username
eRaider Password
Note 1: When a student is admitted to Texas Tech, that student will receive information from the university about his/her eRaider account. The student's eRaider account provides access to a variety of electronic services (registration, transcripts, computer access, etc.) including authentification for taking the Mathematics Placement Exam.

After a student supplies the authentification information, the student will be taken to the Placement Gateway where he or she may see any scores so far, or (if applicable) proceed to the Placement Exam server to take the placement examination. A new version is generated for each attempt.

The examination consists of two major sections as follows:
SectionExam ProblemsContent Area
Algebra I, Algebra II
Trigonometry, Analytical Geometry
A calculator may be used while taking the placement examination. The primary focus of the Mathematics Placement Examination is on assessing arithmetic and algebraic manipulative skills and not on calculator or computer proficiency. The examination is structured so that while calculator proficiency may help a student with some of the questions assessing arithmetic skills, successful completion of the exam will reflect how well a student has retained his or her algebra skills.

Each student must complete Section I. Successfully completing Section I allows a student to begin with Comtemporary Mathematics (Math 1300), College Algebra (Math 1320), Introductory Mathematical Analysis (Math 1330) or Precalculus (Math 1550). A student who has not retained a sufficient mastery of his or her algebra skills to pass Section I will be directed to an appropriate preparatory mathematics course.

Students whose majors require them to take Calculus I (Math 1451), need to take Section II. Typically, this requirement falls to students majoring in Engineering, pre-Engineering, the physical sciences, Mathematics, pre-Med or (the dual major) Architecture-Civil Engineering.

Submission and Grading of the Mathematics Placement Examination

When a student finishes answering the placement examination questions and clicks the "grade test" button, the program which administers the placement examinations reports a raw score, giving the number of correct answers out of 59 (even if a student does not need to take the second part of the test). For registration purposes, the student needs a placement code which is a number from 1 to 7. To see the placement code, the student should return to the placement gateway. At the bottom of the page is a summary of all placement exam results so far. If the most recent test grade is not there, the "grade tests" button should be clicked.

The student should print the resulting page and retain it for his or her records and for advisement purposes.

Cautions Related to the Web Form and SRS Record Update

Caution 1: A student may retake the placement examination, but not twice on the same date. The SRS record update, which posts the student's scores, can store only one set of examination scores on any given date for a student taking the placement examination. While a student can access the exam web form multiple times, the SRS record update will process the first submission and reject all subsequent submissions for that date.

Caution 2: A student may take the placement examination on-line only twice. The SRS record update, which posts the student's scores, is programmed to allow only two on-line sets of examination scores for the placement examination. While a student can access the on-line exam form multiple times, the SRS record update will process the first two on-line submissions and reject all subsequent on-line submissions.

Exam Web Form Location (URL)

The on-line version of the Mathematics Placement Examination is accessed through the following link:

Click Here to access the Placement Gateway.