Math Placement for New First-Year Students

VCU requires all new incoming first-year students to take a math placement test in order to determine which math class you should register for in your first semester of enrollment. There is no charge for new incoming first-year students to take the math placement test.

The Test

VCU uses ALEKS PPL to determine a student’s math placement score. ALEKS PPL is a web-based program that uses artificial intelligence to map a student’s strengths and weaknesses. The placement assessment generally takes 60-90 minutes to complete approximately 30 questions. After completing the math placement assessment, students receive their math placement score and it is uploaded to their student record.

There is a two hour time limit on un-proctored ALEKS PPL assessments. If you exceed the two hour time limit, your assessment will be stopped and your score is discarded. It is as if you never took the assessment. There is no way to recover a score. You will need to retake the assessment and ensure you submit the assessment before the two hour time limit expires.

Login to ALEKS PPL

I'm done... what's next?

Satisfied With Your Score?

Write down your placement score. You will need your VCU math placement test score to complete your registration survey. Your score will be uploaded to your student record within 24-48 hours so that you can register for the math class for which you qualified.

Unsatisfied With Your Score?

If your score isn't where you expected it to be, you can complete an individualized prep and learning module in ALESK PPL to refresh your knowledge. You will then have the opportunity to take the assessment again and improve your placement score. We expect students that use ALEKS PPL conscientiously to improve their math placement score by one course!

Score Interpretation

ALEKS scores should be interpreted with the assistance of an academic adviser. The math department has established the following cut scores for VCU courses. Students should consult with their adviser to determine which course they should register for to avoid taking unnecessary courses.

ALEKS PPL Score VCU Math Placement Equivalent Score Course(s) You Are Eligible to Enroll In *
0 - 44 131 MATH 129 or MATH 131
45 - 59 141 MATH 141 or STAT 208
60 - 60 139 MATH 139, MATH 141, or STAT 208
61 - 75 151 MATH 151, STAT 210 or BUSN (formerly SCMA/MGMT) 171
76 - 100 200 MATH 200, MATH 211, CMSC 255, BUSN (formerly SCMA/MGMT) 212 or STAT 212

* Make selection in consultation with your academic adviser

Please Note

  • The mathematics placement test is a prerequisite for only the above introductory courses. All other mathematics, statistics and computer science courses require previous coursework.
  • The mathematics placement test score indicates a student’s appropriate level of introductory course and does not earn a student credit for any course. It does not satisfy any requirement for graduation.
  • Math credits are awarded for the successful completion of VCU math courses, transfer credits or satisfactory AP/IB test scores.

Your math placement test score is valid for one year. Students who do not register for a math class within one year of receiving a math placement test score will need to retake the assessment to receive a new test score.


If you encounter problems with ALEKS PPL or have any questions please contact the Math Department at