What is ALEKS?
ALEKS is a powerful artificial-intelligence based assessment tool that zeros in on the strengths and weaknesses of a student’s mathematical knowledge, reports its findings to the student, and then provides the student with a learning environment for improving this knowledge to an appropriate level for course placement.
The ALEKS Math Assessment ensures students’ readiness for particular mathematics courses at St. Edward's University. Since these courses are demanding, it is important for students to begin in the course most likely to lead to success. Students will not be permitted to take a course unless they have demonstrated readiness. After completing the initial assessment, students who wish to improve their skills may use the included learning modules.
Who must take ALEKS?
All entering first-year students, regardless of AP, IB, dual enrollment, and CLEP credits are required to take the assessment.
New transfer students and some continuing students may be directed to take the ALEKS assessment by their academic adviser.
Students may not take mathematics courses at St. Edward's without demonstrating readiness.
When do students take ALEKS?
Students beginning classes in the Fall semester may begin the assessment May 1 and are required to complete their first assessment one week prior to orientation, or by July 1, whichever date comes first. Students may still work within the learning modules after pre-registration to attempt to place into a higher-level course, up until the end of the add-drop period (usually Friday of the first week of classes). Students beginning classes in the Spring semester may begin the assessment November 1 and are required to complete their first assessment one week prior to orientation, or by January 1, whichever date comes first.
How long will the assessment take?
The assessment will ask up to 30 questions. You should plan to complete the assessment in one 2-3 hour sitting. If you do not complete the assessment in one sitting, you will have 48 hours to complete it before the assessment is reset.
The only purpose of the assessment is to give an accurate measure of your current mathematical skills so that you will have a better opportunity to be successful in your courses. There is no benefit to inflating or deflating your abilities on the assessment. Taking a class that is not appropriate for your current level of mathematical knowledge could delay your graduation. Therefore, while you are taking the assessment, do not consult any other source for help (friends, family, internet searches, textbooks, etc.), and do your honest best.
In addition, as a member of the St. Edward’s community, you are expected to uphold the Academic Integrity policy, which include doing honest academic work.
What you need
Your SEU user id and password
A pencil and paper
A reliable internet connection
2-3 hours of time
A space conducive to doing your best work
All other resources are provided by ALEKS
You should NOT use your own calculator. If one is needed to answer a question, ALEKS will provide one automatically for that question.
You should NOT use other resources such as textbooks, websites, or friends. Use of non-permitted resources may result in you being required to take a course for which you are not prepared.
What to expect
This is a free response assessment; there are no multiple choice questions. Before you take the assessment, ALEKS will present a short tutorial on how to enter answers, how to use the graphing utilities, and how to use the built in calculator that will be offered when appropriate. TAKE YOUR TIME WITH THIS TUTORIAL AND BE SURE YOU UNDERSTAND HOW THESE FEATURES WORK.
The assessment will be available on May 15, 2016. Incoming freshmen will be notified via their HillStart pre-orientation checklists. Transfer students, watch for communication from your advising specialist.
ALEKS scores cannot be interpreted in the same way as exam grades. Scores of 46 or higher reflect adequate preparation for college-level math.
Course Placement Scores
You should select one of the courses below only if the course is appropriate for your degree program. If your degree does not require one of the courses listed below, you can meet your General Education requirement with other courses. Your academic adviser will help you select appropriate courses when you are building your schedule. For first-year students, this conversation will occur at New Student Orientation.
Minimum ALEKS Score
Course you are permitted to take
|0||MATH 0309 Basic Mathematics|
|46||MATH 1312 Mathematics for the Liberal Arts or MATH 1314 College Algebra|
|61||MATH 2312 Precalculus|
|76||MATH 2413 Calculus I OR MATH 2315 Discrete Mathematics|
You will not be permitted to take a math course that is above your readiness level (even if you are only one point away). If you want to place into a higher-level course, you may use ALEKS learning modules to improve your skills and retake the assessment.
What courses might you take?
|Intended Major||Likely courses|
All Humanities Majors: literature, languages, communication, journalism, graphic design, religious studies, philosophy, visual and performing arts.
All Behavioral and Social Science majors: psychology, sociology, criminology, criminal justice, history, environmental science and policy, global studies.
MATH 1312 Mathematics for the Liberal Arts
MATH 1314 College Algebra
All Business majors: accounting, finance, business, international business, management, marketing, information technology, digital media management, interactive games management, interactive games studies, entrepreneurship, (economics requires calculus).
MATH 2312 Precalculus
All Natural Sciences majors: biology, biochemistry, bioinformatics, chemistry, environmental chemistry, forensic chemistry, forensic science, math, math education, computer science, engineering, medical laboratory science. (computer information science requires precalculus)
Secondary Education (high school, junior high, middle school) majors in science or mathematics.
MATH 2413 Calculu I
You will not be permitted to take a course that is above your readiness level (even if you are only one point away). If you want to place into a higher-level course, you may use ALEKS learning modules to improve your skills and retake the assessment. You must qualify for a course before scheduling it.
You may retake the assessment up to two more times after using the learning modules. The vast majority of students who use these learning modules improve their scores on each subsequent assessment, and 90% of students move up by at least one course. The third placement assessment is the final assessment available to you prior to the fall semester.
You must wait 48 hours between assessments, and spend at least 5 hours using the learning modules before taking your second assessment, and an additional 5 hours using the learning modules before taking each additional assessment. Students who spend at least 15 hours in a learning module show the most improvement in their scores.
To access the learning modules, return to the ALEKS Assessment through the link you were initially provided.
Need help deciding?
Your score is used to help you start in the course where you have the best chance to succeed. Students who are not successful in their first math course are highly unlikely to persist in engineering and science majors. If you need calculus, starting where you place is the best path to success.
It is always in your best interest to improve your math skills, so you are encouraged to use the learning modules regardless of your score. If you need to consult with an adviser about your decision, email
advising [at] lists.stedwards.edu.
New first-year students will work with an academic adviser to identify appropriate math courses at New Student Orientation. Questions about course selection will be addressed then.
Transfer students and continuing students should contact their assigned adviser with questions.
New first-year students will be invited to attend a New Student Orientation session. You will speak with advisers during orientation who will discuss your ALEKS score, your academic interests, and your academic background with you. Advisers will help you schedule appropriate courses during orientation.
Transfer students and continuing students should work with their assigned academic adviser.
In cases where placement differs from credit (for example, a student has been awarded transfer credit for precalculus but still places into precalculus) it is highly recommended that students use the learning modules to improve their score until they place into their desired course. Ultimate course selection in these cases is to be determined by the student and their academic adviser, with the understanding that it is inadvisable to register for a course in which one is unprepared to succeed.
Students admitted as first-year freshmen are required to take the ALEKS math assessment before pre-registration, regardless of AP or transfer credit status. Any relevant AP or transfer credits will be considered after the initial ALEKS assessment is completed.
Students admitted as transfer students will be notified by their academic adviser whether they are required or recommended to take the ALEKS math assessment, or exempted from it, based on transfer credits awarded in mathematics courses.
No student will be placed into a mathematics course on the basis of high school transcripts or SAT/ACT scores.
Credit by Exam equivalencies may be found here: http://think.stedwards.edu/avpacademicaffairs/creditexam
ALEKS is only available to new students and must be completed prior to attending orientation.
For students starting classes in Fall 2016:
Complete the test between May 15, 2016 and one week prior to your scheduled orientation date, but no later than July 1, 2016. Access to ALEKS assessments expires April 30, 2017. Course registration will not be adjusted based on assessments completed after the drop/add period. Access to ALEKS learning modules expires 6 months from the date of first access.
First-year students must complete the assessment before they can register for fall courses.
This is not a timed test. The assessment will ask up to 30 questions. You may take as long as you need to answer the questions, as long as the assessment is completed within 48 hours of starting.
If you need accommodations, please contact Student Disability Services Office at St. Edward’s University
Hours (Central Time): Monday – Friday, 8am – 5 pm
Campus Location: Moody Hall, Suite 155
Contact: SDS [at] stedwards.edu or (512) 448-8561
If you encounter an issue logging into Canvas or myHilltop, contact the SEU IT Support desk: support [at] stedwards.edu or 512-448-8443.
If you encounter a technical issue within ALEKS, contact ALEKS Higher Education Customer Support:
Hours (Eastern Time):
Sunday, 4:00pm to 1:00am
Monday – Thursday, 7:00am to 1:00am
Friday, 7:00am to 9:00pm
Telephone: (714) 619-7090
If you need to consult with an adviser prior to orientation, send an email with your initial question to
advising [at] lists.stedwards.edu.