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Math Placement for New Fall Admits

In order to earn a degree, every student must complete at least one course in General Education area B4 (Math and Quantitative Reasoning)–some majors require multiple GEB4 courses. Measuring your readiness allows us to determine your appropriate placement, reduces frustrations and academic difficulties, and increases chances of success.

The process begins with you completing the Math Placement survey (via the link on your To-Do list). Shortly after you complete the survey, your To-Do list will update with action items detailing your next steps. These may include sending official documentation of test scores, official transcripts, or taking a diagnostic Math Placement Exam (the MAPE).


What do you need to do?

  • Step 1: Accept your offer of admissions via your MyCalPoly portal
  • Step 2: Complete the Math Placement Survey via the link on your To-Do list in your portal.
  • Step 3: Check your email and To-Do list for information regarding your preliminary placement after one business day.
  • Step 4: Follow the instructions in your email to either send official documents (test scores, transcripts) to Cal Poly or take the Math Placement Exam.


The Math Placement Exam (the MAPE)

The MAPE is a diagnostic math placement exam which can be used to demonstrate eligibility up to Calculus I. If the Math Placement Survey indicates that you can benefit from taking the MAPE, you can do so via the online proctoring service, Proctor U, without charge until Aug 31st. Appointments must be scheduled 72 hours in advance of your desired test time. See How to take the MAPE exam.

Students seeking test accommodations must have them approved by the Disability Resource Center prior to registering for the exam.


Additional Questions

Why do I have to take the MAPE?

You don’t, but will want to if your current placement requires the completion of prerequisite coursework in order to be eligible for classes required by your major. The MAPE is your opportunity to advance your placement; however, it can place you no further than Calculus I and will not confer college credit. Also, note that it cannot harm your current eligibility, it can only help to place you further. 

Do my high school courses count toward placement?

No individual high school course will count toward placement, but your overall GPA may make you eligible to take Precalculus. To be Calculus ready, a student must submit a sufficient score on one of the various standardized tests we use for placement or transfer credit in College Algebra from another college/university or pass the Precalculus MAPE. For more detailed information on placement please see How does math placement work?

Can I be ready without having to take the MAPE?

If you have test scores (AP, SAT, ACT, etc) or transfer credit from another college/university that have yet to be received, or expect to have such scores/credit, you may be eligible to meet your major’s Area B4 GE requirement without having to take the MAPE or enroll in prerequisite coursework and should send those scores/credits as soon as possible. If you are uncertain or not confident in the outcome of the test/class, we do recommend that you take the MAPE.


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