Placement Exams

Do I need to take a placement exam?

It depends! Your Math placement will automatically be determined by your SAT/ACT scores based on the following:

  • To qualify for Math 112 or 115, you must have a minimum Math SAT score of 530, or Math ACT score of 22 
  • To qualify for Math 130, you must have a minimum Math SAT score of 570, or Math ACT score of 25
  • To qualify for Math 150, you must have a minimum Math SAT score of 600, or Math ACT score of 26

If you are not satisfied with this placement, then take an online math placement exam, as outlined in the tab below.

To be placed in a Foreign Language, you MUST complete either a waiver of placement or an online placement exam. 

  • If you are not satisfied with your SAT/AP results and would like to be placed in a higher-level math, you should take the placement exam, as outlined below.
  • If you would like to take a lower level math course than you are placed in, take the placement exam and preference your desired math course on the First-Year Advising Questionnaire.

Requirements for Majors

What major (or majors) are you considering?

  • Keep in mind that many first-year students either haven't chosen a major or change their minds later.
  • If you are not certain about which major you want, Math 115 (College Algebra) is more flexible than Math 112 (Investigations in Modern Mathematics).
  • For students who are certain that they will not go into one of the majors where Math 115 or higher is required, Math 112 can be an attractive alternative to Math 115 as it covers interesting topics you may not have learned before such as mathematics of voting, encryption and games of chance.
  • Also, Math 150 (Calculus 1) is more flexible than Math 130 (Survey of Calculus) but requires some knowledge of trigonometry.

According to your choice of major(s), you will eventually need to take:

  • Biology: Math 150 or 130
  • Business (including Economics): Math 130 or 150
  • Chemistry: Math 151
  • Computer Science: *Math 151
  • Engineering: *Math 250
  • Environmental Studies: *Math 115 (Math 130 or 150 is also recommended)
  • Liberal Studies (for future K-8 teachers): *Math 115
  • Marine Sciences: Math 150 (Math 151 is also recommended)
  • Mathematics: *Math 250
  • Physics: Math 250
  • Psychology: Math 115 (Math 130 is also strongly recommended)
  • Other majors: The Core requirement may be fulfilled by any 3 or 4-unit mathematics course numbered 100 or above

Online Test Link

Contact Information

If you have questions about math placement, please email the Mathematics Department.

Before enrolling for the first time in one of the languages at USD, students must go through an evaluation of their current skills in the language they want to study. This is the case whether the course is to be taken at USD or elsewhere. Based on the results of this evaluation, the Department of Languages and Literatures will place the student in the course level most appropriate for his or her progress in the study of the language. Students will be able then to enroll in one of the class sections available for the course they have been placed into.

You can find more information about the Language Placement Exams on the Languages, Cultures and Literatures website.

Online Test Link

All language placement exams (except Arabic and Ancient Greek) are now available to take online. To take the placement exam in your language of choice, scroll to the bottom of the page, read the declaration, and select the language course link.

If you need to take an in-person exam, please contact the Director of Placement (Dr. Rubio-Fernaz:

Waiver Versus Exam

If you would like to take a language course as a beginner, you do not have to take the placement exam. Rather, you will enroll in a 101 class (ie ITAL 101). You'll need to complete a waiver to be able to enroll for any 101 course.

If you are familiar with a language and would like to be placed in a level appropriate to your skills and knowledge, please take the placement exam. Be honest and avoid using dictionaries or outside sources. You will want to be placed accurately! If you place in a higher level, you cannot take a lower level course than what you placed in, so it is imperative to take the test without any outside help. Just do your best based on what you already know or remember.

Competency Exams

If you believe that you can satisfy the language requirement outright, you have the option of taking a Competency Exam.

Contact Information

If you have any specific questions regarding the language placement process, please contact Dr. Rubio-Fernaz.

Complete Listing of Approved Exam Credits

  • If you have not sent your AP scores to USD, please send those results to the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. You can call the College Board at (609) 771-7300 and request they send your AP scores to USD Code 4849. If you have any further questions about AP credit, you can e-mail Undergraduate Admissions directly.
  • If you have sent your scores to USD already, and your schedule had not reflected the change, please email FirstReg.
  • If you have any questions regarding transfer credit and/or Community College credit, please email the Registrar.