IUPUC also uses the Assessment and Learning in Knowledge Spaces (ALEKS) as a math placement tool.
This tool provides you and your academic advisor with information about your mathematical strengths and weaknesses. During your advising appointment, your advisor will use your ALEKS percentage score to help you register for the most appropriate math course(s) based on your skill level.
Preparing for ALEKS
You do not have to prepare before taking the ALEKS assessment, but you should take the test seriously as it will determine your placement in IUPUC math courses.
If the results of your initial assessment are not as strong as you would like, you can retake the ALEKS assessment four more times (for a total of FIVE assessments). You will also be given the opportunity to complete self-guided online ALEKS learning modules to strengthen your math skills. These learning modules must be completed before retaking ALEKS or before the start of the semester to brush up on specific topics on which you might need more practice.
Remember, the ALEKS assessment will not only help you place into your appropriate math course(s), but it will also help you be more likely to succeed in the course and make good grades.
Once you are registered, you will have up to six weeks to complete the assessment and related learning modules.
ALEKS consists of three parts:
- Initial assessment
- Review and instruction modules
- Four reassessments
Completing your Initial Assessment
- For ALEKS to be effective, you must do the exam on your own, without notes, books, or help from others.
- ALEKS is not a traditional exam; it is a tool to help you find the math course where you have the best chance for academic success based on your existing knowledge and skills.
- Rather than mulitple-choice questions, ALEKS participants complete a series of free-response questions.
- Before the initial assessment, ALEKS will provide you with a quick tutorial on how to use the system, including entering your answers, using the graphing tool, and using the calculator provided.
- There is no time limit for the initial assessment, but the average completion time is approximately 90 minutes.
When taking ALEKS:
- Plan ahead so that you have at least 90 minutes of uninterrupted time.
- Pencils and plenty of scratch paper will be provided.
- An online calculator will be provided. Do not use your own physical calculator when taking the ALEKS assessment.
- When finished, you will see a summary page of your assessment, including a pie chart with your results.
Learning Modules & Reassessments
After the initial assessment, use the online self-guided ALEKS learning modules to refresh your knowledge and practice specific skills unique to your results. Begin the learning modules immediately after the initial assessment. You have six weeks to utilize the learning modules and may complete up to four reassessments to improve your results.
ALEKS Math Placement Score
After your the initial assessment, you will see a detailed pie chart of your topic mastery called "MyPie." Choose "More Detailed Report" to see your percentage score.
- If you're satisfied with your placement: Meeting the cut-off score for your courses is a great starting point, but it does not guarantee your academic success. You are more likely to succeed if you are fully proficient in the skills corresponding to your "MyPie" wedges. Using the learning modules will make you more likely to succeed, saving you time, money, and ensuring long-term academic success.
- If you're not satisfied with your placement: Use the online learning modules to review the skills corresponding to your "MyPie" wedges. The modules are a great way to refresh and practice skills related to math topics you've previously studied but need to brush up on. If most of the topics seem like new material, however, register for the course you placed into to learn those topics in the classroom.