CWRU | First Year

Math diagnostic test due June 23. Required for all students

All incoming students are required to complete the Math Diagnostic exam on the New Student Checklist, regardless of intended major or expected calculus credit.

The exam is now available via the New Student Checklist and should be completed no later than Friday, June 23rd.

The math diagnostic is a helpful tool to determine students’ readiness for calculus coursework at CWRU. The academic success of each student depends on beginning the study of mathematics at the level most appropriate for them in relation to the CWRU curriculum. Regardless of where you begin your study of mathematics in the fall, it is our goal to facilitate the development of the skills conducive to your long-term success in your chosen course of study.

ScantronThe results of the math diagnostic will inform you of the appropriate level of calculus in which you may enroll at CWRU this fall. Students who intend to pursue a major that does not require calculus do not (and often should not) take a calculus course in the fall. More information about course recommendations and curricula for the various majors is contained in the First-Year Registration Guide, which will be made available on the New Student Checklist in early June. For now, students should understand the following related to the math diagnostic:

Purpose of the exam
The diagnostic exam is designed to test for calculus readiness at CWRU, and thus is independent of any standardized testing or calculus coursework in which the student may have engaged. The recommendation for math placement is based solely on the results of the diagnostic.

Results of the diagnostic
The diagnostic will recommend that a student begin his or her study of calculus in pre-calculus (MATH 120) or calculus I (MATH 121 or MATH 125). Specific calculus course recommendations will be made in the First-Year Registration Guide.

The role of AP/IB/college credit
If applicable, credit earned through AP or IB exams, or college-level coursework, will be used to place a student in a calculus course beyond Calculus I (if applicable). This also applies to students whose diagnostic score places them in pre-calculus. In this instance, students should carefully consider their calculus readiness before choosing to take an advanced-level course.

Opportunities to retake the diagnostic
Students whose score on the math diagnostic places them into pre-calculus will have the opportunity to take the diagnostic again during New Student Orientation. Students who believe they would benefit from self-study* or completion of a college-level pre-calculus course over the summer** are encouraged to do so, but this is not required or expected. Students should feel comfortable beginning their study of mathematics at CWRU in MATH 120.

*For students who wish to work independently over the summer, the CWRU Department of Mathematics, Applied Mathematics, and Statistics recommends ALEKS generates a study plan based on an individual assessment. Students move through the program by demonstrating mastery of each topic. Depending on the student, some may need to start in an algebra course with the hopes of being better prepared for MATH 120 in the fall, while others might feel comfortable reviewing the topics in an ALEKS pre-calculus course with hopes of placing into calculus. This is a fee-based service.

**Students who wish to verify whether or not a course to be taken at another college or university is equivalent to MATH 120 at CWRU should be in touch with the Office of Undergraduate Studies ( or 216-368-2928).