The online Assessment and LEarning in Knowledge Spaces (ALEKS) Placement Assessment covers material from basic math through precalculus. While this exam is not required for many students, you must take ALEKS if:
- You are an incoming first-year or transfer student and do not have college transfer credits AND you did not take the ACT, SAT, AP Calculus, IB Higher Level Mathematics, or the CLEP Precalculus exams
- You wish to challenge the initial math placement you received through the University, and understand a lower ALEKS score will result in lower math course placement
Preparing for the Assessment
The ALEKS assessment is open from May 1 to the first Friday of classes. If you choose to challenge your initial math placement, or you don’t have ACT, SAT, AP, IB, or CLEP scores, you should take the assessment as soon as possible.
Since students can take the math placement five (5) times, they can consider every assessment practice for the next assessment. After the initial assessment, Prep and Learning Modules are generated unique to each student, based on the student's correct and incorrect answers. These modules are designed to focus the student's attention on what they are ready to learn and skip what the student already knows.
Paying for ALEKS
In order to take the ALEKS assessment, you will be charged a total of $25. This includes $5 for Respondus Monitor and a $20 assessment package. The assessment package includes: one (1) initial assessment, unlimited use of the Prep and Learning Module, and up to four (4) additional assessments.
The fee to use Respondus Monitor, and the cost of the assessment package will be billed separately.
You must access the online assessment through your MyMichiganTech account using the link in your Checklist on the Prospective Student tab.
Your MyMichiganTech username and password were provided with your acceptance materials. If you’ve misplaced your login information, contact the Admissions staff at 888-688-1885 weekdays between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. (ET). Or fill out this short form and we will connect with you.
Use the login information provided at time of application. For assistance, email the International Programs and Services office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Taking the Assessment
Set aside roughly 90 minutes of dedicated time for your first assessment. All students get three (3) hours to complete the initial assessment and any additional assessments you may need to take.
The ALEKS placement requires the use of LockDown Browser and a webcam for Respondus Monitor. The LockDown Browser will prevent you from accessing other websites or other applications. You will be unable to exit the test until all questions are completed and submitted. The webcam ensures that you take the exam without assistance of any kind except a pencil/pen and blank paper. Watch this short video to get a basic understanding of LockDown Browser and the webcam feature/Respondus Monitor. You should also make sure you have access to a device that meets these minimum requirements prior to taking the assessment.
Software will be used to record you taking each assessment. These recordings will be made available only to the Math Placement Coordinator and any group set up to review an appeal of academic misconduct.
You may only use pencil/pen, blank paper, and the resources provided by ALEKS. ALEKS will provide an on-screen calculator if you need one to complete a particular problem. Otherwise, you may not use a calculator. You may not receive assistance from friends, family, other websites, textbooks, or any other resource not provided by ALEKS.
At the beginning of the assessment, you will go through a brief tutorial that will introduce you to the ALEKS system and interface. You will be shown how to enter different types of answers, how to use the ALEKS calculator, and how to graph something by hand.
Do your best to answer each question correctly, this is an adaptive assessment. The correctness of each question determines the difficulty of the next question.
If your computer locks up or freezes during the middle of an assessment, try refreshing the page on your browser. If that does not work, close your browser and log back in. The work you have already submitted is saved, and the assessment will pick up where you left off.
If you need to improve your score to be registered for your recommended first math course, you should use the Prep and Learning Modules that were generated by your initial assessment. The more diligently you use them, the more your mathematical knowledge will increase and the higher score your next assessment should be. A minimum of three (3) hours in the Prep and Learning Modules is required between assessment attempts.
If you need any technical assistance with the ALEKS Math Placement, please contact ALEKS Support.
If you have additional questions not related to technical support for ALEKS, please contact Ann Humes.
After the Assessment
The highest placement score you’ve earned will determine your math placement. Your ALEKS score is only valid as a prerequisite for your first math course at Michigan Tech.
You’re done! Your ALEKS score will be submitted to Admissions, and we will add you to the applicable initial math course based on your ALEKS score.
Prep and Learning Modules are targeted training sessions that allow you to improve your skills in areas you did not perform as well in during the previous assessment(s). You must work in a Prep and Learning Module for a minimum of three (3) hours before taking your next assessment. You may start and stop working within Prep and Learning as often as you like, but will not be able to take your next assessment until you have logged three (3) hours in the system.
If you place in your recommended first math course after your initial assessment, you may use a Prep and Learning Module to help you prepare for your first math course at Michigan Tech.
While working in a Prep and Learning Module, you will periodically complete progress assessments to solidify your gains in knowledge. Progress assessments do not count towards placement or change your placement result. You must retake the ALEKS Assessment to receive a new score; otherwise, we will use your most recent ALEKS score for your initial math placement.