Placement Exams

Placement Exams

If you are a new first-year or transfer student with no college-level English or mathematics courses, you may need to take a placement exam prior to enrolling in your first English or mathematics course.

We describe these placement requirements in the following sections.

English Composition Placement


Eligible to Enroll in: Test/Component/Score
ENG 105 Completed PLACE/ENGL/60
ENG 205** ACENG/WRPLC/8
ACT/ENGL/30-36***
AP/ENGLN/4
AP/ENGLT/4
IB/ENGA/4
PLACE/ENGL/40-50
SATI/VERB/700-800***
ENG 105 ACENG/WRPLC/4-7
ACT/ENGL/17-29
IELTS/COMP/6-9
PIE/TOTAL/70-120
PLACE/ENGL/30
SATI/VERB/340-690
TOEFL/TOTCB/193-300
TOEFL/TOTIB/70-120
TOEFL/TOTPB/525-677
ENG 100
(Students at this placement level can only enroll in ENG 105 if they take ENG 100 in the same term.)
ACENG/READ/1-120
ACENG/SNTC/1-120
ACENG/WRPLC/1-3
ACT/ENGL/1-16
PLACE/ENGL/10
SATI/VERB/200-330

An English Advanced Placement Test score of:

  • 3: students take English 105
  • 4: students take English 205
  • 5: student has completed the Composition Requirement
  • If you score a 4 on both the English Language and Composition and the English Literature and Composition AP exams, you will need to take ENG 205 to fulfill the first-year writing requirement.
Transfer Students

Students who transfer to Northern Arizona University who have completed English 101 and 102, or their equivalent, have satisfied the composition requirement.

These courses must be listed as equivalent within the Arizona state system. If the courses are taken outside of Arizona, an English Composition Waiver Request is required.

Students who transfer to Northern Arizona University who have completed English 105 at Arizona State University will need to take English 205 at Northern Arizona University.

Northern Arizona University students who complete English 105 and then transfer to University of Arizona or Arizona State University will be required to take English 102 to complete the composition requirement.

Northern Arizona University students who complete 105 and 205 satisfy the requirements of University of Arizona and Arizona State University.

Waiving a course

If you have completed prior coursework in composition that is equivalent to English 105 at Northern Arizona University, you can choose to waive the required composition course.

Mathematics Placement—ALEKS and Other Routes

In order to enroll in any mathematics or statistics course at Northern Arizona University, you must have the appropriate mathematics placement.

You can establish your mathematics placement by:

  • Earning a "C" or better in an approved college or university mathematics or statistics transfer course, or
  • Scoring sufficiently on the College-Level Examination Program (CLEP), Advanced Placement (AP), or International Baccalaureate (IB) exam; or
  • Taking the NAU ALEKS Mathematics Placement Test.

For questions regarding transfer course equivalence, please contact your advisor.

The NAU ALEKS Mathematics Placement Test is designed to accurately measure students’ mathematics knowledge, and will indicate a specific mathematics placement for each student. It can place students into the following courses: MAT 100, 108, 114, 150, 119, 125, 131, 136, 226, or STA 270. Students whose score is not high enough for placement into their desired mathematics or statistics course are encouraged to study and review on their own, or with a tutor, or to use the ALEKS Learning Module before testing again.


To Take This COURSE: requires a grade of C or better in this PREREQUISITE* or requires one of these PLACEMENT TESTS/Components/Scores:
MAT 226 MAT 125 ALEKS/MATHC/65+
PLACE/MATH/70
ALEKS/MATHA/65+***
MAT 136 MAT 125 ALEKS/MATHC/65+
PLACE/MATH/70
ALEKS/MATHA/65+***
MAT 131 MAT 108, MAT 110**, or MAT 119 ALEKS/MATHC/60+
PLACE/MATH/65
ALEKS/MATHA/60+***
MAT 125 MAT 108 or MAT 110** ALEKS/MATHC/50+
PLACE/MATH/55
ALEKS/MATHA/50+***
MAT 119 MAT 114 ALEKS/MATHC/50+
PLACE/MATH/55
ALEKS/MATHA/50+***
STA 270 MAT 108, MAT 114
or
MAT 100 with passing score on Mathematics Advancement Exam
or
MAT 102X**
ALEKS/MATHC/40+
MATHADVEXAM/ADVT/2
PLACE/MATH/46
ALEKS/MATHA/40+***
MAT 150 MAT 100 with passing score on Mathematics Advancement Exam
or
MAT 102X**
ALEKS/MATHC/30+
MATHADVEXAM/ADVT/2
PLACE/MATH/43
ALEKS/MATHA/30+***
MAT 114 MAT 100 with passing score on Mathematics Advancement Exam
or
MAT 102X**
ALEKS/MATHC/30+
MATHADVEXAM/ADVT/2
PLACE/MATH/43
ALEKS/MATHA/30+***
MAT 108 MAT 100 with passing score on Mathematics Advancement Exam
or
MAT 102X**
ALEKS/MATHC/30+
MATHADVEXAM/ADVT/2
PLACE/MATH/43
ALEKS/MATHA/30+***
MAT 100 'Placement Score Only
or
MAT 101X**
ALEKS/MATHC/1-29
PLACE/MATH/30 or lower
ALEKS/MATHA/1-29***
ALEKS/MATHB/1-100***

*or equivalent transfer or test (AP, CLEP, IB) credit

**MAT 101X Beginning Algebra, MAT 102X Intermediate Algebra, and MAT 110 College Algebra are no longer offered at NAU. They are included here to assist students who may have taken these courses at NAU before they were were expired or who have transferred equivalent coursework to NAU.

***The ALEKS/MATHA and ALEKS/MATHB tests are no longer offered but scores from these tests taken before Spring 2012 may still be used for placement.

Departmental Placement

When you begin your undergraduate work, your college or department may also require that you take a placement or proficiency exam covering introductory or basic areas in its academic discipline to determine the course level at which you will be permitted to enroll. No credit is awarded for your performance on these placement exams.

Your college or department decides how to determine placement levels for its courses. Its exams may include:

  • nationally normed standardized exams, such as ACT or SAT,
  • exams designed and graded by the individual college or department,
  • prior course work, or
  • combinations of these three.

You may be charged a nominal fee to cover the cost of producing the placement exam.

In some departments, you may be permitted to use supplemental exams to challenge the placement level initially assigned to you. There is a charge for such challenges. (See Challenge and Supplemental Exams).