Placement Exams

English Language Exam

When you arrive as a new Academic English (AE) student, you will take the English placement exam. This exam determines your level and the classes you will take in the AE program. It includes a computer-based test that measures grammar, listening, and reading proficiency; and a writing exam which shows writing, grammar and vocabulary skills. The placement exam is used to place you into the appropriate AE class levels, from Beginning through Advanced. You will receive your placement exam results before you register for classes.

Who must take the placement exam?

All new students at INTO CSU must take the placement exam before they can start taking English language classes.

What is the placement exam?

It is an English language test with two parts. Part one is a 30 minute writing test. Part two is a computer based test and checks your skills in English grammar, listening and reading.

Why must new students take this test?

Classes are divided into beginning, intermediate and advanced levels. You cannot register for your classes until you know the level you should take.

When must I take this test?

You must take the test during Orientation Week. Orientation Week is the week before classes begin at INTO CSU.

How will I know my score?

After you take the placement exam, you will meet with an advisor later in the same week. The advisor will discuss your level and your study plan with you.

Math Placement Exam (MPE)

All undergraduate Pathway students must take the Math Placement Exam (MPE) before they can register for classes. The results of the MPE determine both the level of math classes students will take, and how soon students can register for courses that have specific math requirements. Students should prepare by using the MPE review materials and then take the proctored MPE online one time before coming to CSU.

Click here for detailed instructions on taking the MPE online, which includes:

  • Getting your eID
  • Accessing the review materials
  • Testing your computer to make sure it works with the programs
  • Registering for a proctored exam
  • Taking the exam

After taking the MPE from home one time, send an e-mail to with your scores.

If you are not satisfied with your results, you will be allowed to take the MPE one more time during Orientation week.  To prepare for taking the MPE a second time at CSU, do the following:

  • Read the MEP Review Materials again before coming to CSU.
  • On campus, you will need to use a TI-83 or TI-84 graphing calculator while taking the MPE.
  • Arrive on time for Orientation week. We will arrange a time for all Pathway students to take the MPE on campus during Orientation week.
  • Get plenty of rest after you arrive in Fort Collins.

Chemistry Preparation

Certain Pathway program majors require that students take CHEM111 and CHEM112 during their second term (or at some point in their academic career).  These majors include:

  • Most Engineering majors (except Computer Engineering)
  • Many Science majors (such as Biology, Physics and Chemistry)

Starting in Fall 2016, the CSU Chemistry department is requiring that all students who want to take CHEM111 and CHEM112 must complete a chemistry preparation program during the semester before they take CHEM111 and CHEM112.

The chemistry preparation program is completed with the online Chem Prep module.  For more information, go to the Chem Prep website.

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