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Texas A&M University
Mathematics

Information about the Math Placement Exams (MPE) for the College Station campus.

Introduction

At Texas A&M University some transfer, and all incoming freshmen students are required to take a Math Placement Exam (MPE). The Math Placement Exam is a 90-minute exam used to assess students' math skills. This is an important tool to help advisors determine which mathematics course students should take. Because of the large number of introductory mathematics courses at Texas A&M, there are two placement exams. The MPE each student takes is dependent upon his or her major and the MPE system is configured so most students are automatically directed to the appropriate MPE. Students are not permitted to use calculators or other aids on the exam.

Requirements for Freshman Students

All incoming freshmen are required to complete the MPE. The location and rules for when and where students take the MPE depends upon the college/department in which they are admitted. Students should read the description of the two groups outlined below and follow the instructions for the group that fits them best.
  • Group 1:
    • Students accepted to the College of Engineering and the College of Science (with the exception of students from the Department of Biology) take the MPE on Day 2 of their NSC. These students may take two practice exams prior to their NSC and are encouraged to do so. The scores earned on the practice exams will not be used for math course placement purposes. More information on practice exams can be found below.
    • Students in Group 1 will have one opportunity to re-take the proctored MPE. There are two different opportunities from which students can choose: (1) Take one online-proctored MPE after successful completion of the Personalized Precalculus Program (ppp.tamu.edu), or (2) take a proctored MPE during Howdy Week on August 20 or August 22. Students may choose only one of the two options; they cannot retake online and during Howdy Week. The higher of the two MPE scores will be used for placement purposes.
  • Group 2:
    • Students from the Department of Biology and all other majors NOT in the College of Engineering or Science should take the MPE online at least 24 hours before to attending their NSC. These students may take 2 practice exams prior to their NSC and are encouraged to do so. The scores earned on the practice exams will not be used for math course placement purposes. More information on practice exams can be found below. To take the MPE, log into howdy.tamu.edu, go to the Applicant tab and follow the instructions for the Math Placement Exam.
    • Students in this group can take the MPE a total of three times but there is a two-week waiting period between attempts. We recommend students take the MPE well in advance of their NSC in the event they want to retake the exam, they will have time to do so.

To access the MPE score, go to the My Profile link then navigate to the Prior Education and Testing section. Click on Test Scores to view the MPE score.

Requirements for Transfer Students

Transfer students do not have to take the MPE unless they are planning to take MATH 151, 171, 147, or 142 at Texas A&M. For students who plan to take MATH 151, 171, or 147, a prerequisite restriction will prevent you from enrolling in these courses unless you have credit for MATH 150 at Texas A&M University or an appropriate score on the MPE. For students who plan to take MATH 142, you must have credit for MATH 140 or an appropriate score on the MPE to register for the course. Please check with your Texas A&M advisor to determine if you must take the MPE before enrolling.

Guidelines and Items Allowed

  1. Do not use Internet Explorer when accessing the MPE.
  2. Calculators (of any type) are not allowed while taking the MPE.
  3. No additional resources (e.g., textbooks, cheat sheets, formula charts, web searches, etc.) of any type are allowed on MPE.
  4. Students have a total of 90 minutes to take the exam.
  5. It may take 24 hours for scores to appear in Howdy.
  6. Students are expected to take the exam on their own without the help of others.
  7. Students must abide by the Aggie Code of Honor.

Testing Accommodations for Students with Disabilities

Reasonable testing accommodations are provided to allow students with documented disabilities an opportunity to demonstrate their skills and knowledge.  In order to receive accommodations for the MPE, the student must submit disability documentation and their specific accommodation requests at least two weeks prior to the preferred testing date. Please contact Disability Services at (979)-845-1637 or visit http://disability.tamu.edu


Placement Practice Tests

There are two ways students can practice for the MPE: (1) An electronic version with a similar interface to the actual MPE, and (2) Practice problems on paper.


FAQs for MPE

Q: I took dual credit courses in high school. Do I still need to take the MPE?
A: All incoming freshmen, regardless of high school coursework, are required to take the MPE.

Q: I took AP Calculus in high school. Do I still need to take the MPE?
A: All incoming freshmen, regardless of high school coursework, are required to take the MPE.

Q: I am an incoming freshman, where do I go to take the MPE?
A: Students enrolling in the College of Engineering and the College of Science) will take the MPE on Day 2 of their NSC. But they can take practice exams as described in the section above on Placement Practice Tests.

Students not in the College of Engineering or College of Science (Except for students in majors in Department of Biology) take the MPE online at any location that has an internet connection at least 24 hours prior to their NSC. These students will access the MPE by logging into howdy.tamu.edu and clicking on the Math Placement Exams link on the Applicant tab.

Q: Where can I find my MPE score?
A: It will take 24 hours for your score to appear in Howdy. To access your score, go to the My Profile link then navigate to the Prior Education and Testing section. Click on Test Scores to view your MPE score.

Q: What is MPE1 and MPE2?
A: MPE1 is the math placement exam for students who need to take Math 151, Math 171, or Math 147. MPE2 is the math placement exam for students who need to take Math 140, 141, Math 131, Math 166, or Math 142.

Q: I lost Internet access in the middle of my exam. How can I finish the exam?
A: Email your fullname, UIN and type of MPE (MPE1, MPE2 or MPE4) to mathassessment@math.tamu.edu and someone will help you within 1 working day.

Q: I need to take the MPE but I don't have the applicant tab in Howdy. What do I need to do?
A: If you just accepted your application to TAMU you should wait 24 hours for the system to update. The applicant tab will show up once your acceptance has been fully processed.

Q: I am a transfer student who has already completed my math requirements. Do I still have to take the MPE?
A: If you still have Math 142, 151, 147, or 171 to take at TAMU, then you do have to take the MPE. If your math requirements are already fulfilled at the time of transfer, then you do not need to take the MPE.

Q: Can I retake the MPE?
A: For students not taking a proctored MPE on the second day of their NSC, the MPE can be taken a total of 3 times, but there is a two-week waiting period (14 days) between attempts. For students required to take the proctored MPE on the second day of their NSC, they can retake the MPE one time by either (1) enrolling in the Personalized Precalculus Program (ppp.tamu.edu), successfully completing the program, and then take an online-proctored MPE, or (2) retake the MPE on the TAMU campus during Howdy Week.

Q: I have accepted my admission and I went online to take my MPE and it says I am not eligible at this time. I have already signed up for my NSC at this time. What do I need to do to be able to take the MPE?
A: The systems loads all data and creates the appropriate permissions to take the MPE overnight. So, try taking the MPE the day after you sign up for the NSC and you will likely be able to take the exam.

Q: I am a student in the Department of Biology, when do I take my MPE?
A: You need to take the MPE at least 24 hours (preferably even sooner) before attending your NSC. To take the MPE, log into howdy.tamu.edu, click on the Applicant tab, and follow instructions for the Math Placement Exam.