Welcome New Students


The math placement test is NOT required for all first-year students. However, any student who is planning to take an introductory mathematics course offered by the Mathematics department must pass the placement test at an appropriate level before enrolling in the course.

If you plan to take a mathematics course this fall you must take the math placement test before Monday, January 6, 2014.

For example if you are considering a major in …

  • mathematics
  • computer science
  • the natural sciences (e.g. chemistry, biology, physics, engineering, environment and conservation biology)

you will be required to take a mathematics course through the calculus level and need to be placed in the calculus sequence.

For all students, regardless of major, a Formal Analysis course that focuses on logical and algebraic thinking is a requirement of the Program of Liberal Studies. Not all Formal Analysis courses are in mathematics (they may be in philosophy, economics, psychology or other social sciences), but we do believe that the ability to reason algebraically is essential to be fully educated.

College-level mathematics courses tend to be more theoretical, less applied and more advanced than comparably labeled courses in high school. Because success with high school mathematics is no guarantee that you can plan to begin mathematics study at the calculus level in college, the placement test will help you determine your appropriate starting level for college-level mathematics.

Remember, success with a lower-level college mathematics course will better prepare you to take more advanced classes at Clark and help you avoid unsuccessful struggles with an upper-level mathematics class.

Placement Levels

Mathematics placement falls into the following levels:

  1. Any non-math Formal Analysis(FA) course.
  2. MATH 113 or MATH 119: You must pass the first part of the Mathematics Placement Test to enroll in these courses. MATH 113 - Mathematical Problem Solving is designed for prospective management and social science majors, while MATH 119 - Pre-calculus is designed for those going on to Calculus. It is possible to take both 113 and 119.
  3. MATH 120 or MATH 124: You must pass the second part of the Mathematics Placement Test to enroll in these courses. Both MATH 120 - Calculus I and MATH 124 - Honors Calculus I, the highest level of math placement, carry the Formal Analysis designation.

Course descriptions can be found in the Academic Catalog.

Sample Mathematics Questions

Below, find two links to sets of math placement sample problems. We encourage you to try these problems to give you some indication of how you might do on the placement test. If you plan to take the math placement test, please check off the appropriate box on the Placement Test Response Form. If you have questions about math placement, please contact the mathematics department at (508) 793-7343.

  • If you believe that you are ready for the PRE-CALCULUS LEVEL of courses at Clark, try this set of questions. The questions are similar to those that will be asked on the pre-calculus placement examination.
  • If you believe that you are ready to be placed into the CALCULUS LEVEL of classes at Clark, try this set of questions. They reflect the level of the material covered in that placement test.

How to take the math placement test

You must take the Mathematics Placement Test online before January 7, 2012. It is made available on Moodle, Clark's course management system. You will be prompted to log in.