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Overcoming The Math Placement Test

The Dreaded Math Placement Test.

"Sometimes, there is an underlying lesson in what you may perceive to be a failure." -Jordan

Nobody really emphasizes how important this test is or how it can have such an impact on your overall degree matriculation. Jordan took her placement test while serving as a teaching assistant and Amaya from her bed. Neither of them would have foreseen the results. They each placed into Math 141- College Algebra and Applications. At the time, they didn’t realize the affects the test had on their progression as science majors. After speaking with their peers, they soon realized its effects. This placement score ultimately led them to starting their science courses a semester behind since these courses required Pre-Calculus as a co-requisite.

In the beginning, they found it challenging to explain to their peers why they weren’t taking General Chemistry or Biology. Although the placement score was not indicative of their knowledge, they felt embarrassed. Though it was an emotional roller coaster in the beginning, this obstacle led to an underlying advantage. Amaya and Jordan both believe their placement gave them a stronger math and science foundation while also allowing them to get acclimated to college overall.

Coming into college Amaya and Jordan did not know each other, but they grew close through a common obstacle. Looking back, they realized this moment helped them grow in more ways than one. Since then, Amaya and Jordan and successfully matriculated through Calculus II. The pre-med journey is a constant comparison battle. Take pride in your uniqueness and don’t be afraid to be different.

A Piece of Advice

Take advantage of opportunities to place out of general classes such as math or foreign language.

Though we missed out on this opportunity, we hope sharing our challenges can encourage others to do their best when taking placement tests. We also encourage reviewing necessary material before hand. Even if you don’t place where you believe you belong, it’s not the end of the world.

-Amaya and Jordan


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