What is ALEKS?

ALEKS is a powerful artificial-intelligence based assessment tool that zeros in on the strengths and weaknesses of a student’s mathematical knowledge, reports its findings to the student, and then provides the student with a learning environment for improving this knowledge to an appropriate level for course placement.

The ALEKS Math Assessment ensures students’ readiness for mathematics courses at Western Oregon University. Since these courses are demanding, it is important for students to begin in the course most likely to lead to success. Students will not be permitted to take a course unless they have demonstrated readiness. After completing the initial assessment, students who wish to improve their skills may use the included learning modules.

Students may not take certain courses in mathematics without demonstrating readiness.

Who must take ALEKS?

All entering first-year students and all new transfer students are recommended to take the ALEKS assessment.

Check first which mathematics course(s) your major requires. If you major requires mathematics, the course(s) likely have a math or ALEKS placement level prerequisite.

If you are only required to take a General Education Foundations – Mathematics course that does not have a math or ALEKS placement level prerequisite, you are not required to take the ALKES assessment. However, we strongly recommend that you do so if there is any chance that you will change your major to a major that requires mathematics.

You DON’T need to take the ALEKS assessment if you:

Already have college math credit
If you have college mathematics credit with a grade of C- or higher (MTH 060, 070, 095, 111, 112, or 200-level), you do not need to take the ALEKS assessment. Do check with your academic advisor about math prerequisites.

Already have AP math credit
If you have AP mathematics credit, you do not need to take the ALEKS assessment.

If you are unsure about your college or AP credit, please see your academic advisor.

If you are a current WOU student and you have not yet taken a mathematics placement assessment, please ask the Mathematics Department if you need to take the ALEKS assessment before registering for a mathematics course.

When do students take ALEKS?

Students need to demonstrate readiness for their scheduled courses via ALEKS assessment prior to registering for a WOU mathematics course.

Students beginning classes Fall term may begin the assessment May 1.

It is highly recommended that first-year and transfer students take the ALEKS assessment prior to attending SOAR (or T-SOAR).

Students beginning classes in Winter, Spring and Summer terms may begin the assessment at different times, please contact the Mathematics Department for details.

Your score expires

Your score expires after one year, so you must take a mathematics course before that expiration date. This will help you satisfy the WOU policy that students must complete the mathematics portion of their graduation requirements by the end of the sophomore year (90 credits). See Take the Assessment.

How long will the assessment take?

The assessment will ask 30 questions. You should plan to complete the assessment in one 2 – 3 hour sitting. If you do not complete the assessment in one sitting, you will have 24 hours to complete it before the assessment is reset.


Mathematics Department

(503) 838-8465 | or e-mail: pricesl@wou.edu