Fill out the
WOU Math Prerequisite and Placement Guide to see if you need to take the Math Placement Test
Photo ID required, please bring photo ID when you come for your test
Who has to take the WOU Mathematics Placement Test?
The Mathematics Department at WOU uses SAT/ACTMath scores to make an initial placement recommendation for new students. If you wish to enter a mathematics course at a higher level than your SAT/ACT score indicates you must take the math placement Test.
You may not need a placement test if you have completed a college level mathematics course at some other college or university, or received AP calculus or AP statistics credit.
Note: some students with particular course prerequisites may also have to take the mathematics placement test. For example, Math 105 is not the prerequisite for Math 111, 211, 251, etc. See the FAQ page for more information.
Students in the following majors take the mathematics placement test during SOAR, during New Student Week or at the beginning of their first term at WOU. Students in these majors will be better served by WOU if they start their mathematics course sequences at the beginning of their first year at WOU.
Major List: Biology, Chemistry, PreMedicine, Mathematics, Elementary Education (PreK  Middle Authorization), Secondary Education, Mathematics
What should you expect when you take the WOU Mathematics Placement Test?
 The WOU Mathematics Department uses COMPASS®, which is a computerized, multiple choice test.
 There is an online nongraphing calculator for your use.
 You may use the provided calculator (or your own nongraphing calculator) and pencil and paper during the test, but no other materials.
 The test has questions of increasing difficulty, in approximately the topic order listed below. You will not be asked questions about every topic in the lists; problems are randomly selected and the difficulty of the problems increases as you answer the problems correctly.
What topics are covered on the WOU Mathematics Placement Test?
Numerical skills/ PreAlgebra 
 Basic operations with integers
 Basic operations with fractions
 Basic operations with decimals
 Percentages
 Absolute value of numbers
 Means, medians, modes

 Multiples and factors of integers
 Exponents, square roots, scientific notation
 Conversions between fractions and decimals
 Order concepts (greater than, less than)
 Counting problems and basic probability
 Ratios and proportions

Algebra 
Elementary Algebra 
Intermediate Algebra 
 Substituting values into algebraic equations
 Setting up equations
 Basic operations with polynomials
 Factoring of polynomials
 Formula manipulation
 Basic operations with linear equations
 Exponents and radicals
 Basic operations with linear inequalities

 Rational expressions
 Exponents and radicals
 Systems of linear equations, 2 variables
 Quadratic formula
 Absolute value equations
 Absolute value inequalities

Coordinate Geometry 

 Linear equations in two variables
 Distance and midpoint formula in the plane
 Graphing circles, parabolas, etc.
 Graphing parallel and perpendicular lines
 Graphing rational functions
 Graphing systems of equations


College Algebra 
 Functions
 Exponents
 Complex Numbers
 Factorials
 Roots of polynomials
 Matrices (basic operations, equations and determinants)
 Systems of linear equations in three or more variables
 Logic and proof techniques
 Arithmetic and geometric sequences and series

Geometry 
 Triangles (area, perimeter, Pythagorean Theorem)
 Circles (area, perimeter, arcs, etc.)
 Rectangles (area, perimeter, etc.)
 Composite shapes
 Angles (supplementary, complimentary, adjacent, vertical)

Trigonometry 
 Trigonometric functions and identities
 Right angle trigonometry
 Trigonometric equations and inequalities

Primary Study Resources
 The COMPASS Web Site provides some sample questions. The solutions to the sample questions are listed at the end of the sample questions. Please note, this is just a short list of sample questions to help familiarize students with the type of questions on the test. Most students find that more indepth study is required to place into the appropriate course.
 Placement Test Preparation Problems for the COMPASS Placement Test (.pdf format)
 Math Center Free Drop In Tutoring: Take a textbook or the practice problems to the free Math Center Free Drop In Mathematics Tutoring, Hamersly Library 228. Their schedule is posted at wou.edu/mathcenter
Book Study Resources
 WOU Checkout Resources: The State Adopted text book collection, Hamersly Library, second floor, has a variety of high school mathematics textbooks that you may check out for self study.
 Quick Guides: Schaum's Outline of Elementary Algebra by B. R. Rich and Schaum's Outline of Intermediate Algebra by Ray Steege, Kerry Bailey are both available at the WOU bookstore
 SelfPaced Text Introductory Algebra: A JustInTime Approach by Alice M. Kaseberg This text, used at several local community colleges, is available in paperback or hardcover.
 SelfPaced Text Intermediate Algebra:: A JustInTime Approach by Alice M. Kaseberg This text, used at several local community colleges, is available in paperback or hardcover.
 Any standard Introductory Algebra or Intermediate Algebra text will also suffice for a study guide.
Web Resources
Scheduling a time to take the WOU Mathematics Placement Test
Students attending SOAR and/or New Student Week will be given the opportunity to take the Mathematics Placement Test. No additional sign up or appointment is necessary for these students prior to arriving at SOAR or at New Student Week.
Students who wish to take the Mathematics Placement Test during the regular academic year must contact the mathematics office specialist: Sharon Price, to schedule an appointment.
Students may take the Mathematics Placement Test twice without charge.
Contact:
Sharon Price
Math & Nursing Building 116
5038388465
prisesl@wou.edu