The University of San Francisco: Next Steps
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Placement Tests

Many placement tests can be taken online prior to coming to campus. Please take them before attending Orientation, as it will assist you in the advising and registration process.

Please read the following carefully to determine which exams you need to take.

Note: If you are a student with a disability who will need accommodations for the placement tests, please contact Student Disability Services at (415) 422-2613 one week before the scheduled test date.

More Questions? For foreign language placement test questions, please call Modern & Classical Languages at 415-422-2802. For Math placement test questions, call 415-422-2518 or email kcharris@usfca.edu.

Test Description

Math

This test is used to place you into the appropriate math course at USF. Previous college-level coursework will also be used when determining the appropriate course. This is a 40-minute algebra and trigonometry test, with 32 multiple-choice questions. No calculators are permitted.

Required of the following majors: Architecture and Community Design, Biology, Business (all majors), Chemistry, Computer Science, Environmental Science, Exercise and Sport Science (B.S. only), Economics, Math, Physics. All other majors do not need to take the Math Placement Test.

You do not have to take this test if you have submitted a SAT or ACT score to USF, or if you already took this test from home (link to test sent via email).

Undeclared students: If there is even a remote chance that you may choose a Math, Science, Business, Exercise and Sport Science, Architecture and Community Design, or Economics major, and you have not taken the SAT or ACT, then you should take the math test.

Take the online Math Placement Test »

Calculus Readiness Test

This test is used to place you into the appropriate calculus course at USF. This is a 30-minute test, with 25 multiple-choice questions. No calculators are permitted.

Required of the following majors: Architecture and Community Design, Chemistry, Computer Science, Economics, Math, Physics.

You do not have to take this test if you have completed and passed Calculus I at another college, or if you have submitted an AP Calculus score of 4 or 5.

Note: If you are interested in going to medical, dental, pharmacy or veterinary school after attending USF, one semester of Calculus is strongly recommended by many schools.

Take the online Calculus Readiness Test »

Foreign Language Placement Test

Foreign Language Test scores are used to place you into USF language courses. You only need to take this test if you plan on studying a foreign language at USF that you have previously studied.

French, Chinese, German, Filipino, Japanese and Spanish tests are available online. Please take these tests prior to Webtrack. Latin, Italian and Russian must be taken on-campus. Call the Foreign Language department at (415) 422-2802 to make arrangements. The format of these tests vary.

You do not have to take this test if you are beginning a new foreign language.

A foreign language is required of all Arts & Science as well as International Business majors.

Take the online Foreign Language Placement Test »

Chemistry Diagnostic Test

Starting in Summer 2014, all incoming students who need a chemistry class should review our web based tutorial site, then take our on-line diagnostic test (including transfers). The diagnostic test results will appear along with advice on how to prepare best for General Chemistry I (Chem 111/112L) or advice to take Foundations of Chemistry (Chem 001). Normally, Chem 001 is the course to take if you did not take High School Chemistry. The goal is to place you into a course where you will have success. 

Step 1: We have obtained permission for you to use the Washington University Chemistry Tutorials Website. Review topics, complete practice problems and quizzes (you cannot take their Diagnostic Exam!). This may take you several hours or longer in order to help you to prepare for college chemistry.

Step 2: Take the USF Chemistry Diagnostic Test, a 45 minute test with 42 multiple-choice questions on material from a typical year long high school chemistry course. You will need a pencil, scratch paper, calculator and periodic table. Relevant equations are provided. We suggest you print out a periodic table. You may not use a chemistry textbook or online sources of help (you will run out of time). 

Notes: A score of 4 or 5 on the AP Chemistry exam normally gives you credit for Chem 111 and possibly Chem 113 (you may want to take the test anyway to see were you stand. Please speak with a chemistry advisor). Even if you completed a college pre-general chemistry course at USF or another institution you must take the diagnostic test to gauge your readiness.

Take the Chemistry Diagnostic Test »