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Mathematics Challenge Exam

The College of Undergraduate Studies uses ACCUPLACER multiple choice tests for its mathematics challenge exams. The ACCUPLACER test is an untimed exam, and calculators are not allowed to be used during this test. The average time required for a student to complete the ACCUPLACER test is 1–2 hours. However, students are not timed for this exam and, therefore, may take as long as necessary.

1. Discuss it with your academic advisor. An academic advisor will refer students, as appropriate, to Testing Services to enable them to complete the ACCUPLACER Math Challenge Exam.

2. Arrange your Math Challenge Exam by making an appointment with Testing Services in the Tutoring and Testing Center; call (954) 262-8374.

3. Students can take this exam only once, prior to the start of the first term at NSU.

4. Please be aware that if you attempt to make your appointment too late, you may be unable to secure an appointment in time to meet the deadline.

5. Students who wish to challenge their math placement, and are not local to the NSU Fort Lauderdale campus may call Testing Services who will work with the student to set up the details of taking the exam with a proctor in their area.

Test Content

Elementary Algebra

A total of 16 questions, divided into three types, are administered in this test.

The first type involves operations with integers and rational numbers, and includes computation with integers and negative rationals, the use of absolute values, and ordering. These questions test minimal skill levels.

A second type, which involves operations with algebraic expressions, tests minimal skill levels using evaluation of simple formulas and expressions, as well as adding and subtracting monomials and polynomials. At all skill levels, questions are provided involving multiplying and dividing monomials and polynomials, the evaluation of positive rational roots and exponents, simplifying algebraic fractions, and factoring.

The third type of questions involves the solution of equations, inequalities, and word problems. Few questions from this category are presented to the student unless he or she shows skills in this area. When a high degree of competence is indicated, questions from this category include solving linear equations and inequalities, factoring quadratic equations, and working solutions for verbal problems presented in an algebraic context, including geometric reasoning and graphing and translation of written phrases into algebraic expressions.

College-Level Mathematics

A total of 20 questions are administered. The test assesses proficiency in intermediate algebra through pre-calculus in order to enable institutions to place students into intermediate algebra, college algebra, pre-calculus, and introductory calculus courses.

Questions administered in the test represent six general categories:

•Algebraic Operations: includes simplifying rational algebraic expressions, factoring and expanding polynomials, and manipulating roots and exponents.

•Solutions of Equations and Inequalities: includes the solution of linear and quadratic equations and inequalities, systems of equations, and other algebraic equations.

•Coordinate Geometry: includes questions involving plane geometry, the coordinate plane, straight lines, conics, sets of points in the plane, and graphs of algebraic functions.

•Applications and other Algebra Topics: includes complex numbers, series and sequences, determinants, permutations and combinations, factorials, and word problems.

•Functions: includes questions involving polynomial, algebraic, exponential, and logarithmic functions.

•Trigonometry: includes trigonometric functions.

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