Tips for completing your UIC placement tests

UIC Global tutors explain tips for completing placement tests

As an incoming UIC student, you are required to complete placement tests before class registration. In order to help you prepare for the placement tests, UIC Global tutors have outlined the top tricks and tips for each exam.

Introduction to Placement Tests:

You may be required to take multiple placement tests depending on your major and program. All required tests are listed in your UIC Student Portal.

Review the videos below for tips on completing each different placement test.

Math Placement Test:

All UIC students need to take the Math Placement Exam. Here are five tips to help you be successful.

  1. Be prepared for the exam and take it seriously – the outcome of the placement test will determine your math level for course registration.
  2. There are 25-30 questions with a time limit of two hours. Remember to pace yourself accordingly!
  3. The topics on the placement test include trigonometry, geometry, algebra, pre-calculus and calculus.
  4. There is a five-hour learning module linked to your exam, so you can review the math topics prior to taking the exam.
  5. You are allowed to have paper and a pencil. You will also be given a calculator.

Learn more about these tips and tricks by viewing this video:


Academic Writing Placement Exam:

Depending on your program, you may be required to complete the Academic Writing Placement Exam. Prepare for the exam by following these six tips from our UIC Global tutors.

  1. Read the directions very carefully and make sure to choose only one prompt.
  2. After studying the prompt, spend five to ten minutes creating an outline. The outline will help you stay organized and focused.
  3. Write a strong thesis statement. A thesis is the topic of your essay and your claim about that topic. Your thesis statement should be located at the end of the introduction paragraph.
  4. Organize your essay. The structure should first include an introduction paragraph, then several body paragraphs and finally a conclusion paragraph. Remember to follow your outline!
  5. After you are finished writing, remember to edit your essay. Check your thesis statement, add support to body paragraphs and eliminate spelling or grammatical errors.
  6. Don’t forget to watch your time! You only have about 90 minutes to complete the placement test.

Explore more about these tips by viewing the video below:


Chemistry Placement Exam:

Depending on your major and program, you may be required to take the Chemistry Placement Exam. Follow these five tips to help you prepare for the test.

  1. The exam is used to place students into the correct chemistry level. Only take this exam if it is in your UIC Student Portal.
  2. Review basic mathematical formulas, including units and measurements, atomic structures and acids and bases.
  3. Topics to review include nomenclature, stoichiometry, determination of limiting reactant, determination of empirical formula and use of the Periodic Table.
  4. You will be given 60 minutes for 60 multiple choice questions, so try to average spending one minute per question.
  5. You are allowed to bring paper and a pencil. You are also given a Periodic Table and a calculator.

Dive deeper by viewing the video below:


For any further questions or concerns about any of the placement exams, please reach out to

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