Preparation for ALEKS

Why must I take the ALEKS PPL Assessment?

The Placement Assessment is used to determine the mathematics course in which you will have the greatest success. Upon completion of the Placement Assessments, your scores are sent to your academic advisor. Your advisor will review your scores and help make appropriate recommendations for course registration.

Who has to take the ALEKS PPL Assessment?

  1. Students who have an ACT Math Score of 22 or Higher or an SAT Math Score of 500 or higher within the last two years can use those scores in lieu of taking ALEKS.
  2. Students that do not have recent ACT or SAT scores will need to take ALEKS along with an appropriate reading and writing assessment, as part of the admissions requirements.
  3. Students who have not already taken ALEKS and wish to enroll in a mathematics course at EICC for the first time will be required to take the ALEKS mathematics placement assessment.
  4. New students that have already completed a college level Math Course are not required to take ALEKS.

When do I take the ALEKS PPL Assessment?

New Students are required to complete ALEKS prior to attending Orientation and meeting with their advisor. 

Are ALEKS PPL Assessments proctored? Or Where can I take my Placement Assessment?

The college requires students to complete a proctored assessment.  Please contact the college to schedule an appointment to complete your proctored ALEKS assessment.  Students are encouraged to familiarize themselves with ALEKS by logging in and taking the practice test or utilizing the prep and learning modules. 

Proctored Assessments are available at:

  • Clinton Community College, 563-244-7001
  • Clinton Community College- Maquoketa Center, 563-652-5000
  • Muscatine Community College,  563-288-6056 or 563-288-6001
  • Scott Community College – Belmont Road, 563-441-4088
  • Scott Community College – Urban Campus, 563-336-5200


Is there a fee for using ALEKS PPL?

There is no charge for ALEKS if you intend to enroll at Eastern Iowa Community Colleges for up to 3 assessments.  If a student wishes to take the placement for enrollment at another college or university, there is a $25 charge. 


Do I need to install any software or plug-ins prior to taking the ALEKS Placement Assessment?

No. There are no required plug-ins or applets required with your use of ALEKS PPL. As long as you have access to the internet and are using an updated browser, you should not experience difficulties in taking your Placement Assessment.  For a list of preferred browsers, please review the ALEKS system requirements on their support site new window


What topics are covered during the ALEKS PPL Assessment?

ALEKS PPL is an online, adaptive system that covers a broad spectrum of mathematics topics. The length of the Placement Assessment will vary, but can be up to 30 questions. You will see some, but not all, of the math you have learned in high school. It is a Placement Assessment, not a preview of math courses at Eastern Iowa Community Colleges.  It is designed to identify if you are prepared for a particular course. After you take your first Placement Assessment, you will have the opportunity to review and master additional topics to reassess and improve your placement.

Topics covered:

  • Real numbers (including fractions, integers, and percentages)
  • Equations and inequalities (including linear equations, linear inequalities, systems of linear equations, and quadratic equations),
  • Linear and quadratic functions (including graphs and functions, linear functions, and parabolas), exponents and polynomials (including integer exponents, polynomial arithmetic, factoring, and polynomial equations), rational expressions (including rational equations and rational functions
  • Radical expressions (including higher roots and rational exponents)
  • Exponentials and logarithms (including function compositions and inverse functions, properties of logarithms, and logarithmic equations)
  • Geometry and trigonometry (including perimeter, area, and volume, coordinate geometry, trigonometric functions, and identities and equations).


Can I practice using the ALEKS input tools before I begin the Placement Assessment?

ALEKS will begin with a brief tutorial to make sure you are comfortable with the math palette tools before your Placement Assessment begins. The tutorial shows you how to enter different types of answers, how to use the ALEKS calculator, and how to graph. If you aren’t sure how to input an answer, or need help while you are taking the ALEKS Placement Assessment, select the Help button below the answer pallet tools. Going to the tutorial during your Placement Assessment will NOT impact your Placement Assessment results.