Freshman students are encouraged to sign up for placement exams given during Orientation. Scores on the advanced-standing exams are used to award course credit and to ensure proper course placement. Although a specific test can only be attempted once, you may take as many different advanced-standing exams as you like at no additional cost. You may take these placement exams at orientation or before the last day to add classes for the semester that you enter LSU for free. After this, students must pay a fee to attempt these placement exams.
You have nothing to lose by attempting an exam during orientation. If you do not pass the exam, nothing is entered on your academic record. If you receive a passing score on an exam and you enroll at LSU within two years, a grade of “P” (passed) and regular LSU credit are entered on your academic record. The “P” grade does not affect your earned LSU grade-point average.
Students who may be anticipating credit in a course via AP, CLEP or IB exams are still encouraged to take an LSU placement exam as well. LSU will honor a student’s best placement.
Credit hours earned at Spring Invitational or at one of the Freshman Orientation, Advising, and Pre-registration Programs can be used only at the LSU-Baton Rouge campus. Credits earned will be used to place freshmen in courses, but will not appear on your official student record until the middle of your first semester at LSU.
|Recommended Exams by Senior College|
|Art & Design||X|
|Coast & Environment||X||X||X|
|Human Sciences & Education
|Child and Family Studies||X||X|
|Human Resource Education||X||X|
|Elementary Education, Early Childhood Education, Dual Certification||X|
|Humanities & Social Sciences||X*|
|Music & Dramatic Arts||X||X||X|
|Allied Health (including Pre-Pharmacy)||X||X||X|
|*Required if course was taken in high school.**Recommended for students majoring in Nutrition and Food Sciences/Premedical and Food Science and Technology.***Optional.
Undeclared students should attempt any exams for which they have high school credit.
You are encouraged to take as many placement exams as possible. Please review the chart above that outlines exam recommendations based on the suggestions of senior college advisers in each respective area.
Please also review the following guidelines when making decisions about which placement exams to attempt:
Foreign Language Exams:
- If you have taken French in high school and plan to take French at LSU, you MUST take the French placement exam.
- If you have two or more years of high school Spanish and plan to take Spanish at LSU, you MUST take the Spanish placement exam at orientation or before the last day to add classes for the semester you enter LSU. If you have two or more years of high school Spanish, you will not be placed lower than Spanish 1152.
- If you have less than two years of high school Spanish and plan to take Spanish at LSU, you may attempt the Spanish placement exam, but it is not required. If you choose not to take the Spanish placement exam, you will be placed in Spanish 1101.
- You should take a foreign language exam if you have received high school credit in that language and plan to take classes in that language at LSU.
- NOTE REGARDING LANGUAGE EXAMS FOR NATIVE SPEAKERS: Native speakers of a language cannot enroll in first or second year level classes in that language, nor can they be awarded credit or absolved of any foreign language requirement in their native language. Courses in the catalog will clearly state if native speakers are restricted from receiving credit for the course. They also cannot take the placement test in that language.
Trigonometry Placement Exam:
- Biochemistry, Biological Science, Chemistry, Mathematics, Geology, Microbiology and Physics majors MUST schedule the Trigonometry exam.
The following is a list of exams offered:
- Calculus I (5 semester hours credit) – The calculus examination covers college-level work. If you have a strong background in algebra, trigonometry, and college-level calculus, you may want to take this exam. Typically only about 10 percent of students attempting this exam receive advanced-standing credit for calculus. Topics include limits; continuity; derivations of polynomial, rational, exponential, logarithmic, and trigonometric functions; tangent line to a curve; velocity; chain rule; implicit differentiation; properties of graphs (maxima, minima, inflection points); related rates; applied optimization problems; antiderivatives; integration by substitution; and applications of integration (area of a plane region, volume of a solid of revolution, work).
- Chemistry (3 semester hours credit) – Non-graphing calculators are permitted. This examination is recommended for students whose M-ACT scores are at least 24 and who feel that their performance in high school chemistry may qualify them for advanced placement in chemistry at LSU. Topics include: modern view of the atomic structure, nomenclature, stoichiometry, reactions in aqueous solution, introduction to Enthalpy, electronic structure of atoms, periodic trends of the elements, basic concepts of chemical bonding (including Lewis structures), molecular geometry and bonding theories, gas properties and gas laws, liquids, intermolecular forces, and properties of solutions.
- Foreign Language (4-14 semester hours credit) – All beginning freshman who have high school credit in French, German, or Latin and wish to continue studying the same language at LSU are required to take the placement examination in that language. The examination score determines the course level at which you begin study of this language at LSU. You can receive advanced credit for each course prerequisite to the course of initial placement, up to a maximum of 14 hours of credit. Students with high school credit in Spanish should refer to the section on Spanish below. NOTE: Native speakers of a language cannot enroll in 1st or 2nd year level classes in that language, nor can they be awarded credit or absolved of any foreign language requirements in their native tongue for courses marked in the General Catalog with an asterisk (*). They also cannot take the placement test in that language.
- French (4-14 semester hours credit) – In preparation for the French exam, students should skim through their French textbook from high school and build a learning objective list for each chapter. As an example you will find below the list of learning objectives that corresponds to the first chapter of the textbook LSU currently uses in the department .
Chapitre préliminaire: Présentons-nous!
Students will be able to:
- Greet people, make introductions, say goodbye
- Identify objects in the classroom
- Follow classroom instructions
- Spell words in French
- Describe the public education system in France
- Describe the role of French in the world today
- Les pronoms sujets et le verbe « être »
- Les pronoms disjoints
- Le genre et les articles au singulier
- Le nombre et les articles au pluriel
- Pour vous présenter
- Pour saluer
- Pour prendre congé
- Expressions avec « être »
- La salle de classe
- Expressions utiles dans la salle de classe
- Merci/de rien
Vie et culture:
- La bise
- « Tu » et « vous »
- La scolarité en France
- Spanish (4-14 semester hours credit) – If you have two or more years of high school Spanish and plan to take Spanish at LSU, you MUST take the Spanish placement exam at orientation or before the last day to add classes for the semester that you enter LSU. If you have two or more years of high school Spanish, you will not be placed lower than Spanish 1152. If you have had less than two years of high school Spanish and plan to take Spanish at LSU, you may attempt the Spanish placement exam, but it is not required. If you choose not to take the Spanish placement exam and have less than two years of high school Spanish, you will be placed in Spanish 1101. NOTE: Native speakers of a language cannot enroll in 1st or 2nd year level classes in that language, nor can they be awarded credit or absolved of any foreign language requirements in their native tongue for courses marked in the General Catalog with an asterisk (*). They also cannot take the placement test in that language.
- Trigonometry (3 semester hours credit) – This placement test is not required, but is strongly recommended. The exam covers: radian measure, trigonometric functions and their graphs, trigonometric identities, inverse trigonometric functions, and solving triangles. Visit www.math.lsu.edu/ugrad/PlacementCredit for sample questions
- Other – LSU awards credit in recognition of acceptable scores achieved on advanced placement (AP) examinations of the College Board, subject examinations of the College Level Examination Program (CLEP), and International Baccalaureate (IB) examinations. If you have taken any of these examinations, you should inquire at the Office of Enrollment Management about credit that may be awarded to you on either basis or refer to the LSU General Catalog.