If you are pursuing a major that requires CHEM 115 in your program, the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry would like to be sure that you have the necessary knowledge and skills to be successful in the course. Placement at the appropriate level is of great benefit to students, leading to more rewarding and successful experiences in their chemistry courses. Therefore, the department requires that all students exhibit a satisfactory performance on a 60-minute placement exam to enroll in CHEM 115. You do not need to take this exam to enroll in CHEM 100, CHEM 101 or CHEM 180.
The exam consists of 50 multiple choice questions and tests high school chemistry knowledge. Please refer to the preparation link for information about the topics covered on the placement exam and recommended study guides. A periodic table will be provided to you with the exam, along with any equations or conversion factors needed. You will need a non-programmable scientific calculator. Calculators with full "QWERTY" keyboards are not allowed.
You should plan to register for CHEM 115 before you take the placement exam, but then you must take the placement exam PRIOR to the start of the semester to be allowed to stay in the course. The exam dates are posted in the DATES area. The exam is only given on the dates listed and no makeups or other exam dates are scheduled. Register early to get a seat for the exam.
*Test results are good for one year. Please note that tests taken in June are intended for the Summer session. The Chem 115 placement test can only be taken once during the August or January exam period.*
Chemistry 115 Exam scores:
Only correct answers are counted for your score. A minimum passing score has not been determined yet, but will likely be between 26 and 30. You must enter your SFSU ID on the answer sheet so that your scores will be posted to your record. Scores appear within 5 days of the exam.
Location Given, in detail, at time of registration.