Placement Testing

y_.i

Member
Joined
Sep 1, 2016
Messages
20
Hi everyone!

I remember reading about the placement exams that take place around a week into basic. From what I've read, there seems to be conflicting beliefs on whether its worth trying to take advanced classes at West Point.

Are these these tests something I should be studying for? If anyone can provide additional details, I would really appreciate it.

Thank you all!
 

WD1

USMA 2024
Joined
Feb 9, 2019
Messages
290
In my opinion there’s no real reason to take advanced classes here. That said, don’t bomb the math exam cause then you might have to take summer classes after your plebe year.
 

knoxgw

New Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2020
Messages
6
Thank you so much for these! I couldn't find any unofficial opinion on how difficult these placement tests are (ex. math PDF gave the basic definition of a log, but how "in-depth" do logarithm questions go on the test?). While I plan on studying hard beforehand either way, it would be helpful to gauge how most cadets perform; are these usually difficult to pass (earn the 80%)?
 

Precise101

Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2021
Messages
32
Does everyone have to take placement tests or is it only if you want to skip the pre calc class?
 
Joined
Apr 14, 2020
Messages
32
Hi everyone!

I remember reading about the placement exams that take place around a week into basic. From what I've read, there seems to be conflicting beliefs on whether its worth trying to take advanced classes at West Point.

Are these these tests something I should be studying for? If anyone can provide additional details, I would really appreciate it.

Thank you all!
I'm a current cadet. My advice is do your best on all of them and validate as many classes as possible. This will open up more slots for electives in the future and/or will just make your schedule lighter in your cow and firstie years. Based on what I know and have heard, there is no advantage to being in advanced humanities classes (unless you want to major/minor in that field, and even then it may not be worth it) because West Point doesn't weight advanced classes like in high school. So it's just more and harder work that doesn't help your class rank. However, there are advantages to being in advanced physics 1/2 and advanced chemistry 1 because it's the same curriculum but you have less homework and generally (but not always) smarter lab groups. Another thing, West Point has multiple math tracks. If you're not interested in being a STEM major, my recommendation is stay in the easiest math track (MA103 first semester than MA104 second semester). If you are interested in a STEM major, than MA205 (Calculus 2) will be a required class. If this is the case, then do your best on the math placement exams so you can try to validate MA104 (calculus 1), which will mean you have to take one less class which will help your schedule in the future. There's one more math track, unofficially referred to as "Jedi" math. I'm currently in Jedi math, and if you're not interested in majoring in some type of engineering, don't take it, switch out if you're put into it! It doesn't improve your GPA and may even put you at a disadvantage against your peers in the other math tracks. All that being said, if you want to challenge yourself (and yes, hate yourself a little bit), then more power to you. Take Jedi, challenge yourself, and learn as much as you can. I don't know what your background in math is, but ultimately take what you think you can handle. I know this is a long and convoluted post, so if you have any questions, about this or USMA in general, let me know.
 
Joined
Feb 12, 2021
Messages
87
I'm a current cadet. My advice is do your best on all of them and validate as many classes as possible. This will open up more slots for electives in the future and/or will just make your schedule lighter in your cow and firstie years. Based on what I know and have heard, there is no advantage to being in advanced humanities classes (unless you want to major/minor in that field, and even then it may not be worth it) because West Point doesn't weight advanced classes like in high school. So it's just more and harder work that doesn't help your class rank. However, there are advantages to being in advanced physics 1/2 and advanced chemistry 1 because it's the same curriculum but you have less homework and generally (but not always) smarter lab groups. Another thing, West Point has multiple math tracks. If you're not interested in being a STEM major, my recommendation is stay in the easiest math track (MA103 first semester than MA104 second semester). If you are interested in a STEM major, than MA205 (Calculus 2) will be a required class. If this is the case, then do your best on the math placement exams so you can try to validate MA104 (calculus 1), which will mean you have to take one less class which will help your schedule in the future. There's one more math track, unofficially referred to as "Jedi" math. I'm currently in Jedi math, and if you're not interested in majoring in some type of engineering, don't take it, switch out if you're put into it! It doesn't improve your GPA and may even put you at a disadvantage against your peers in the other math tracks. All that being said, if you want to challenge yourself (and yes, hate yourself a little bit), then more power to you. Take Jedi, challenge yourself, and learn as much as you can. I don't know what your background in math is, but ultimately take what you think you can handle. I know this is a long and convoluted post, so if you have any questions, about this or USMA in general, let me know.
In HS (12th Grade), what Math courses did you take?
 
Top