Chemistry Placement
Looking to enroll in introductory chemistry courses at UCI? Learn about necessary enrollment criteria and your placement options, including placement exams.


Chemistry Placement

Chemistry 1A enrollment

Students who plan to enroll in general chemistry 1A at UCI must enroll in the UCI Chemistry Placement Test (click ‘Enroll in Course’ then ‘Go to the Course’):

All students who take the Canvas quiz, regardless of their score, will be allowed to enroll in Chem 1A (please allow up to 24 hours to be cleared). However, many students may need additional preparation to succeed.

Students should carefully read the documents included on the canvas page prior to and after taking the quiz. This will provide advice for using the quiz score along with the math and science background of the student. The “Using your Results” page will instruct students on whether they should consider enrolling in Chem 1X or an ALEKS preparatory module.

Students who possess the following are not required to take the UCI Chemistry Placement Test, although it is still recommended:

Path 1: SAT Math Reasoning test score of 600 or higher

Path 2: ACT Math test score of 27 or higher  

Path 3: AP Chemistry exam score of 3 

Path 4: SAT Chemistry subject exam score of 700 or higher

Path 5: Completion of or concurrent enrollment in Mathematics 5A or Mathematics 2A or Physics 7C (or the Math 2A or Physics 7C equivalent from another college or AP exam score)

ALEKS Preparatory Module: 

Complete 85% of the topics. The ALEKS module is designed to test for individualized knowledge gaps and utilize computerized adaptive learning software to fill the gaps. This is a not-for-credit course. Cost: $30.  

ALEKS information:

If you do not achieve the required 85% of mastered topics, the best option is to enroll in CHEM 1X for the Fall. If you enroll in CHEM 1X you have the option of concurrent enrollment with CHEM 1A in the Fall. It is recommend that only students with strong math skills and high school background in chemistry enroll in 1A in addition to 1X.

Chemistry 1B enrollment

Students who receive a 4 or 5 on the Chemistry AP exam have course credit for Chemistry 1A and can enroll in Chemistry 1B. 

Chemistry M2A (and M2LA) enrollment

For Chemistry majors only. All Chemistry majors must take Chemistry M2A and M2LA in the Fall quarter, regardless of AP credit. 

Chemistry H2A (and H2LA) enrollment

Students who receive a 4 or 5 on the Chemistry AP exam, or a 700 or above on the AP Chemistry subject exam, may enroll in this course. It is the Honors version of general chemistry. It covers the same material as Chemistry 1A but in more depth and with more complex examples.

Although not required, it is also advisable that students have completed one year of high school physics and be ready for at least Mathematics 2A (first quarter calculus).

First-Year students admitted to the Campuswide Honors Collegium who are required by their major to complete one full year of General Chemistry (except Biological Sciences, Nursing, Math, and Public Health students) must enroll in this course.

• CHC students who have not completed a year of chemistry in high school, and/or who didn’t take calculus in high school, please contact about this requirement.
• CHC students who have completed chemistry classes at college, please contact
about this requirement.