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Mathematics Competency Requirement

The mathematics competency requirement is embedded in the General Education Program.

The mathematics learning skills category of general education consists of two parts: the mathematics competency requirement and the general education mathematics requirement. You must satisfy the mathematics competency requirement before you may take any mathematics courses that fulfill the general education mathematics requirement.

You can tell if you have met the mathematics competency requirement by looking at your Degree Works report.

Competency Requirement

If you have not already met the mathematics competency requirement, you may do so in one of the following ways:

  1. Pass the Mathematics Competency Exam (see below). SUNY Plattsburgh does not accept placement scores from other colleges.
  2. Pass MAT 101 here at SUNY Plattsburgh. Until you meet the mathematics competency requirement, MAT 101 is the only mathematics course that you can register for. A passing grade in MAT 101 (C or better) satisfies the mathematics competency requirement. MAT 101 does not fulfill the general education mathematics requirement.
  3. Score at least 530 on the SAT Mathematics section, or at least 21 on the ACT Mathematics section. If you entered SUNY Plattsburgh as a first-year student, these scores were reported to us as part of your application, so this possibility has already been explored. If you entered as a transfer student, we may not have received your SAT or ACT scores. In this case, you can check with your high school guidance office, and if your score is sufficient, bring a copy of your high school transcript indicating your exam score to the mathematics department so that your record may be updated.
  4. Transfer a course that is equivalent to MAT 101 or higher from another college. All courses that transfer to SUNY Plattsburgh are listed on your Degree Works report. A course that transfers as a “mathematics elective — MAT XXX” does NOT satisfy the mathematics competency requirement.

SUNY Plattsburgh offers the mathematics competency exam twice each semester. You do not need to register to take the exam; simply show up with a #2 lead pencil and a knowledge of basic algebra. Calculators are NOT allowed on this exam. The exam is machine scored and each student’s record is updated by the following day.

Call or visit mathematics department to find out the date, time and place for the next mathematics competency exam. The department office is Hawkins 244; the phone number is 518-564-4137.

If you take but do not pass the mathematics competency exam, you should take MAT 101 to meet the mathematics competency requirement. We recommend that you do this at the earliest opportunity. We offer MAT 101 each semester, and during session 1 each summer.

Remember, you must complete the mathematics competency requirement BEFORE you can take any mathematics course beyond MAT 101, including those courses that fulfill the general education mathematics requirement. The mathematics competency requirement asks that you demonstrate knowledge of basic algebra, which will help you succeed not only in the general education mathematics courses but also in many other required courses in general education and your major or minor programs. It is in your best interest to meet this requirement as early as possible in your career here at SUNY Plattsburgh.

If you have questions regarding the mathematics competency exam or requirement, feel free to contact the mathematics department.

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