Chances are you’ll have to take at least one math class in college, but there are a few things you should consider before taking on this challenge. Set yourself up for success by asking the following questions before you enroll in a college math course:

Are you in the right math class?

Hopefully you took a math placement test when you started college. If so, you should be in a class that’s the appropriate level for you. If you didn’t, see your academic advisor and ask about taking a placement test. It’s MUCH better to be in a lower level math class and do better, than to be in a class that is too advanced.

Have you considered trying to “CLEP out?”

If you did fairly well in math in high school, you may be able to pass a test that will give you up to three credits each in College Mathematics, College Algebra, Precalculus or Calculus. Visit www.collegeboard.com and click on “Students” and then “CLEP” to learn about the College Level Examination Program (CLEP). The tests cost $80 each, you know instantly whether or not you passed, and you don’t have to report the score to your college unless you pass.

Do you know your math basics?

Even though we all use calculators for practically everything, it’s very important to know how to add, subtract, multiply and divide. If you’re not comfortable with your basic math skills, buy flashcards and practice.

To get started, below are some very good math websites that can help you with math fundamentals all the way up to trigonometry, calculus and statistics.

  • math.com
  • khanacademy (You will need to create a free account)
  • freerice.com (Click on the “Subjects” tab to get to prealgebra and the multiplication tables. For every correct answer 10 grains of rice are donated to the United Nations World Food Program to end hunger.)

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