Calculus Readiness Information and Test

Many students take calculus at Georgetown, typically to satisfy either a core requirement or a requirement of their major program(s) of study. The reason calculus is required by so many major programs is because its concepts form the theoretical underpinnings for many disciplines. Therefore, in order to make it most useful, calculus at Georgetown University is taught with an added emphasis on both concepts and contexts.

Students normally begin their study with MATH-035 Calculus I, but because of the added contextual emphasis students without a strong mathematics background often struggle in this course. To insure that students are ready for Calculus I, we require one of the following in order to enroll in MATH-035:

  • A passing grade on our online placement test (see below)
  • Permission of Professor Mary Erb, Director of Undergraduate Studies, Department of Mathematics and Statistics (

If you are considering registering for MATH-035 Calculus I, you must have a passing grade on our online Calculus Readiness test. To access the test, please visit the Calculus Readiness Information and Test link, managed by our Math department.

Note: When taking the test, students must click on the button ‘Next,’ instead of ‘Grade,’ to move to the next question. If ‘Grade’ is clicked in the middle of the test, the test will end, get graded, and the student will not be able to resume the test. ‘Grade’ should be clicked only at the end, when the student has finished answering all of the questions.

Students who do not score an 18 or higher on the Calculus Readiness test should take MATH-029, Calculus With Review, in the fall. This three-credit course introduces the concepts of calculus, but at a slower pace and with added emphasis on applications and algebraic review. Students taking this course would continue in the spring with specially-marked sections of Calculus I, MATH-035, in which they continue the work they begin in the fall. At the end of the year, students will have had the equivalent of MATH-035 and will have gained a deeper understanding and appreciation for the applications of calculus to different fields.

MATH-029 does not satisfy any Core requirements but does count as an elective.

Please also note that MATH-035 Calculus I is a required course in the economics and math majors, a prerequisite in the political economy major, and a corollary requirement in most major programs in the sciences.