ALEKS Frequently Asked Questions

Let us know if you have any questions that are not answered here. When you are ready, schedule your placement test.


What is ALEKS PPL?

The Assessment and Learning in Knowledge Spaces Placement, Preparation and Learning (ALEKS PPL) mathematics assessment is not a test. This 90-minute assessment is required by GRCC to determine what you know in subjects ranging from Arithmetic to Precalculus. It will give you an idea of your strengths and weaknesses in math, followed by an opportunity to work in a customized ALEKS Preparation and Learning Module to improve your skills, and possibly bypass math courses not required for your degree.

How do I begin using ALEKS PPL?

  • If you will be taking ALEKS non-proctored (online), you will receive a link from the Online Center.
  • If you will be taking ALEKS in a proctored setting, the proctor will provide you with instructions and a password.

What does it cost to take ALEKS PPL?

The cost was included in your course fees. However, there are restrictions on the number of retakes and the time period. 


What are the restrictions on retakes?

Your course fees allow 4 retakes within 12 months of your first assessment. If you attempt more than 4 retakes, or if more than 12 months have passed since your first assessment, you must pay an additional $30 fee. Also, please note the following:

  • Since there is no benefit to retaking an assessment immediately after completing a prior attempt, you must wait 48 hours between retakes.
  • To make each attempt worthwhile and to improve your skills, you must spend at least three hours before your first retake and then five hours in between each additional retake working in your ALEKS Prep and Learning Module.    

Is ALEKS PPL proctored?

  • If your ACT math score is less than 18 or SAT math score less than 25, or if you have no ACT/SAT score, then it is proctored.
  • If your ACT math score is at least 18 or SAT math score at least 25, then you may take it online (unproctored).

Is ALEKS PPL timed?

  • Proctored assessments have a three-hour time limit. 
  •  Online (unproctored) assessments must be completed within a 48-hour time period. 


What if I don’t complete ALEKS PPL in the allotted time?

  • If you are taking it proctored, you will be given a placement result.     
  • If you are taking it unproctored, you must restart the assessment.


What resources may I use while taking ALEKS PPL?

  • You may only use a pen or pencil, and paper.
  •  You may not use your calculator. If a calculator is required, ALEKS will provide one on-screen. 
  • You may not seek help from anyone (friends, family, tutors), or anything (internet, books).


What is my placement result?

It is your percentage mastery on your most recent assessment. To see how course placement is determined, go to, refer to our list of ALEKS PPL Placement Scores.


How long is my placement score valid?

It is valid for 18 months, starting from the date of your most recent assessment. For your most recent assessment placement to remain valid, you must enroll before this 18 month period expires. 


Can I practice using ALEKS before I begin my assessment?

Yes. ALEKS provides a brief tutorial before your assessment begins.


How long do I have access to my Prep and Learning Module?

You have 12 months access, starting from when you begin using your Prep and Learning Module, to be completed within 6 months of your first assessment.


Is there an additional fee for my Prep and Learning Module?

No. The cost is included in your course fees. 


Does progress in my ALEKS Prep and Learning Module count toward course placement?

No. Only assessments are used for course placement. To change your placement result, you must retake the assessment.


What if I do not place into the course I wanted?

Use your Prep and Learning Module to review and learn, then retake the assessment to improve your placement result. 


If I do not place into the course I wanted, can I take it anyway?

No. To take the course you want, you must either achieve the required placement score, or you must pass the mathematics course prerequisite with a C or better.


If I do place into the course I wanted, may I continue to use my Prep and Learning Module?

Yes. The customized review and learning features of ALEKS can be used to improve your chances for success, and earn a better grade in your course.


Where can I get help with ALEKS?