A student may receive credit for specific UCSB mathematics courses by having taken the qualifying exams in Mathematics stated below.
Advanced Placement Test Credit
Calculus AB and Subscore:
Score of 1= 
No unit credit; must take Math Placement Exam (MPE) to determine placement 
Score of 2= 
No unit credit; placement into Math 2A or 3A without taking MPE 
Score of 3, 4, or 5 = 
4 units of credit applied to Math 3A; placement into Math 2B or 3B 
Calculus BC Test and Subscore:
Score of 1= 
No unit credit; must take MPE to determine placement 
Score of 2= 
No unit credit; placement into Math 2A or 3A without taking MPE 
Score of 3,4 or 5= 
8 units of credit applied to Math 3AB; placement into Math 4A 
International Baccalureate Exam Credit
Higher Level Mathematics Analysis & Approaches
Score of 5,6 or 7= 
8 units of credit applied to Math 3AB; placement into Math 4A 
Higher Level Mathematics (Before Spring 2021)
Score of 5,6 or 7= 
8 units of credit applied to Math 3AB; placement into Math 3B 
Cambridge International A Level Exam Credit
Mathematics Exam (As of 2022)
Grade of A,B or C= 
4 units of credit applied to Math 3A; placement into Math 3B 
Mathematics Further Exam (As of 2022)
Grade of A,B or C= 
4 units of credit applied to Math 4A; placement into Math 4B 
*If you took the Cambridge International A Level exam before 2022, please use the A Level (GCE) Credit and Chart in UC Santa Barbara's General Catalog, found here.
Credit by Examination
The UCSB Mathematics department does not accept any course credit via examination (except for certain AP, IB, and Cambridge Exams). Students must complete Math courses with a passing grade in order to receive credit.
The Mathematics Placement Exam (MPE)
The Mathematics Placement Exam is used to determine a student's readiness for an introductory calculus class, either Math 2A or Math 3A. (Please see the list below for majors that require these series). This test is not required for students who wish to take Math 34A*.
* What is the difference between the Calculus 2 or 3 series and the 34 series? Math 34AB is a terminal series designed for students whose majors require a basic understanding of calculus and its applications in the social and biological sciences. Math 2AB/3AB is for students in the physical sciences and engineering, or for those who wish to study calculus beyond the first year. They are followed by Math 4AB and Math 6AB.
The Math Placement Exam is:

Free of charge

Available to take without preregistration

A multiple choice exam with 60 questions

Administered online several times an academic year
If your enrollment in a math course hinges on your test score, take the test as early as possible. This allows you time to review the suggested topics and even retake the test after studying before the new test becomes available.
Topics

Exponents and Radicals

Functions and their Graphs

Geometry & Geometric Applications

Linear Equations and Inequalities, Absolute Values, and their Graphs

Logarithmic and Exponential Functions and their Graphs

Polynomials and Polynomial Equations and their Graphs

Rational Expressions and their Graphs

Trigonometry
Notice that you are expected to show competence in each of these areas. At the end of the exam, you will be NOT given a placement recommendation immediately. However, you will be told how you did in each of these topic areas so you can begin reviewing the areas you are weakest in (either in anticipation of enrolling in a math course or in order to prepare to retake the placement exam).
Preparation
 We recommend taking an online readiness test to practice for the MPE.
 Watch and review Precalculus tutorials through Khan Academy.
Recommended refresher books

Precalculus Review Topics [PDF] by Sara Hawtrey Jones.

JustInTime Algebra and Trigonometry by Mueller & Brent. AddisonWesley ISBN 0201419513

Schaum's Outline of College Algebra by Spiegel. McGraw Hill ISBN 0070602662. (More basic than the other Schaum's Outline book.)

Schaum's Outline of Precalculus by Fred Safier. McGraw Hill ISBN 0070572615. (More advanced than the other Schaum's Outline book.)
After taking the test
After the test scores are processed by the Mathematics Department, a placement recommendation code will be uploaded to GOLD within two weeks of the exam. These codes are as follows:
4. Congratulations! A code of 4 indicates that you have mastered the prerequisite material enough to be prepared to succeed in Math 3A. That is, a code of 4 lets you enroll in Math 3A.
3. You are more prepared to succeed in Math 2A, which incorporates precalculus review into the curriculum, than in Math 3A. You are permitted to enroll in Math 3A at your own risk. That is, a code of 3 permits you to enroll in Math 2A or Math 3A.
2. You are prepared to succeed in Math 2A, which incorporates precalculus review into the curriculum, but not Math 3A. If Math 2A is not available, you will need to retake the placement exam after reviewing the prerequisite material or enroll in a course in precalculus at a community college or in an elearning class offered by the University of California. That is, a code of 2 allows you to enroll in Math 2A but not in Math 3A.
1. You have not shown mastery of the prerequisite material. You are encouraged to enroll in a course in precalculus at a community college or in an elearning class offered by the University of California. You may also retake the placement exam after reviewing the prerequisite material, but substantial review will be required. That is, a code of 1 does not permit you to enroll in Math 2A or Math 3A.
Test results are valid for one calendar year. If you do not register for an appropriate math class in that time, you will need to take the MPE again. If you take the placement test more than once, your highest score will either remain or take the place of the lower score.
The Exam
You may take this exam only once per calendar month. If you stop in the middle of the exam or do not pass the exam, you must retake the exam during the next month. To take the exam, please have your Perm Number ready. You must enter your Perm Number when asked for Enrollment ID.
During December: Click here to begin the test.
During January: Click here to begin the test.
Majors that require the Math 3 series 
Majors that accept the 34 series 
College of Letters and Science 
College of Letters and Science 
BS BioChemistryMolecular Biology

BS Aquatic Biology

College of Engineering 
College of Engineering 
BS Chemical Engineering 

College of Creative Studies 
College of Creative Studies 
Math and Science Programs 
