Course Placements

With more than 150 math courses offered, where do you start? Is there a logical sequence to follow? Are their particular courses that align better to your math field?

Fortunately, we've devised a step-by-step process to guide you in the right direction. After reviewing these Introductory Course Placement steps, you may want to browse our complete Course directory, and examine Courses segmented by Math Fields and Courses for Particular Career Paths.

Introductory Course Placement

Our introductory math courses tend to be in very high demand. Enrollment in full sections of these high-demand courses is handled primarily by the Wait Lists. For more information, please review our Enrollment Policies. The guidance below is intended for incoming students and for undergraduates who have not yet taken a math course at Duke.

Step 1.

Read all of the information in the Placement Guidelines that might be relevant to your situation. The placement page should help most students to determine their own proper placement.

Step 2.

Read the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's) regarding placement. These will help ensure you're making the correct course choice for your particular background and academic plans. We specifically cover questions about course sequencing for students who enter Duke with Advanced Placement credit, and address common questions from engineering students.

Step 3.

Consider taking one or more of our Self-Assessments – for the course you are considering taking, and/or for its prerequisite – to confirm that you are sufficiently prepared.

Step 4.

If you have questions about the enrollment process and you already know the course that you want to take, please carefully read through our Enrollment Policies.

Additional Assistance

Placement Open House

We hold a Placement Open House each Fall, where members of the faculty discuss their courses and provide more insight. Typically, these are held from 9AM-noon on the Saturday morning before the first day of classes, in Physics 123. For Fall 2020, this Open House was held Aug. 15 via Zoom sessions.

Credit for Courses Taken Elsewhere

If you are trying to get pre-matriculation credit for a course that you have already taken elsewhere, that process begins by contacting the Registrar's Office. Go to the Trinity College Credit: AP, IPC, and PMC page for more information and instructions.

Exemption for Course Required by your Major

If you have a question about getting an exemption from taking a particular math course required for one of your intended majors or minors, you must ask the Director of Undergraduate Studies in that department. The Mathematics Department does not arbitrate requirements for majors in other departments.