Mathematics + Statistics Challenge Exams

Mathematics and Statistics Challenge Exams are one alternative way to earn credit in mathematics or statistics outside of a classroom. 


All exam arrangements must be made by contacting the undergraduate advisor, Dr. Beatriz Lafferriere (

Challenge Exams offered by the department:

MTH 251,  Calculus I
MTH 252, Calculus II
MTH 253, Calculus III
MTH 254, Calculus IV
MTH 261, Introduction to Linear Algebra         
STAT 243, Introduction to Probability and Statistics I
STAT 244, Introduction to Probability and Statistics II

Math & Stat Challenge Exam Policies:

1.    The exam is comprehensive
2.    The exam should be completed in three hours
3.    Student must have 80% or more of the exam correct to receive a passing grade of P.
4.    Exams are only given during final exams week of each term.
5.    Contact the undergraduate adviser to arrange the exam at least two weeks before final exams week starts.        

Eligibility Requirements for Challenge Exam:

1.    Students must be formally admitted to Portland State University as an undergraduate
2.    Be currently registered or have completed one PSU course.

Guidelines governing PSU Challenge Exams:

1.    Not all courses in all departments are open to challenge. Each academic unit decides which of its courses are available to undergraduates for the Challenge Exams. The determination by the department is final. No courses numbered 199, 299, 399, or 401 to 410 inclusive are eligible for credit by examination.
2.    The examinations administered vary according to the departments, college, or schools which administer them, and may include midterm and/or final examinations in current courses or special examinations designed for students “challenging” courses whether or not the courses are currently being offered.
3.    Credit earned by examination may not be received in a course which:
•    Duplicates credit previously earned by a student, or
•    Is more elementary, as determined by departmental, college, or school regulations, than a course in which the student has already received credit.
4.    A student who has taken but not passed a course may subsequently attempt credit in that course by examination. Only one such attempt is permitted. In the event of failure, results will not be recorded on a student’s academic record. Should an examination not be passed, credit can be obtained by repeating the course.
5.    Credit by Exam uses Pass/No Pass grading. 
6.    Credit by examination does not count toward residence credit.
7.    Credit by examination is not governed by the GPA Repeat Policy.

Application for PSU Credit by Examination and cost:

1.    Students wishing to take examinations for Portland State University courses should complete the CPL form
2.    Pay the fee at the Cashier’s Office
3.    Return the completed form, with “PAID” stamp from the Cashier’s Office, to the department to arrange for the exam.