What is the Basic Skills Test?
The BST is an assessment test that covers high-school mathematics
skills that are essential for the passing of a university-level
calculus course. We recommend that students registered in Math 110 take
the optional Basic Skills Test as a way of assessing their math skills.
Those who score 15 or higher out of 30 will be eligible to take Math
180 or 184. Those who score 15 or higher out of 30 and who have also
completed a high-school calculus course will be eligible to take Math
100, 102, or 104.
Why is this test in place?
The data from past final exams show that 75% of students' mistakes are related to basic high-school materials. Students often understand the concepts from calculus, but their algebra tools fail them when they are solving problems. The test will show you where your basic weaknesses are, and will provide you with means to improve.
Students who do not receive a score of 15 out of 30 on the basic skills test will take Math 110 which reviews necessary background material in addition to covering the calculus content of Math 100, 102, 104, 180, or 184.
When and where will the test be given?
The next sitting of the BST will take place on May 13th, from 6:00
7:30 pm, in LSK Room 121. The August sitting will be on the 29th,
the September sitting on the 5th. Registration for the May 13,
sitting is now open.
You can only take the test once a year. The test will last for 90 minutes and will be given only on the Vancouver campus of UBC. If you need to take the test, you are encouraged to do so as early as possible, so that any resulting rearrangement of your course timetable can be done before the start of classes.
Click here to
sign up for
one of the BST test sittings. Details of times of sittings are
available when you sign up.
What will the format of the test be?
The test will consist of 30 questions and will be administered on
computers. The test includes both multiple-choice and open-ended
questions. We will provide you with paper to work out your
A sample test is provided.
What are the contents of the test?
What aids are allowed for the test?
What do you need to bring to the test?
How difficult is the test?
The level of difficulty will be similar to the sample test above.
How do I prepare for the test?