Chemistry Assessment

Chemistry Readiness: Partnership for Success in Chemistry

The Chemistry Assessment is now available.

Please read below before purchasing the chemistry assessment. Once you are ready to purchase the chemistry assessment, you can purchase it here:


The deadline to complete the chemistry assessment is August 19.


Chemistry Assessment

The College of Natural Sciences (CNS) and the Department of Chemistry have created a Chemistry Readiness Program for students planning to enroll in CH301, the introductory general chemistry course for STEM and health professions students. It serves two purposes: satisfying the CH301 pre-requisite and preparing students to succeed in the course. 

The first step in the program is to complete the Chemistry Assessment administered by the college’s Quest Learning and Assessment office. Students who pass the Chemistry Assessment meet the pre-requisite and can enroll in CH301. Some students will be required to complete additional work in the Chemistry Readiness Modules in Canvas to remain enrolled in CH 301.

All students are encouraged to complete the Canvas modules to identify weaknesses in their chemistry and math foundation.

Who must take the UT Chemistry Assessment?

All students intending to enroll in CH301 must take the assessment. 

Additionally, the following CNS majors are required to take the chemistry assessment prior to attending summer orientation:

  • Biochemistry
  • Medical Laboratory Science
  • Biology
  • Neuroscience
  • Chemistry
  • Nutrition
  • Environmental Science
  • Human Development & Family Sciences
  • Human Ecology
  • Public Health
Why must I take the UT Chemistry Assessment?

Your success in CH301 is our primary concern to the college and the department. Most students who struggle in CH301 do so because they have an inadequate foundation in the basic chemistry and math skills expected by the chemistry faculty when they teach CH301. The only way you can know for sure that you possess those foundational skills is to complete an assessment prepared by the chemistry faculty and specific to CH301.

What if I already have credit for chemistry through AP, IB or CLEP exams?

If you intend to enroll in CH301, you are required to complete the assessment regardless of what possible credit you might be eligible to receive. If you decide to enroll in a subsequent course in the chemistry sequence, for example, CH302 or organic chemistry, you do not have to take the assessment. But please discuss this option with your academic advisor—first-time college students testing out of the introductory science sequences often underestimate the difficulties of later coursework and struggle to be successful. CNS first-year students in the majors listed above with credit for CH 301 or beyond are still required to take the chemistry assessment prior to attending orientation.

How does the Chemistry Readiness Program work?

The Chemistry Readiness Program has two components: the initial Chemistry Assessment through Quest and a subsequent Chemistry Readiness Course through Canvas.

  • Upon signing, students are immediately directed to take a 25-question multiple-choice assessment. Details of content and format are provided elsewhere in the FAQs. Upon completion of the assessment, students are told whether they have met the pre-requisite for CH301 or need to do more work in Canvas modules.
  • Upon completion of the Chemistry Assessment, the Canvas Chemistry Learning Modules are activated. Students are immediately instructed as to whether completion of these Canvas materials is required to meet CH301 pre-requisites or encouraged to ensure readiness for CH301. The Canvas modules are described in more detail in other FAQs but consist of a collection of mini-assessment of basic math and chemistry foundational material followed by a series of multi-modality tutorials and questions.
What chemistry topics are covered on the Chemistry Assessment and in the Chemistry Readiness Course?

The assessment covers a variety of high-school-level chemistry topics, each of which is considered prior knowledge by our instructors. The chemistry content is traditionally found in a Sophomore year high-school chemistry course with 40 learning objectives found across the ten Chemistry Readiness Canvas modules shown below.

Math Concepts

  • Arithmetic and Algebraic Manipulation
  • Functional Relationships
  • Scientific Notation
  • Unit Conversions

Chemistry Basics

  • Atomic Structure
  • Periodic Table
  • Naming Ionic and Covalent Compounds
  • Chemistry Reactions


  • Compositional Stoichiometry
  • Reaction Stoichiometry
What is the format of the Quest assessment?

The assessment consists of 25 multiple-choice questions. It is untimed and you may use all the time you need, but it must be completed in one sitting. The usual time to complete the assessment is about 45 minutes to one hour. 

What resources may I use on the Chemistry Assessment?

You may use a calculator and a periodic table. You are not to access any other source of information, nor may you receive assistance from others. 

Is the Chemistry Assessment proctored?

The assessment is not proctored. You will sign a form at the beginning of the assessment indicating that you will abide by the UT Honor Code.

It must be stressed that receiving aid on the assessment serves no useful function. The intention is to help you be successful in the actual CH301 course and that can only happen if you allow the assessment to identify areas of math and chemistry that need improvement. 

Is completion of the Chemistry Readiness Course required?

Instructions for whether you are required to complete the Chemistry Readiness modules are given on the results page of your Chemistry Assessment in Quest. There are two possible results:

  • Canvas Readiness Required: If you do not meet a minimum score on the Chemistry Assessment then you will be required to complete the Chemistry Readiness modules to be eligible to enroll in CH301 in the fall. You MUST complete the modules by August 19, or you will be dropped from CH301. 
  • Canvas Readiness Optional: You pass the Chemistry Assessment and are immediately told that you have met the pre-requisites to enroll in CH301, however you are strongly encouraged to continue to complete the Canvas modules. The Chemistry Readiness Course provides a quick way to target your weak areas and work on them before starting CH301 in the fall. 
How do the Canvas Chemistry Readiness Modules work?

The Canvas Readiness Modules are in two parts:

  • Ten short mini-assessments across the 40 learning outcomes
  • Ten learning modules that provide tutorial on the 40 learning outcomes and use a question bank to assess your mastery.

Upon entering Canvas, you will watch a short video that shows you how to navigate the Chemistry Readiness Course. For those of you unfamiliar with Canvas, it is the learning management system used by UT Austin, so this is also a great way to get used to it.

If you are required to complete the Chemistry Readiness Course, this is done by completing all ten of the modules.

How long does it take to complete the Canvas Chemistry Modules?

This depends on how well you do on the mini-assessments, which is why you should take them seriously. If you pass each of the mini-assessments, you will have completed the modules in less than an hour.

Usually, students pass several of the mini assessments, reducing the time needed in the Canvas modules, and most finish the entire Canvas module in just a few hours. 

Can I receive help with the Chemistry Readiness Course?

As with the Chemistry Assessment, the Canvas modules are for your benefit. In the end, we want you to be prepared for CH301 and it is up to you to decide how to do it. The learning modules provide detailed explanations and examples of the math and chemistry content, but you can look to other sources if you would like and can ask for help from others. In the end, you need to leave the course feeling like you understand the material better than when you started.

What happens if I don’t complete the Chemistry Readiness Program?

By August 19th you must complete the Chemistry Readiness Program (by passing either the Quest assessment or finishing the Canvas modules). If you do not, you will be automatically dropped from your CH301 and CH104M lecture and lab courses and directed to an adviser to register for CH301N, the introductory general chemistry course. Completion of the CH301N course satisfies the prerequisite for CH301.

How long is my Chemistry Assessment completion valid?

The completion of the assessment is valid for one long semester. After that, the assessment expires, and the Chemistry Assessment must be repurchased and retaken if you wish to take CH 301 in a later semester.

Does the chemistry assessment affect my grade in my CH 301 class?

No. The chemistry assessment is only used to help you prepare for your CH 301 course and does not affect any of your grades on your assignments in your CH 301 course.

How do I get technical support for the Quest and Canvas Assessments?

Some issues can be resolved by the College of Natural Sciences support team. If you're having access issues, please email:

Please include your UT EID and a copy of your Chemistry Package email purchase receipt.