The Chemistry Challenge Exam is only required of students wishing to enroll directly into Chemistry 11 (General Chemistry 1) who want to bypass Chemistry 10 (Introductory General Chemistry). All other students are not required to take the test.
Do I need an appointment?
No. Testing takes place during normal testing hours. You must bring a government issued photo identification. We reserve the right to request two forms of ID.
Who is eligible to take the Chemistry Challenge Test?
Any student who wishes to place into Chemistry 11, provided he/she has not attempted Chemistry 10 (e.g., has a W or another grade in class) or is currently enrolled in Chemistry 10.
What is the Purpose of Chemistry Challenge Exam?
The test serves two purposes:
- It acquaints students with the skills that are needed to succeed in the introductory chemistry series; and
- It serves to identify those students who are eligible for placement into Chemistry 11.
For some students, the examination will be a warning that their chances of obtaining a satisfactory grade in Chemistry 11 are very slight and they should improve their skills by enrolling and completing Chemistry 10 first.
What is the name of the Chemistry Challenge Exam?
SMC uses the California Chemistry Diagnostic Test to assess students' skills in chemistry. This is a timed, paper-pencil test consisting of 44 questions. Students will be given 45 minutes to complete the test. The test booklet will contain all information needed to successfully complete the exam. Non-programmable calculators are permitted, however, you cannot use any smartphone or such other device.
What is the content of the Chemistry Challenge Exam?
This test consists of questions based on high school chemistry and high school mathematics. Topics and skills tested will include:
- Math: solving simple algebraic equations; use of proportions and percentages; solving word problems.
- Chemistry: the majority of items are concerned with concepts addressed in Chemistry 10, including: elements and their properties, chemical formulas, concentrations of solutions, gases, oxidation numbers, redox reactions and the concepts of acids and bases.
How can I best prepare for the Chemistry Challenge Exam?
The best preparation for the test (and for Chemistry 11) is to review your algebra and chemistry skills. You should consider borrowing a Chemistry 10 textbook from the SMC Library to familiarize yourself with problems you will be tested on. You can also review other test preparation guides available at bookstores. You may also want to review the materials found at the following websites: