Requirements to Enroll in Math Courses

There are two series of calculus courses at UCSD. Math 10A/B/C are standard calculus courses. Math 20A/B/C are calculus for science and engineering. 

Math 3C is the precalculus course that prepares students for Math 10A, and Math 4C is the precalculus course that prepares students for Math 20A.

Check your major to see which series you should enroll in.

Calculus series Math 3C, 10A/B/C

This series meets minimum requirements for many non-quantitative majors and meets the general education requirements of most of the UCSD colleges. Check with your college and major to ensure this course meets their requirements.

Math 3C: Precalculus

Math 3C is the precalculus course for those intending to take Math 10A.

Requirements:

  • Score of 600 or higher on SAT I Math; OR
  • Qualification on the MPE.

Students should have at least 3 years of high school mathematics up to and including Algebra II (Intermediate Algebra). Trigonometry is not required as background for this course but you should have some introduction to trigonometry. Any student with background less than Algebra II (Intermediate Algebra) or receiving a recommendation of 3C, review on the MPE should consider taking Intermediate Algebra at a community college prior to Math 3C. Math 3C is offered in the fall and winter quarters.

Math 10A: Calculus

Math 10A is a beginning calculus course for students NOT focusing on science or engineering.

Requirements - One of the following:

  • Qualification on the MPE; OR
  • Score of 2 on an AP Calculus Exam; OR
  • Score of 600 or higher on the SAT II Math Level 2 exam; OR
  • Grade of C or better in Math 3C or a grade of C- or better in Math 4C.

High school or community college precalculus courses may NOT be used to qualify for Math 10A.

You may not take Math 10A for credit if you already received credit by AP Calculus score or if you have credit for Math 20A.

Math 10B/C Calculus

Consult the course catalog for a description of these courses and their prerequisites, or see the AP Calculus exam prerequisites.

Calculus for Science and Engineering series Math 4C, 20A/B/C

The Math 20ABC course sequence satisfies mathematics prerequisites for all majors, in particular chemistry, engineering, management science, mathematics, molecular biology, physics, and other physical sciences.

Math 4C: Precalculus for Science and Engineering

Math 4C is the precalculus course for those intending to take Math 20A

Requirements:

  • Students must take the MPE to qualify for Math 4C. 

Students should have at least 3 years of high school mathematics including trigonometry as preparation for this course. Math 4C is usually offered in the fall and winter quarters.

Math 20A: Calculus for Science and Engineering

Math 20A is a beginning calculus course for students with a mathematics background that has specifically prepared them for calculus. Such preparation should include a Precalculus or Mathematical Analysis course.

Requirements - One of the following:

  • Qualification on the MPE; OR
  • Score of 650 or higher on the SAT II Math Level 2 exam; OR
  • Score of 2 or 3 on the AP Calculus AB exam (or an equivalent AB subgrade on the AP Calculus BC exam); OR
  • Grade of C- or better in Math 4C. 

High school and community college precalculus courses may NOT be used to qualify for Math 20A.

You may not take Math 20A for credit if you already received credit by AP Calculus score of 4 or 5 or transfer credit.

Math 20B/C Calculus for Science and Engineering

Consult the course catalog for a description of these courses and their prerequisites, or see the AP Calculus exam prerequisites.

Math Requirements