Skip Navigation

Intertidal Zone, Southern California (Chris Willett Lab)

Increase font size
Decrease font size

BIOL 101 and 101L/102L Placement Test

General Information

The BIOL 101 & 101L/102L Placement Test is given only twice a year – before classes start in the Fall semester and the Spring semester.  You must take the exam at the scheduled day/place/time.

The Spring 2019 BIOL 101 & 101L/102L Placement test will be given Tuesday, January 7, 2020 from 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM in Coker 201.

The Fall 2019 BIOL 101 & 101L/102L Placement test will be given Monday, August 19, 2019 from 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM in Coker 201.

You must register to take the exam:

You can register for the exam up until one hour before the exam.

First year students (students starting the fall semester of the current year) may take the placement exam and if they pass will receive BE (By Exam) credit.  The student will get 3 hours credit for BIOL 101 and 1 hour credit for BIOL 101L or 102L (102L counts the same as 101L) on their transcript.  Such BE credit can be used to fulfill the BIOL 101 & 101L/102L  (102L counts the same as 101L) prerequisite and the General Education PL/PX and CI requirements.

Non- first year students and transfer students may take the placement exam and if they pass will earn PL (Placement), credit which shows up as zero credit hours on their transcript.  Such PL credit can be used to fulfill the BIOL 101 & 101L/102L  prerequisite (102L counts the same as 101L) and the General Education PL/PX and CI requirements.

There is no separate placement test for the lab only.  Please note that BIOL 102L can be taken in place of BIOL 101L.

If you were enrolled in BIOL 101/101L/102L and withdrew and got a grade of W, you CAN take the placement test.

You are NOT eligible to take the exam if you have completed and received a regular letter grade (not counting a grade of W) for BIOL 101 and/or BIOL 101L/102L, if you have transfer credit for BIOL 101/101L, and you cannot take the test a second time.

If you have earned AP credit in high school of 3 or higher, you will already place out of BIOL 101 & 101L/102L.  You will NOT need to take our Biology Placement test.

If you decide to not come to the exam, after you have registered, no need to cancel. You are still eligible to come to a future placement exam, as long as you still qualify to take it.

About the Biology Placement Test

You must register before the exam –

Please bring your UNC One Card as proof of identification.

This test is designed for people who have had two years of high school biology and probably do not belong in our Introductory Biology (BIOL 101 & 101L/102L) course and lab.

The exam is comprehensive and covers concepts that would be found in any introductory biology textbook.  A non-majors textbook, such as Campbell’s Concepts and Connections (any edition) would be useful to study from.  The topics covered include cell biology, genetics, evolution, diversity, plant and animal physiology, and ecology.

The exam will be all multiple choice and approximately 50 questions.  The exam is scheduled for 2 hours –  you’ll have plenty of time to complete the exam.

If you are currently registered in BIOL 101 and/or 101L/102L and you plan to drop either of them, you should do so immediately upon being notified via email of your passing score.  You may not drop after the last day to drop a course, even if you have placement credit.

If you require special accommodations for the BIOL 101 & 101L/102L placement exam, please contact Accessibility Resources & Services at or visit their website: for more information.

How to check and interpret your score

To check your scores, please go here:

70 and above is a strong pass.

65-70 is a low pass and you should choose your next biology course carefully.

60-64  is a very low pass. If you plan to major in Biology, we suggest that you meet with our Biology Advisor, Dr Shemer ( to discuss what future biology courses you should take.

After the exam is scored, students will receive an email from Exam Scanning that will give instructions on retrieving their score.  Students can also check directly at  Nothing else is required on your part.  The BIOL 101 & 101L/102L placement test results will be sent to the Registrar’s Office and your BE/PL credit will be evaluated by the Degree Audit staff to ensure that there are no duplicate credits (BE, PL, transfer, or enrollment). Results should be posted to your transcript by November 30 in the fall semester and by March 31 in the spring semester.  Please check your transcript after these dates to see that you got the proper credit.  Please notify Summer Montgomery ( if there is an error.

If you have any questions regarding the test, please contact Dr. Kelly Hogan:

(Updated January 9, 2019)