Advanced Standing Examinations (ASE)

General Information

  • 18.01, 18.02, 18.03, and 18.06 ASEs are offered four times a year: in August/September before classes begin, end of IAP, final examination weeks of the Fall and Spring terms.
  • 18.03 and 18.06 ASEs both require the completion of extensive homework packets due at the time of the exam. You can only take one in the Summer but may take both in the Fall, IAP, and Spring.
  • You may take an ASE in each subject once and only if you have not been registered for the subject or its equivalent. You can email MAS Staff to withdraw prior to the exam and re-register for another term as long as you have not taken the exam.
  • A passing grade on an ASE confers full credit for the subject. Your letter grade appears on your permanent record but is not incorporated into your term or cumulative GPA.
  • Grades for August/September exams are posted to the Fall record. Grades for IAP exams are posted to the Spring record and do not count toward your IAP/Spring credit load limit.

ASE Dates for Academic Year 2023-2024

  • Fall 2023: All (18.01, 18.02, 18.03 & 18.06) will be available during the week of final exams in December
  • IAP 2024:
    • 18.01 ASE: Tuesday, January 23rd, 9am - 12pm (Online)
    • 18.02 ASE & 18.03 ASE: Tuesday, January 30th, 9am - 12pm (On Campus)
    • 18.06 ASE: Tuesday, January 30th, 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm (On Campus)

For Current Students

The procedure to take the ASE is:

  1. Check the petition deadline on the Academic Calendar
    • Registration for Summer ASE opens in June;
    • Fall & IAP: first day of Fall Term;
    • Spring: first day of Spring term
  2. Fill out the ASE petition form
  3. Obtain advisor’s signature (NOT instructor in charge).
  4. Submit signed petition to Sefanya Hope-Hiennadi () for departmental approval.
    • If you petition for the 18.03 or 18.06 ASE, the compulsory homework will provided at this time
  5. Submit the form to the Registrar’s ( or Room 5-117) before the deadline. Your petition is not complete until it is received by the Registrar's office.

See the Office of the Registrar site for ASE petition deadlines and grading policies.

ASEs in subjects other than 18.01, 18.02, 18.03, and 18.06 are rarely given, and only during fall and spring final exam periods (if at all). To inquire, speak with Theresa Cummings () in the MAS office.

For Incoming First-Year and Transfer Students

All GIR ASE schedules are included in the "first-year packet" sent to you by the Admissions Office and on the The First-Year website.

For 18.03 and/or 18.06, you must contact Sefanya Hope () to obtain the required homework assignment. The information becomes available at the beginning of the summer term.

The 18.01 ASE is divided into two parts. Passing the first part completes an entrance requirement for 18.01A. Passing both parts earns credit for 18.01.

For incoming first-year students, ASE results are recorded as Pass / NoRecord for exams taken during orientation or Fall term and A / B / C / NoRecord for exams taken during IAP or Spring term. If you fail the exam, no record will be kept other than an internal notation that you attempted the exam. For upperclass transfer students, standard letter grades are recorded.

Units for ASEs passed in the orientation and IAP exam periods do not count toward your credit load limit. Units for exams taken at the end of Fall and Spring terms do count toward your credit load limit. This means that, as a first-year student, you most likely cannot take ASEs at the end of the Fall or Spring term because the 12 credits earned would cause you to exceed your credit limit for that term.

Preparing for the ASE

Advanced Standing Exams are intended to give you the chance to demonstrate knowledge you have already acquired, but it is helpful to review and practice in preparation for the test. We recommend that you check out class materials available through MIT's Open CourseWare, where you can find final exams to practice, as well as lectures, homework problems, and more. Another wonderful resource is the on-line class 18.01x (in three parts: 18.01.1x, 18.01.2x, 18.01.3x), available through MITx. See for more information. We also recommend the MITx version of 18.03, for those planning to take that ASE.

For a list of topics click below: