Exemption Exam

Physical Science Challenge/Exemption exam policy

Policy for all students

It is possible to satisfy the university physical science requirement by taking and passing an exemption/challenge exam. You may only challenge a given class ONCE. The exam is only offered in the testing center beginning the fourth day of each semester/term and you must complete it before the Add/Drop deadline. See the testing center web site for their hours since they vary the first few weeks.

  1. You do not need to request this test in advance. Simply go to the testing center during the first week of any semester or term and ask for the test.
  2. You can see your scores on the "my scores" tab of the testing center web page, https://testing.byu.edu. Do not use the app or "my tests" tab. You must receive a minimum score of 60% to receive graded credit (challenge credit) for the class and a minimum grade of 75% to be exempt from the physical science requirement.
  3. Exemptions are posted automatically. If your grade is higher than 75% and you do not want graded credit, you do not need to do anything to have the exemption posted.
  4. If you have a 60% or better and want graded challenge credit, then you fill out the online challenge exam forms. Submitting the form triggers the $20 challenge charge to your account. You should only do this AFTER you have seen your score and decided you want it posted.
    • The exact letter grade is determined by the scale given in the grading section of the syllabus. Any score below 60% is not considered a passing grade on the challenge exam, and you must take the class to receive credit.
  5. You must take this test before the add/drop deadline for the semester so you can drop(or add) the class if you pass (or fail) the test. You may also need to add a different class to replace the dropped PS100 class if you need to maintain a certain number of credits.
  6. The exemption exam for this course is the equivalent of a final exam from the regular day sections. It is comprehensive and consists of ~100 multiple-choice questions on physics, chemistry, astronomy and geology.

Current PS100 Students

Taking the Challenge/Exemption Exam will not hurt your grade if you are enrolled in the class. If you are enrolled in one of the campus day sections and do well on the Exemption Exam, you have several different options depending on your grade on the exam. (SLC and evening students will need to discuss options with their instructor.)





If you are enrolled in the class you can stay enrolled and do nothing. Your letter grade on the exemption exam will be used as your grade in the class.


If you are enrolled in the class, you can stay enrolled and take the final during the final exam period to try to improve on your score. Your grade in the class will be the higher of the two grades.


If you are enrolled in the class, you can stay enrolled and take the class, completing all assignments and tests. Your grade in the class will be the highest of 3 grades: your grade on the exemption exam, your grade on the final, or your grade on all completed work including the final.


If you are enrolled in the class you can drop the class and fill out the online challenge credit form. You will be charged the fee to have the appropriate letter grade posted on your transcript. You will receive a grade and GE credit without staying enrolled in the class and paying tuition for it. However, credit received in this manner does not count for the purposes of financial aid, scholarships, or full-time status because it is not associated with any specific semester or term.



If you are enrolled in the class you can drop the class. Your name will automatically show up on a memo saying you don't need to take the class. The requirement will show up as fulfilled on your progress report without having the grade posted or receiving the credits. You are exempt from the requirement, and don't need to take the class. Do not pay the challenge fee or fill out the online form to have the credit and grade posted; waiving the requirement does not require your signature. (The option of having the grade posted and getting credit is still opened to you. See 4. above.) YOU MUST DROP THE CLASS IF YOU DO NOT WANT THE GRADE POSTED.