Advanced Standing Exam

Advanced Standing Exam

With a passing grade on the Advanced Standing Exam (ASE), you will receive credit for 7.012 Introductory Biology and will fulfill the Biology GIR. The ASE is offered twice each year: once during Orientation in the fall and once on Registration Day of the spring semester.

Most students choose to take the ASE during their first year, however, you may petition to take the ASE after your first year if you have never registered for or attended a 7.01x class. A student who has failed an ASE may not retake the same exam, but should register for the subject in a subsequent term.

Receiving credit

First year students

If you take the ASE on fall Registration Day and receive a grade of C or better, you will receive the grade P for 7.012. This grade will be posted to your fall term record and will appear on your transcript. If you receive a grade of D or F on the exam, no record will be kept of your non-passing performance.

If you take the ASE on spring Registration Day and receive a grade of C or better, you will receive a letter grade (A, B, or C) that will be posted to your spring term record and appear on your transcript. A non-passing D or F grade will appear on your internal record but not on your transcript.

Returning students

Returning students must submit a signed petition to the Registrar’s office requesting permission to take the ASE at least three weeks before the exam date. A grade of A through F will be recorded and will appear on your transcript but will not be included in the calculation of your term or cumulative GPA.

Transfer students

Transfer students who did not take Introductory Biology at their previous university and who wish to take the ASE may do so. If you choose to take the ASE during orientation you do not need to petition. A petition will be required to take the ASE after your first semester at MIT. A grade of A through F will be recorded and will appear on your transcript but will not be included in the calculation of your term or cumulative GPA.

Transfer students who have taken Biology courses at their previous university can seek transfer credit . You may be required to pass the GIR Validation Exam in order to receive Bio GIR credit. Learn More

Registering for the ASE

All students are required to register for the ASE in advance using the online form.

Exam Date and Time Deadline
September 1, 2017, 8 – 11 a.m. Register by August 18, 2017, 5 p.m.
February 5, 2018, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. First Years: Register by January 24, 2018, 5 p.m.
Upperclassmen*: Register by November 22, 2017, 5 p.m.
August 31, 2018, 8  – 11 a.m. First Years: Register by August 17, 2017, 5 p.m.
Upperclassmen*: TBD

* By petition only

Exam content

The content of the exam is largely focused on core material covered in all 7.01X classes including:

Past exams have also included the following special topics:

  • Immunology
  • Neurobiology
  • Cancer biology
  • Stem cells and cloning
  • Molecular evolution

Study materials

Recommended study materials, problem sets, and past exams are available online:

Additional information

You can find additional information about the ASE on the Registrar’s website and on the First Year website. If you have questions or concerns, contact bioadvance@mit.edu.