The College Level Examination Program or CLEP can be one of the easier and faster ways of earning your college degree in record time! Many colleges and universities accept CLEP transcripts as proof of learning and will credit your transcripts for similar courses offerd by the university. Not all colleges do this and even those that do, will likely limit how much you can earn toward a degree this way so it pays to check out your college prior to taking a CLEP test. If your college does accept them then CLEP is a sure-fire way to save money and time because you won’t be taking classes for which you already know the material!
The CLEP tests are broken down into two types of tests. First is the general tests and then there are the subject specific tests. While all tests are e
ssentially multiple choice, some do include essay response or a fill in the blank requirement. Some schools require the essay option and others do not. Once again, check the college ahead of time! Nearly every test is about 100 questions and takes about 2 hours to complete.
You can check the CLEP website to find local testing centers or the colleges that administer the exams but if you are active duty military then you should use the base education office to take the test for free and avoid the $75-90 testing fee. Prior to taking a test make sure you review the testing center requirements and that you can do well on the practice test. The CLEP tests have recently made the transition from paper to computer based tests and with a computer based test you can get your answer in just minutes! If you have to take a paper based test it can be several weeks before you get the results. Should you fail the exam you will need to wait at least six months before retaking the test.
As a serious life-long learner I’ve used the CLEP, DANTES and Excelsior exams to earn well over 100 semester hours of college credit. While some people may say that it requires no studying, I strongly recommend reading a book on the subject prior to taking the examination. When I’ve done that my test scores were very high and some distance learning schools are now awarding a grade consistent with the test score and the CLEP passing score is equal to a C and not all colleges take the minimum passing score for credit. My short advice to those using credit by examination: Read the book, take the test, earn the credit!
While there are some companies that sell CLEP test prep kits, stay away from those crooks and only deal with CLEP and your local library where you can get the same information for free!
Lastly, using CLEP and other credit by examination programs is way to accelerate your degree program, save time, money and get that college degree behind you and up on the wall so it will boost your resume.
Once again: Read the book, take the test, earn the credit!
Below you will find the current (July 2009) offering of CLEP examinations as found at the CLEP website at: http://www.collegeboard.com
Social Sciences and History
Composition and Literature
Analyzing and Interpreting Literature
Freshman College Composition
French Language (Levels 1 and 2)
German Language (Levels 1 and 2)
Spanish Language (Levels 1 and 2)
History and Social Sciences
Human Growth and Development
Introduction to Educational Psychology
Principles of Macroeconomics
Principles of Microeconomics
History of the United States I: Early Colonization to 1877
History of the United States II: 1865 to the Present
Western Civilization I: Ancient Near East to 1648
Western Civilization II: 1648 to the Present
Science and Mathematics
Financial Accounting (New in 2007)
Introductory Business Law
Information Systems and Computer Applications
Principles of Management
Principles of Marketing