College can be tough, especially when you’re balancing work, family, and other commitments. It’s no wonder many students struggle to graduate on time. But what if I told you there was a way to earn college credit faster, without sacrificing quality? That’s where Clep exams come in. In this blog post, we’ll explore what Clep exams are, how they work, and why they might be a good option for you.
How Clep Exams Can Help You Graduate Faster
First things first, what are Clep exams? Clep stands for College-Level Examination Program, which is a series of standardized tests that allow you to earn college credit for knowledge you’ve already acquired. Each test covers material typically taught in a full college course, and passing scores can earn you anywhere from 3-12 credits. There are 33 Clep exams available in a variety of subjects—from history and literature to calculus and psychology. These exams are administered by the College Board and can be taken at thousands of testing centers across the country.
So, how do Clep exams work? The first step is to find out if your college or university accepts them for credit. Most schools do, but it’s always a good idea to double-check with your academic advisor. Once you’ve determined which exams you need, you’ll need to study up and register for a testing appointment. The cost of each exam is $89, and you’ll need to pay an additional testing center fee (usually around $20-30). On test day, you’ll have 90-120 minutes to complete each exam, and passing scores typically range from 50-60%.
Now, you might be wondering why you should consider taking a Clep exam. Besides the obvious benefit of earning college credit faster, there are plenty of reasons to consider these exams. First of all, they’re flexible. You can take them on your own schedule, without having to fit into a traditional class schedule. That means you can study and prepare on your own time, and take the exam when you feel ready. Additionally, Clep exams are typically less expensive than taking a full college course, and they can save you a lot of time and money in the long run.
But, there are a few things to keep in mind before signing up for a Clep exam. First of all, not all exams are created equal. Some are more difficult than others, and some might require more time and preparation. It’s important to do your research and make sure you’re comfortable with the material before registering for an exam. Additionally, not all schools accept all Clep exams for credit. Make sure you check with your school to determine which exams are applicable to your degree program.
Overall, Clep exams can be a great option for students looking to earn college credit faster and more affordably. They’re flexible, convenient, and can save you both time and money. However, it’s important to do your research and make sure it’s the right choice for you. Talk to your academic advisor and take some practice exams to get a feel for the material. With a little preparation and hard work, you can earn college credit on your own terms.
Using CLEP Exams to Earn College Credit
CLEP exams are offered at more than 2,000 test centers nationwide and by home testing with a proctor. Military personnel take the tests for free and receive free study guides as part of their educational benefits.
Colleges award credit for passing CLEP exam scores. That can help your student graduate on time, and save money on introductory classes.
If your teen is considering CLEP exams to earn college credit, the first step is to check with the university to which they plan on transferring to ensure that CLEP credits are accepted. Each college has its own policies about which tests it will accept and the minimum scores required to earn credit for those tests. The College Board also offers a list of colleges that accept CLEP credit that you can search by name.
The next step is to research the CLEP exams available and choose which ones your teen wants to take. They should consider which subjects they are interested in and have the strongest knowledge of. A standardized CLEP test measures your teen’s overall understanding of a subject, not just what they learned in a particular class. For this reason, it is important for your teen to choose an exam they are confident they can pass the first time around, rather than taking a test and then studying intensively before sitting for it again.
You will also want to look at the minimum scores for each CLEP exam, as well as whether or not your teen’s chosen college will allow them to apply them toward elective or core courses. If a student passes a CLEP test, they will typically receive three credits that you can count towards their degree. This is a huge savings in tuition and will allow your teen to skip required courses that they may not enjoy or need to complete to earn their degree.
Once your teen has chosen the exams they wish to take, they can go to the official College Board website and register for them online. They will need to provide their name, address, phone number and email address and agree to the College Board’s terms and conditions. Next they will need to find a testing center, which are usually located on university campuses or on military bases.
Students should sign up for a test date that is convenient and gives them plenty of time to study for it. It is best to only schedule a CLEP test for a date that they can keep, as there is a 90-day waiting period before a student can retake a test.
Planning Your Coursework
Students should start planning how they’ll use CLEP exams as part of their degree strategy before they take any tests. They should consult their academic advisor to ensure that the exams they choose will satisfy class requirements, and they should research the College Board’s website to find out which exams are accepted at their school and what score is required for credit. They should also check with their school to make sure that CLEP credits will be accepted, as some schools are more liberal than others about accepting credit by exam.
Because CLEP exams are meant to test pre-existing knowledge, it’s important that students pursue only those subjects they feel comfortable with and can confidently answer questions about. Studying intensively for several weeks prior to a test date can be an effective way of building confidence, but the point of taking the exam is to demonstrate proficiency in a subject.
Since some CLEP exams have more than multiple-choice questions, it’s important to research the test structure before deciding whether to take it. For example, some World Language CLEP exams have fill-in-the-blank or essay questions in addition to multiple-choice; History CLEPs might include short essay questions; and math CLEPs often feature problems that require test-takers to create charts or histograms as well as answer multiple-choice questions.
It’s also important for students to consider how they’ll pay for CLEP exams, which can cost up to $89 each, and the larger sums they’ll need to spend on university courses. For those with military benefits, the College Board offers a list of fully-funded CLEP testing centers that will waive all fees, including administrative fees. Some colleges also serve as CLEP testing centers, and some high schools are now offering the service.
Another option is to get a CLEP Official Study Guide, which costs $25 and includes several practice questions for each exam, or Individual Exam Guides, which are available for some exams. Other resources for studying for CLEP exams can be found at sites such as Modern States, a nonprofit education alliance dedicated to college access, which offers free CLEP study guides and practice tests. Many libraries also carry CLEP study materials; check with your local library for availability.
Taking the Tests
CLEP exams allow degree seekers to earn college credit for what they already know. The exams cover topics that typically are taught in introductory college courses and range from history to literature to science to math. Students can register for the exams online and find a test center near them. Exam fees vary. Several states provide free or reduced-fee testing for low-income students, and the military provides free testing for those who meet certain eligibility requirements.
Before taking any CLEP exam, consult the official College Board website to ensure that your intended university accepts credits from passing scores. Many universities do, but some have their own rules about how many credits will transfer or whether certain types of CLEP tests will count toward a degree.
Once you’ve made sure your intended institution will accept your CLEP score, take some time to plan how you will study for the tests and choose which ones you’ll take first. Jarman suggests starting with a few of the most difficult exams and working up to the easier ones as you become more confident in your abilities. She also advises students to purchase the official CLEP study guides, which are available on the College Board website for $25 or less. The study guides provide an overview of the exam content and include practice tests.
On the day of the exam, make sure you arrive at the test center 10 minutes early to check in and present a government-issued ID. Students may not bring food, books or papers into the testing room, and they must turn off their cell phones. Pencils and scratch paper will be provided, but calculators are not allowed. Students who need special accommodations due to a disability should contact their preferred test center in advance to discuss the options.
After the exam, expect to receive your score report within about two weeks. Most CLEP exams offer between three and 12 credits for a passing score, though some tests will net zero credits. The specific number of credits you receive will depend on the policies of your intended university, and you should be aware that your CLEP score will not be included in your final GPA.
The most important thing to remember about taking CLEP exams is that passing them counts as college credit. Your school determines how many credits will be awarded for each exam, based on the minimum passing score and the number of course hours required by your institution. Students should contact their school to learn which exams are accepted, how much credit they will earn and which courses these credits can replace.
Aside from freeing up time and money, CLEP tests can also make it easier for students to meet degree requirements. For example, a student with a strong background in math can test out of several college level math classes, which will allow them to focus on courses in their major. In some cases, this can cut the amount of time needed to graduate from school by a semester or more.
However, it is important to note that not all CLEP tests are created equal. Some are more difficult than others, and you will need to spend the necessary time studying for them in order to succeed. Students should consult their academic advisor or the College Board website for a list of recommended study guides for each exam. In addition, they should also familiarize themselves with the content of the exams by reviewing the ‘At-a-Glance’ sheet for each test, and try the sample questions provided for each.
For those who don’t have the time to study on their own, a number of organizations offer CLEP preparation courses or vouchers for the exam fees. One of the most popular is Modern States, a nonprofit education alliance that provides the opportunity for free college credit as part of its ‘Freshman Year for Free’ program. This program is particularly popular among military service members, says Beran.
Students should also remember that CLEP credits aren’t automatically applied to their transcripts. They must be explicitly transferred by the student to their school in order for the credit to appear. This is done by selecting the institution where they want the credit to be sent during the CLEP registration process or at the time of the test.