CLEP Exam: How to Get College Credit & Graduate Faster

CLEP Exam Offerings:


CLEP, which may sound more like a Strep test than a college credit test, actually stands for College Level Examination Program. The CLEP “is a group of standardized tests created and administered by the College Board.[1] These tests assess college-level knowledge in thirty-six subject areas and provide a mechanism for earning college credits without taking college courses. They are administered at more than 1,700 sites (colleges, universities, and military installations) across the United States.” This means that a college or university testing center near you probably offers the exam.
A CLEP exam can offer college credit at a fraction of the cost than traditional classes for subjects that students may already be experts in! Total out of pocket costs for the CLEP exam is $134. (confirm with the school’s testing center)
The most popular CLEP exams administered for many of the schools include Spanish Language, French Language, and Calculus. Undergraduate students can receive college credit to fulfill their prerequisites towards their degree. Students can take any CLEP exam prior to completing an earned credit through formal course work. Meaning, students must complete their CLEP exam before they complete a course in the same subject. Please review the college or university’s Catalog CLEP policies for a list of subjects, and the scores required to earn college credit (and which classes they could earn credit for).  Also, meet with your counselor to confirm what tests to take to fulfill your prerequisites.
Earning a qualifying score on your CLEP test allows you to earn college credits for the course without having to spend time and money to enroll and complete the class. CLEP testing gives you the chance to receive credits for things you already know such as skills you learned through on-the-job training, internships, or even personal courses of study.

Advantages of taking the CLEP exam:

Here are five advantages of integrating CLEP exams to help you prepare for college.  (http://www.testoutofcollegeclasses.com/clep-exam, 2019)

  • Passing CLEP Exams will Save You Time.
  • Credits Through CLEP Exams will Save You Money.
  • You can Earn College Credits for What You Already Know.
  • You can Take More Classes in Subjects that Matter to You.
  • Study at Your Own Pace.
A recent graduate from Heritage Academy, Mary H, said  “the CLEP helped me get through school faster and it saved me a lot of time and money.”

The CLEP website reiterates these main benefits by sharing,  “The pros of CLEP exams include saving tons of money and time. The first two years of college are largely a repeat of high school. When studying a subject, why not study once and get credit for it?”

“At our local community college, a three-credit course costs between $600 – $700 (and that is much less than at a four-year college or university). A CLEP exam costs around $100 when considering examination and administrative fees. That is an incredible savings! And for kids who don’t particularly love school, CLEP exams are an incentive to study once and be done.”

What are Mr. Herrera’s thoughts on taking the CLEP? “My advice would be: DO IT! By getting credits by exam you are giving yourself a self-awarded scholarship to college.”

Preparing for a CLEP Exam:

Before diving into the process, students should familiarize themselves with the logistics of taking a CLEP exam, including where they can be taken, how the sign-up process works and how they should prepare for exam day.

Where can you take a CLEP exam?

CLEP exams are currently offered at more than 1,800 civilian and military testing centers throughout the United States, and College Board has plans to expand this number in the coming years. To find a test center near you, use College Board’s easily searchable database.

Registration and fees:

Regardless of the subject test taken, all CLEP exams cost $85 and can be paid and registered for via the College Board website. Once registered, examinees must contact their local testing center to arrange a date and time to sit the exam. Aside from the examination fee, most testing centers charge an additional administration fee that can be paid online or in person.

What to bring with you:

When testing day arrives, students must bring:

  • A valid registration ticket for each exam they’ll be taking

  • Any necessary paperwork required by the testing facility

  • A valid and acceptable form of identification

Items that can’t be brought in include:

  • Calculators

  • Keyboards

  • Phones

  • Books

  • Cameras or audio recording devices

  • Food

  • Hats or baggy clothes

  • Any other items that could be used to unlawfully help examinees with the testing materials

The 35 CLEP exams currently offered by College Board are divided into five categories:

  • Composition and literature

  • World languages

  • History and social sciences

  • Science and mathematics

  • Business

Regardless of their chosen areas of interest, CLEP examinees can select from a vast array of topics, including American literature; various levels of French, German or Spanish language; human growth and development; macroeconomics; college algebra; pre-calculus or financial accounting.

“Benefits of CLEP* Exams.” Benefits of CLEP Exams, http://www.testoutofcollegeclasses.com/clep-exam/121/Benefits-of-CLEP-Exams.html.

Blog post submitted by Bryant Herrera, College Relations Advisor for Heritage Academy schools. 

By | 2019-11-14T15:55:06+00:00 November 6th, 2019|Blog|0 Comments

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