Do you know someone who will be starting college soon? Is your son or daughter a recent high school graduate who placed into introductory courses in college? Do you have a friend missing a few credit hours who will be returning to college finishing their degree? Maybe, you or your spouse just needs a few professional development hours for your current career.
Boy, do I have good news for you!
The College Level Examination Program (CLEP) is an exam sponsored by the College Board, also known for sponsoring the SAT and Advance Placement (AP) exams. CLEP exams provide an opportunity to earn college credit for material you may already know. This awesome exam program has been saving college students time and money for over 50 years. In fact, 34 exams are accepted for credit at over 2,900 colleges and universities!
First thing, check if CLEP credit is accepted at the college or university you, or your “person”, are planning to attend. You can usually go to their main web page and search “CLEP testing” or “CLEP test policy” and it should bring up exactly which exams are accepted to potentially earn college credit. It should show the score necessary to earn credit and the undergraduate course it will replace in the likely event you earn the required score. Institutions award 3-12 hours college credit per subject, depending on the CLEP exam passed. Most universities require a score of 50 to pass a CLEP exam; the equivalent of earning a “C” in the instructed course, but they do vary. If professional development credit is needed, check to see if CLEP testing is an option.
There is a non-profit organization who will not only pay for the CLEP test, but also prepare you to take the exam and potentially pass it. You could potentially accomplish “Freshman Year for Free” or even just a few credits FREE…saving you both time and money.
This organization is Modern States! All the information about the “Freshman Year for Free” program can be found at https://modernstates.org/freshman-year-free/ . You will build a profile with Modern States then spend approximately 24 hours collectively going through videos, coursework and quizzes until the free program is completed. Next, you will enter your information on a form stating you have finished the coursework at https://modernstates.org/clep-voucher-request/. In a week or less, Modern States will send you a CLEP Voucher, which you will use to buy your exam on https://clep.collegeboard.org/.
After you have purchased the exam, schedule a test center seat to take your test with a certified proctor. You can find a testing center at https://ncta.memberclicks.net/find-a-cctc-participant. But, if you are in the Louisville, Kentucky or Southern Indiana area, I would hope you would come see us at the University of Louisville, Testing Services. You will pay the testing fee up front ($20-$60) depending on the location you chose. But…once you finish your CLEP test you can submit your receipt to Modern States at https://modernstates.org/test-center-reimbursement/ and will receive a refund for your testing center fee. This will take approximately 8-10 weeks to process.
- You have checked the institution you will be applying to for CLEP testing options and chosen the exams you wish to take.
- You have registered for an account with Modern States & used their free program to study. Complete the Voucher Request for on their site.
- You have purchased the ($89) exam from College Board or used a Modern States Voucher to test for FREE.
- You have registered for an appointment date and time at the most convenient test center.
- You are NOW ready to test…here are a few tips you should know!
Most of the 34 CLEP subjects are computer based, 90 minute, multiple choice exams. A few exams have essays (some optional and some not) and the foreign language exams have a listening component. The exams are proctored by a trained and certified Testing Center Administrator. The TCA will check your valid photo id and admission ticket, ask you to store your belongings in a secure location, check you into the system and proctor the exam. At the end of the exam, unless you are taking an essay, you will receive a preliminary score report. This report will be sent directly to the institution you entered in your College Board account as an official score.
I can’t speak for all Testing Services’ who offer CLEP, but at the University of Louisville, we celebrate when our candidates have a successful score report. We have a “Wall of Fame” where we post photos of our candidates who have earned college credit & what earning this credit has done for their future!
Hopefully, this information will be of value to you and yours, saving both TIME and MONEY!!! If you or your “person” will be beginning college soon, please do yourself a favor and check into the CLEP testing program. Coming to the University of Louisville, Testing Services’ could also land you on our “CLEP Wall of Fame” too!!! Wouldn’t that be awesome?!