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Old 6 May 2011, 18:15
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College Credit By Examination

SB approved.

This post is for those who do not know about college credit by examination.

This is a completely legitimate way to earn college units. Over 3,000 university's and colleges accept DANTES and CLEP. It is paramount that YOU ensure that the educational institution you want to attend will accept and grant credit for CLEP and DANTES.

Generally speaking credit by examination can be done through two different testing programs. One is College Level Examination Program (CLEP), and the other is Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES) also known as DSST.

CLEP http://clep.collegeboard.org/ offers a multitude of Lower Division courses. Courses generally cost around 115-125 dollars per test and this includes a registration fee that is set by the testing facility. These tests are Pass/Fail, so there is no need to worry about and A,B,C grading system. Also, almost all of these examinations are computer based so you will know your results right then and there. It is possible to knock out 2 years of college level courses in this manner. Upon completion the results will be sent to the college or university of your choosing.

DANTES/DSST is open to both military and civilians. The major advantage of DANTES over CLEP is DANTES satisfies some Upper Division requirements. Grading system is similar to CLEP but not exactly the same. DANTES cost is about the same as CLEP and is computer based also.

No real need to spend money to study for these examinations there is a lot of free stuf on the net.

Difficulty is subjective. The more prepared you are the better chance you stand of passing.

Some people do study, some people do not. I would strongly encourage studying.

IIRC, both are free for AD military so take advantage of this great opportunity!

Resources:

http://clep.collegeboard.org/
http://www.getcollegecredit.com/
http://www.dantes.doded.mil/dantes_w...tions/DSST.htm
http://www.instantcert.com/ $20 per month.
http://www.free-clep-prep.com/clep-exams.html
http://www.petersons.com/college-search/clep-test.aspx
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Last edited by Expatmedic; 6 May 2011 at 18:34.
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Old 24 May 2011, 22:05
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I recommend instantcert.com. I am using it for my Clep studies. It's pretty decent. My wife is also using it for GED she is from Colombia and needs a GED to try and get into navy. I support anything that gets her nursing degree without me paying haha.
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Old 25 May 2011, 13:20
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This is a great post. I CLEP'd and used Dantes tests to earn a metric shit-ton of credits - when I finally did get into a program, my school accepted about 80% of it, which is $$$ back into my pocket.

Its especially valuable to the AD guys, because the base education offices fund and administer the tests on post.

The only caveat to keep in mind is that all schools limit how much credit they will accept from CLEP/Dantes tests. Its money they're not making, yet granting credit anyway - so manage your expectations accordingly. Its also pertinent to the program you're in. For example, if you're in an accounting/MBA type program, its very unlikely that your school would accept even 1 CLEP related to your concentration. They'll probably be glad to credit your Sociology or Psych101 tests (or electives), but Math/Econ/Acc etc they're gonna want you to buy from THEM as part of your graduation reqs.
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Last edited by sarc88; 25 May 2011 at 13:25.
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Old 25 May 2011, 13:36
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Great thread. Thanks. I am currently trying to get military and LE courses to count as college credits and this may help a lot. I just have upper level courses remaining so I will look into it. THANKS!
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Old 25 May 2011, 16:52
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Same here...great thread. It will be very useful to me.
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Old 25 May 2011, 17:27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sarc88 View Post
This is a great post. I CLEP'd and used Dantes tests to earn a metric shit-ton of credits - when I finally did get into a program, my school accepted about 80% of it, which is $$$ back into my pocket.

Its especially valuable to the AD guys, because the base education offices fund and administer the tests on post.

The only caveat to keep in mind is that all schools limit how much credit they will accept from CLEP/Dantes tests. Its money they're not making, yet granting credit anyway - so manage your expectations accordingly. Its also pertinent to the program you're in. For example, if you're in an accounting/MBA type program, its very unlikely that your school would accept even 1 CLEP related to your concentration. They'll probably be glad to credit your Sociology or Psych101 tests (or electives), but Math/Econ/Acc etc they're gonna want you to buy from THEM as part of your graduation reqs.
My school (Chaminade University of Honolulu) allowed no more than 30 credits by CLEP/DANTES and 30 transferred in, either from other schools or SMART transcript.

For me...

I transferred in 18 credits from LSU's distance program (www.is.lsu.edu; great program), CLEP'd 18 credits, and had 22 credits accepted from my SMART. The rest were all at my home school, either ass in seat or online. Effectively, between my SMART and CLEP, a third of my credits were taken care of without cracking a textbook. Only two of CLEP tests applied to my major, the rest all filled electives.
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Old 26 May 2011, 08:17
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The SMART system should be unpacked, as it meshes very nicely with CLEP/DSST testing.

SMART Link

To summarize, it's a credit analysis program where Navy and Marine Corps schools and training are assigned recommended college credits that are approved by the American Council on Education. These credits are accepted (or rejected) at the discretion of each individual school.

(SMART is for Navy and USMC, not sure what the other branches have in place.)

A Vet registers on the site, and his service records are pulled and analyzed. A few weeks later, a transcript is generated and Vet can log-in and download, or request that a transcript be sent to his school.

For example, Vet may have 6 physical education credits recommended for boot camp, and his college may accept them as lower level free electives.

Say Vet was an E-4 Electricians Mate. He may receive 6 credits for math, 6 for basic electrical theory, 3 for basic business management, etc.

The following grid shows some of the credits I actually received, based on SMART recommendations. (My rating was Interior Communications Electrician.) The different columns indicate whether or not the credits were free electives or specific to my major.

Over all, I believe SMART recommended 60 credits and my school accepted 30.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg credits.jpg (21.0 KB, 393 views)
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Old 5 June 2011, 12:28
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This is excellent. I'm almost at the point where I'm done with the classes I registered for and was going to use the CLEP prep site. Will be doing that after reading about it here. I don't want to waste another couple of months taking all those classes if I can avoid it.
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Old 5 June 2011, 18:05
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Definitely take advantage of CLEP, while you're still serving in the military if you can.

And for anybody that has ETS'd and perpaps didn't get a chance to do an education cycle at your home base, I'm pretty sure that you can still take them through the military if you sign up within 6 months to a year after you get out, can't remember the exact time limit.

What I couldn't take care of down at Ft. Stewart I finished up at Ft. Sheridan after I got home.
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Old 5 June 2011, 19:59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Expatmedic
Courses generally cost around 115-125 dollars per test and this includes a registration fee that is set by the testing facility....DANTES cost is about the same as CLEP and is computer based also.

No real need to spend money....
I have no idea how it is today, but in my time (87-90), CLEPs and DANTES were FREE to AD mil-types. As in, no cost. As in, not a fucking dime. If you guys have to pay for the tests, I'm sure that is still not a horrible thing, but I'd check with your education office on base.

Another thing, I knocked out a full 2 years of credits for my degree without studying once. I never studied for a single exam. I'm NOT an intelligent guy - my wife and friends can support this statement with numerous examples. If you fail the exam, you can retake it in 6 months (I think that was for the DANTES exams). Anyway, my opinion is that if you are well-read, why not simply go in and take the test?

Finally, I got like 3 credits for Navy SCUBA school, for oceanography, or some shit.

Guys, if you don't hit the CLEPs and DANTES and mil school credit exchange, you're nuts....
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Old 5 June 2011, 23:10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SOTB View Post
Guys, if you don't hit the CLEPs and DANTES and mil school credit exchange, you're nuts....
+1 to this. I was one of the guys who waited til I got back to college before I jumped into the whole CLEP thing. I took it because I was trying to knock out80+ credits in 3 semesters to graduate. CLEP exam for Business Law was like $25 and counted towards my BBA degree. Not only that it saved me a CHUNK of $$$ on tuition compared to a 3 credit class at the university and counted exactly the same.

If you're not on CLEP/DANTES you must be independantly wealthy.

Ax
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Old 24 March 2020, 18:40
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Perhaps some folks sitting at home may decide to head back to school. The information in the original post is now dated, please do your own research. Please post in this thread any new found information or information that transcends the OP so that others may benefit.
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Old 25 March 2020, 23:47
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If you have questions, I can check with our transfer folks on what is the latest industry norm.
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Old 28 March 2020, 17:38
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I CLEP'd 27 hours of college in 7 hours of testing- 4 CLEP General Tests and 1 subject test.

Basically my 1st year of college- all colleges in the SOCAD program accept the tests.

Got a shitload of credits from my military training and MOS- including my secondary MOS.

Added with classes I took while in the Academy (5) and eArmyU requirement for 12 credit hours turned into a Bachelor's Degree.

I basically didn't pay for any of it except a couple of books and I still have the 9/11 GI Bill converted from the Montgomery GI bill converted from the OLD GI bill (pre 1977)
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Old 30 March 2020, 21:19
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Concur in all of the above:

CLEP Basic Examinations. These are worth your entire freshman year of college (if you make a high enough score).

The basic idea of the CLEP and DANTES (and other credits by examination only) programs is this:

Some professor nerd designs a test to see if the students have a working knowledge of facts and processes involved in a certain subject that is taught as a course in college. The professor nerd then gives the test to students who actually took the class. Those scores (of the students who actually took the class) are ranked. Then, the test is given to persons who did NOT take the class. The students who did NOT take the class have a simple goal: score equal or above those students who actually took the class.

In other words, what you scored (right/wrong) on the examination is not as important as how you rank when compared to those who DID take the class. While you will get a "raw score" from a CLEP or DANTE's test, that's not important. What your college will look at is your "percentile rank," that is, how many of the MF's who actually TOOK the damn class did you outscore? Each college sets it's own percentile for you to be granted the credit. Some may be as low as 50%ile. That is, if you -- who never took the class -- can outscore half of those who DID take the class, well, you get credit. More likely, the college will expect 70-75%ile. That is, you must outscore 70 or 75 (out of 100) who actually took the class to be awarded credit for the class.

My system was rather straightforward. One week before the test on, say "Humanities" I would go to the post library and check out two or three textbooks on "Humanities." Art, Literature, History, that soft mushy stuff. In other words, I'd "cram" for the exam. I'd take the test, then forget about it. On to the next subject, return the previous textbooks, check out the text subject area books on next weeks test. Cram, test, repeat.

My CLEP scores were high enough for Campbell College to knock out my entire freshman year. Next step:

DANTES Standardized subject examinations. Each one covers -- as the name implies -- one subject. So again, whether it is construction engineering, healthful living (wash your hands and brush your teeth), even basic mechanics (when to use a torque wrench, when to use a box end wrench, how to tighten the screws on a flat plate, that sort of thing) pick a book or two, read up on the subject, and take the test.

Next, look for college credit for service schools you completed (your AIT is a start). Go to the ACE Guide for the Accreditation of Service Schools. My experience was:

12A10 Pioneer Engineer (a basic combat engineer) was worth 3 credit hours in the field of Construction Engineering.
12B40 Combat Engineer Sergeant (the old Combat Engineer NCO "shake and bake") was worth credits for Construction Foreman.
Infantry OCS (the old 23 week program) was worth credits for "Military Leadership, and Physical Fitness).
Special Forces Officer Course was worth credits for Communications Electronics (the old shortwave radios with Morse code, and Basic First Aid).

Ranger, Jumpmaster, Air Assault and Pathfinder were worth zero college credits "due to the military nature of the courses."

Finally, see what waivers, equivalencies, and constructive credits your college or university will give you. Military personnel can often get the PT requirement waived. Some colleges give "freebie" credits just for being on active duty as in "Military Science in lieu of ROTC, two credit hours for each full year of active duty, not to exceed 12 hours for six years of active duty."

(Yeah, I nailed that one , too).

Don't be surprised to discover that after scraping and grubbing up tests, schools, waivers, and implied credits ... you are a sophomore or even a high ranking junior, ready to finish up a senior year and graduate.

But remember, no matter how many credits you can scrape up (and you will need 128 - 130 to get a degree) you can still run up against two big hurdles:

1 - Every college or university will want you to come set foot on their campus and establish "residency" at their institution before they will give you a degree. Typically, that's one year.

2 - Just racking up 128-130 credit hours may or may not lead to a degree. Some colleges do award a "degree of General Studies" and that means, yes, the student just collected a basket full of credits in many subjects. More likely, and of more importance if you have goals onward for law, MBA, MD, etc. is making sure you have the right credits in the right "bundles" to declare a "major" and have your degree actually recite, for example: a "Bachelor of Science in Government."
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Old 30 March 2020, 21:20
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There's universities that don't require you to ever set foot on campus.
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Old 31 March 2020, 20:10
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I reckon so. . .
 
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Conversely there are institutions that do not accept or even acknowledge CLEP.
My first college venture in NC was a surprise. Just checked their website, CLEP and CLEP exams didn't return any results at all.
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Old 1 April 2020, 21:45
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Litepath, who was that?
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Old 1 April 2020, 22:53
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I reckon so. . .
 
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Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro NC.
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Old 2 April 2020, 06:19
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Thomas Edison State University will take all CLEP credits plus your mil equivalents.
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