College Level Examination Program, or CLEP exams, are academic exams developed by the College Board, creators of the SAT. Generally, CLEP exams are 90 minutes long and include multiple-choice and fill-in-the-blank questions, apart from the English Composition with Essay examination. The current fee for a CLEP examination is $65, which is a small price to pay considering the cost of college tuition these days. If you take two science programs, you can save roughly $1,200 in college tuition costs and about $150 in books! Basically, CLEP exams generally adhere to the content provided in entry-level college classes. A CLEP examination may be based on a single term course, a two-semester course, or even a two-year course (foreign ‘languages’, etc.). Based on your college (or upcoming college), you may be provided three, six, or even 12 hours of credit for each CLEP examination.
Nearly 3,000 organizations agree to CLEP exams for school credit. Although the American Council on Education suggests lowest ratings for giving credit, it is the organizations themselves that eventually figure out the lowest ranking for credit to be provided, as well as the amount of credit ranking provided for each CLEP examination.
CLEP Examinations are currently available for the following subjects:
- Foreign Languages
- Social Sciences
Schools, colleges and universities differ in their treatment of CLEP examinations. Review your college’s CLEP policies to find out what examinations you may take, the ratings you must get and any appropriate deadlines/requirements. Remember that some institutions offer substitute credit for life experience without taking a CLEP examination. For example, if you are an entrepreneur, you may be able to get management and accounting credit, depending on your business. If you are a recruiting manager, you might be able to get substitute portfolio credit as well. It will differ by business. Sometimes, you may just be granted optional credit for substitute learning, but either way, you are not wasting time and money!