Too many students are targeted on the classes they need to take. English, Psychology, Chemistry, Accounting etc. It’s simple to see why. Choose a college course book and you will see that degree programs are set out as series of classes to take. Successfully pass them all and you graduate with the degree you desired. Yet, this is actually a superficial way to look at higher education. As it turns out, credits are the real foundations of degrees, not classes.
Take a closer look at your college’s course book. What you will see is that you actually need a certain variety of credits to graduate, usually 60 for an associate degree and 120 for a bachelor’s. This is a key understanding, because once you move your focus from classes to credit, you can begin researching methods to buy them for less. The costly classes your university provides are just one way of getting those credits, even though most learners thoughtlessly believe it’s the only way.
In reality, there are three methods to generate higher education credit:
- Classes at four year public colleges/private universities
- Classes at community colleges
- Credit by examination
Most students are acquainted with the first two choices. But hardly anyone knows about credit by examination and even less understand its full potential. Credit by examination represents college-level subject assessments like CLEP and DSST. With this strategy, you take a large test covering an entire subject (say, English) rather than a semester-long course. Successfully pass the examination and you get credit just as if you had taken the class. What this implies is that you can possibly cut lots of money off the price of graduating by replacing as many of these examinations for classes as your college will allow. Unfortunately, many colleges and universities have tight “residency requirements” restricting how many attributes you can get this way.
A college is commonly viewed as a financial commitment into your future. Invest your cash into college, and your return is a degree and hopefully a well-paying job. Testing out, or credit by examination, gets you the same return for a smaller financial commitment of both cash and time. Simply put, it’s a faster, more affordable way to generate college credit by passing one standardized evaluation per course. So, here are some things you need to know about credit by examination.
You can get college credit on your schedule without sitting in a classroom – Credit by examination, or testing out of college programs, is a method that focuses on the elements of college that are valued most, gaining the college credits you need while saving cash. Separate studying and testing out of a course allow you to structure the studying process into your current life schedule, no matter what your life routine may be.
Passing one standardized evaluation can give you up to 12 college credits – A passing score on a standardized evaluation indicates that you have the same level of information as someone who took the same topic in a traditional class room. Think of it as skipping right to the final exam in an excellent course and having your entire grade based on that test. The number of credits earned depends on the evaluation topic and the university or college you plan to transfer it into.
Testing out can save you money – By using your knowledge, you can reduce costs on tuition, transportation costs and child care and save lots of money along the way.
Testing out is not just for the army anymore – For many years, the army has used independent studying to allow army personnel the flexibility to independently learn and then test out of college programs, as well as army specific programs. Today, there are many people, army and non-military alike, who get a four-year degree using nothing but independent studying to aid in testing out of programs. Their passing grades are transferred to a school of their choice that accepts the passing standardized evaluation scores and the college issues them credit toward a degree.
Getting a full load of courses during college means late-night stuffing, regular assessments and lots of content to cover. But it can also mean studying in an advanced, less curriculum-driven atmosphere, while experiencing a break from the extracurricular actions that take over the schedule in high school. Scholars who are lucky enough to not have to work, have time each day to research and slack off, since their complete class time is about 15 hours less each week than that of a higher school student. But a good amount of kids are now using up to 10 advanced placement courses during their junior and senior years, balancing three periods of sports, group service, flute training, driving training and applying to college. School directors say advanced placement courses generally require 30 to 60 minutes of preparation per class per evening. And no high school student’s day begins with an 11 am class.
Why are kids placing themselves through this? And why do parents allow and even require this? There are a lot of explanations for your high school student to take advanced placement courses. Learners can generate college credit and may be able to save money by completing college a term or two early. Learners are also able to take electives previously in college, enabling them to try out new subject matter or even move on to more complex courses in their major more quickly. But not every college allows AP credits. And by the time your child finds out where she is going to college, she is mostly done taking courses.
My buddy who works as a college consultant for high school students says students really need to know themselves before signing up for several AP courses. If you think you can manage work and stress, staying up late and if the subject is an area in which you succeed, go for it. But there are other ways to help you take a stand out: Get into and win an essay competition, for example. But, she says, if a scholar’s objective is to get into an Ivy League university, she motivates him or her to take more APs, especially in a selected area, since the scholar’s “weighted” Grade Point Average will be higher than if he would have taken non-AP classes.
The common college student is no longer the 18- to 24-year-olds that completed secondary school and instantly went on to college. The present scholars are a different lot and include army veterans, stay-at-home moms, business men and others. Those that are not part of the young set are regarded “non-traditional students” or individuals that generally attend sessions on a part-time basis. Going to greater education part-time is often the only option for returning students. The procedure can take the better part of a decade to finish, placing stress on weddings, family members and businesses along the way.
Here is how you can speed up the college completion process:
1. Check out CLEP. The College Level Examination Program (CLEP) may make it possible for learners to take examinations to confirm expertise in certain subjects. If accepted by a college, College Level Examination Program examinations can help learners quickly obtain credits that will count toward graduating. Before you take a CLEP examination, you need to find out your college’s CLEP plan.
2. Prior classes may transfer. If you have been out of college for years, credits you have taken previously may still be transferrable. There are deadlines and credit limits that colleges and universities allow, but that “Modern European History” or “Health Science Foundations” programs you took decades ago may depend toward your present degree.
3. Remain on target. One of the annoying things that scholars must deal with are those programs that cannot count toward their degree. Typically, this happens when learners change degrees, perhaps shifting from Chemistry to Business Management. Some programs may count as electives while others will not. Clearly, you need to know what degree you want to engage in and stay on track at all times.
4. Take web based programs. Even if you attend college in person, you may be able to complement your programs by taking classes on the web too. On the internet programs generally allow learners to work at their own rate, allowing them to obtain credit as they finish each course.
5. Get the good grades. No matter your pace of study, you need to get high grades in every class. That meaning of “good” is generally a “B” or better. Getting at least a “C” can be appropriate too, but if you get a “D” grade, you may not be able to transfer that course to another school if you have to.
The number of Sioux Falls learners getting advanced placement courses decreased almost 8% last school year over the year before, partially because of an overall decrease in secondary school registration, authorities said. Slightly more than 2,000 learners registered in advanced placement courses in the Sioux Falls School District last school year, down about 170 learners from the year before. The figures were provided to the Sioux Falls School Board. Officials said the figures drop in range with the pattern the district has been seeing over the years and are not a big issue. “The comfort is, this year’s performance decreased in range with the long run,” Superintendent Pam Homan said. Board member Todd Thoelke said he would like to see more children using the programs.
“It’s a great program and I know the dedication from learners is remarkable. It gives them a glance inside the world of higher education,” he said. “It also gives them a step up for when that day comes.” Students are provided a wide range of different advanced placement courses, with the program determined by the company College Board, covering composition, history, geography, chemistry and Spanish, among others. Some classes are provided during the school day in a class room, but others are provided online, which can help learners who cannot fit a particular class into their schedule.
At the end of the course, learners have the choice to take an AP examination. Test results are reported on a range of 1-5 and learners must accomplish a grade of 3 or greater in order for the course to be regarded for college credit. Last school year, 70% of Sioux Falls learners who took an AP examination passed. The national passing rate is 61%. There is benefit both for learners to take the examination and educational institutions to motivate their learners to do so, said Laura Raeder, high school curriculum coordinator for the school district. Students can take the AP examination at a price of $87, generally less than the price of a college credit. The district subsidizes the price for learners who have financial need but are not eligible for support through other means.
The recent Federal Fund Sequester has resulted in price range deductions across many government-run programs. And for a while, it was threatening college tuition assistance for active military members and veterans. Here’s what you need to know:
1. Early in April, both the Army and Marine Corps revoked their Tuition Assistance (TA) programs, preventing active-duty military employees from submitting new requests for assistance. The Air Force then followed suit, suspending their own assistance. The Navy considered the revocation, but has not as of yet acted.
2. Only two weeks later, Congress elected to require military branches to provide college tuition assistance to all active-duty employees, thus preserving the system for those serving in the U.S. Air Force, Army and Marine Corps. The restoration of Tuition Assistance for active-duty members is a sign of the military’s commitment to education and improving minds among their ranks.
3. While both houses of Congress decided to reinstate Tuition Assistance across the board, no funds have been set aside to back up the move, so the three military branches that initially revoked assistance will have to figure out ways to implement sequestration price range deductions without touching Tuition Assistance.
The Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES), an organization dedicated to supporting military and veteran education, never stopped funding DSST examinations as an alternative to generate college credit. Their program remained a choice for soldiers looking for education cost assistance and quickly receive a degree.
Students in the military, as well as their partners, have the choice to generate credits up to 38 subjects through the DSST credit by exam program. And because this college credit opportunity is conveniently located at more than 500 military installations across the nation, thousands of military employees have already experienced the power of DSST tests. Over 1,900 higher-education institutions grant higher education credit to those who take and pass their credit by exam programs, helping to drive those who fight for our nation toward their degree, learning and career goals.