CLEP Your Way to a College Degree
Did you know that it is possible to earn college credits without taking a specific course? The College-Level Examination Program or CLEP can help you receive college credit for what you already know, saving you the cost of a college course. CLEP is managed by the College Board, the same organization that has brought to you the SAT — the most widely used college admission test. Its CLEP program also involves testing, providing a way for you to possibly finish college faster and for less money.
Read on for some tips on how to apply CLEP:
1. Check with your school. Most schools accept CLEP credits, but some do not. Your college’s Registrar office can provide guidance, information that should also be listed in your school catalog or website.
2. Find out what is covered. The College Board offers 33 tests in five subject areas. Review what exams are offered, typically covering classes you would take during the first two years of college. Each exam is approximately 90 minutes long with the lone exception for College Composition which is 120 minutes. Exams typically offer multi-choice questions, while College Composition and some other exams include questions and essays.
3. Arrange for a CLEP test. CLEP testing centers are located across the country with international testing centers too. Most are held at nearby colleges and universities, making it convenient for you to take your test. Sign up with a local test center to take your exam. You’ll need to fill out a registration form and include a fee.
4. Study for your CLEP test. The College Board offers official CLEP study materials to help you for prepare for your exam. These materials are comprised of official practice questions for all 33 CLEP exams, study guides and tips on how to prepare for your exam. You can also purchase a CLEP Exam Guide for a specific subject.
5. Take your CLEP exam. Get ample rest the night before your test, arising early enough to have your breakfast. Head to the exam center with time to spare and follow the instructions given by the proctor. Pace yourself, completing each question or section within the allotted time.
You can take as many CLEP exams as allowed by your school. Keep in mind that these exams measure proficiency, therefore some of the materials may be beyond your area of expertise. Typically, you’ll receive your test score immediately following your exam. College Composition tests take longer to complete; you’ll receive your score within three to four weeks. You can have your scores sent to your college at no extra cost.
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