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How to Get College Credit Without Taking the Class

Let’s pretend there’s a woman in her 20s named Andrea. Andrea just finished her active tour of duty with the United States Navy. She has been away from her family for months at a time, and is looking forward to spending some quality time with them. But she also wants to get a college degree. With her active duty experience, she can get those college credits without setting foot in a classroom. This will give her more precious time with her family. People like Andrea have options when it comes to using their professional experience to earn college credit.

One way on how to get college credit without taking the class is the Credit-By-Examination alternative. This is when you pay a significant fraction of the cost of taking the class to take college-level tests instead. There are several types of exams

  1. College Level Exam Program (CLEP)

This is the most common examination program. It is great for people who prefer independent study and for those who are already in the workforce. It consists of 33 exams that are each focused on a single subject, and 5 exams that cover the general college curriculum – college mathematics, social sciences, natural sciences. humanities and English composition. This type of examination program can replace a year of college. You can get up to 30 college credits just for completely the five general exams. This means you can get to higher-level classes faster. The best part is that each exam only costs $80. When you consider how much tuition can cost per semester – that is quite a bargain. Those 30 credits will only cost you a total of $400, whereas the average cost of tuition for two semesters can be as high as $8000, depending on what type of university you go to.

  1. DSST Tests

This is another way you earn credit for learning acquired from life experience and work. Like CLEP – you can use your knowledge from independent study, reading and on-the-job training. This program started out as a way for military service members to get college credit for the skills they learned on active duty. It was known then as DANTES (Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Educational Support). However, it has been open to civilians as well since 2006, when a company called Prometric started administering the exams. There are about 38 exams that cover specific subjects. The exams can also be as low as $80.

If we go back to Andrea in the example at the beginning of this article, the DSST option is something that she, as a member of the Navy, definitely has access to and would be able to use. She can work out her own studying time around caring for her family.

  1. Excelsior

This is an accredited online college that is focused on adult education. It lets you use your past accomplishments and finish your college degree faster. It saves you money. This is great for those full-time working adults with families who don’t have the time to sit in a college classroom. They have self-study options with credit by exams too.

For example, you can choose their proficiency exam for Introduction to Philosophy and get credit for this common general requirement without having to take a class in the subject. You can relax more instead of listening to a boring lecture.

  1. Credit by exam options at specific universities

Certain universities offer credit by examination options for students. One such university is Thomas Edison State University in Trenton, NJ. They offer the TECEP - Thomas Edison Credit by Exam Program, for students who want to acquire knowledge outside the traditional classroom. The University of Oregon is another institution that offers such a program.

If you’re wondering: “is there a way to get college credit without taking classes other than taking exams for credit,” there is. The American Council on Education, or ACE for short, helps adults turn their professional career training, exams and certifications into college credit with the CCRC – College Credit Recommendation Service. There are approximately 2,000 higher education institutions that recognize credit recommendations made by ACE. ACE provides a guide called the National Guide to College Credit for Workforce Training, which lists organizations that participate in ACE, and specific courses and exams for students to locate.

If you were in the military, there are credit recommendations for courses and occupations offered by all the branches of the military in the ACE Military Guide. The coursework that you completed while you were on active duty can be considered.

The American Council on Education has a transcript service that is recognized by most colleges and universities. There is professional training out there, such as Microsoft Office certification, that has an equivalent college credit you can earn.

Another way to earn college credit without taking the class is through a portfolio. This is not a quick way to earn credit however, but it still replaces the need to sit in a classroom. A portfolio includes reports for each course you are seeking credit for, which must include any supporting documentations for objectives learned. This supporting documentation would include:

  1. Corporate training credit - certificates of completing for on-the-job training, seminars and workshops

  2. Professional certification and licenses - for example, you can include a real estate license that you’ve earned.

  3. Transcripts - for coursework done at technical and business schools, as well as some unaccredited colleges.

  4. Non-classroom learning credit - This is comprised of personal and professional life experience. You can include any volunteer work that you’ve done that is related to the courses you are trying to get credit for in your portfolio.

  5. Competency Credit – you can produce a tangible product, such as a book, and earn college credit for it by putting it in your portfolio.

No matter how you choose to go about earning college credits, Prescott Papers will be there. We provide academic assistance and can help you prep for any exams. Our tutors are Ivy-League level scholars that have expertise in many subjects. The other benefits of paying money for this academic assistance are:

  1. 100% confidentiality - We will never give nor sell your information to anyone. No one needs to know that you came to us for help. We also maintain this confidential through a website that is backed by TLS (Transport Layer Security) protocol. Each visit you make to our website is private.

  2. Secure payment system - our online payment system is completely secure so you don’t have to worry about unauthorized people getting your information. That is because the payment information isn’t even stored on our website. We only handle transactions through PayPal, which is highly secure in its own right.

  3. Reliable 24/7 support - we are available by phone and email anytime to answer your questions and address your concerns. You’ll be able to get in touch with our tutors and writers at any time.

Most important of all, you will benefit from the knowledge of an elite scholar. These elite scholars at Prescott Papers can help you produce the high level work you’ll need for your life experience portfolio, or help you understand the concepts you need to pass particular exams. For example, if you’ve decided you’d rather just test out of a European History class you have to take rather than sit in the class 3 days a week, we have experts in European History that can provide any help you need in studying for the CLEP or DSST exam in that subject.

As you can see, there are plenty of options when it comes to getting college credit without taking the course. This allows students to continue their full-time jobs and/or spend more time with their families while they’re working towards their college degree.

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