Posted in CLEP, Credit by Exam, DSST, Math

Testing out of Math

For the non-mathy majors, you’ll likely only need 3 credits (1 course) in math for an entire bachelor’s degree!  This makes testing out of math extremely appealing (does that mean NO MATH CLASS IN COLLEGE?  Yep! That’s exactly what that means!)  I’m going to list all of the test-out options by their level of difficulty from lowest to highest.

When you find the math your teen needs for their degree (ex. College Algebra) be sure to also grab the maths leading up to that level.  While lower maths may not meet their degree requirement, they’ll frequently count as general education electives!  One final tip, you usually can’t use exam credit to replace a course you’ve failed at a college, and you also won’t get to duplicate credit you’ve already earned at a college.


DSST Math for Liberal Arts

CLEP College Mathematics

DSST Fundamentals of College Algebra

CLEP College Algebra

CLEP Pre-Calculus

AP Calculus AB

AP Calculus BC



Statistics can, but doesn’t always, count as meeting a math requirement.  It’s still a good exam to consider including anyway because it’s often a requirement for students heading off to graduate school.  Students who have completed Algebra 1 will be well-suited to tackle this material.  I used the Statistics DSST exam to meet my own grad school entrance requirement in 2012 (Thank you, Khan Academy.  They taught me everything I needed to know for that exam).

DSST Principles of Statistics   (all multiple choice)

AP Statistics   (multiple choice and free response)

(these two exams are considered duplicates, so choose one or the other – not both)


If this post makes your head spin and stomach drop, you might like my previous math post a little better:  Math Success 4 Math Averse


Posted in AP Advanced Placement, CLEP, Curriculum, Distance Learning, DSST, High School, Self-Paced Learning

The Great Courses

In 2008, I was struggling through a college Anatomy & Physiology course when I turned to youtube for some help.  I stumbled upon a video by Dr. Anthony A. Goodman – it blew me away.  Not only did he help me understand the information, but I dug until I found the rest of his lectures- they were that good.  As it turned out, they were eventually pulled from Youtube for copyright violation (oops) but I found the source: The Great Courses

Here’s the short of it:  The Great Courses are usually (not always) college-level learning taught by well respected and highly regarded professors.  These are not worth college credit when taken alone, rather they are used in your homeschool as a high school curriculum.  You could then marry the program with other test prep material if you desire to finish your teen’s program with AP, CLEP, or other exam credit.

Format:  Individual Great Courses are available on DVD, CD, Audio, or you can stream their whole Plus catalog on demand through their new Great Courses Plus program (monthly subscription).   While I am not a Plus subscriber, the Plus program looks amazing!  It will appeal greatly to those of you who use technology in your classroom or are already comfortable with products like Amazon Prime, Apple TV, mobile device based streaming, for entertainment.  This product fits into that category perfectly.   Plus program subscribers also have the option of purchasing hard copies at a deep discount (70% off).  

This promotional link gives you 1 month free:

The Great Courses Plus – One Month Free

CLEP & AP Friendly?  I asked our membership if they thought the Great Courses alone were “enough” to prepare their teen for an AP exam or CLEP exam, or if it served as the main curriculum and they followed up with CLEP/AP prep.  This is what they had to say:

Jude Barrier Dickson writes…” I don’t think any TGC {The Great Courses} is enough for an AP or CLEP exam. This is NOT to say they are not valuable, and be sure to know we use them extensively, but I find the best practice for exams are flash cards of info, presented as they would be in an AP or CLEP test.”

Wendy G.  writes… “Lots of CLEP and AP here and I also don’t think TGC would alone be enough, we just use them as supplemental.”

Selecting TGC for Your Homeschool

Since no single course stands alone as your curriculum and test prep, this small selection is representative of the types of courses I believe would enhance your homeschooling for college credit program.  I’ve deliberately selected courses from the Plus list since they are all also available for DVD purchase if you choose.  (Not all DVDs are available to stream)

SCIENCE: The Great Courses Plus

AP or CLEP Biology Program:  Biology The Science of Life, The Joy of Science, Understanding Genetics, and What Science Knows About Cancer.

New course:  Plant Science: an Introduction to Botany

AP or CLEP Psychology Program:  Mysteries of Human Behavior, Biology, and Human Behavior, Understanding the Brain, and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

AP or CLEP Chemistry Program:  Chemistry our Universe, Chemistry 2nd Edition, Nature of Matter, and Organic Chemistry.

HISTORY: The Great Courses

AP or CLEP American History Program:  History of the United States 2nd Edition, Experiencing America, World War II, and Decisive Battles of History.

New course:  American’s Founding Fathers

DSST Civil War Program: American Civil War, History of the United States 2nd Edition, and The Life of Abraham Lincoln

ECONOMICS: The Great Courses

AP or CLEP Economics Program:  An Economic History of the World, The Economics of Uncertainty, and New Global Economy.

New Course:  The Art of Investing

OTHER: The Great Courses to Consider

DSST Cultural Anthropology Program:  Customs of the World and Cultures of the World.

Coming Fall 2017:  Anthropology and the Study of Humanity

DSST Astronomy Program:  The Remarkable Science of Ancient Astronomy

AP or CLEP Western Civilization Program:  Foundations of Western Civilization (coming Fall 2017)

AP or DSST Environmental Science (Human Cultural Geography): Understanding Cultural and Human Geography, The Science of Energy, and Fundamentals of Sustainable Living.

AP or DSST Statistics and Probability Program:  Big Data How Analytics are Changing the World, Probability Made Clear, Mathematics of Games and Puzzles, and Game Theory.

AP Music Theory Program:  Music and History, Beethoven’s Piano Sonatas, Mozart’s Chamber Music, Greatest Orchestral Works, and Great Solo Piano Works.

CLEP Humanities Program:  Understanding Opera, History of European Art, Masterpieces of the Ancient World, How to Look at and Understand Great Art, The World’s Greatest Churches, The Louvre, and Understand Great Music.

If your family has used The Great Courses in your homeschool, let me know your favorites, and I’ll add them to this page!  Contact Jennifer

Posted in ACE, DSST

DSST Expiration / Revision Dates

ACE is the third-party review organization that colleges use to decide if a class or exam is “worth” college credit or not. In other words, DSST exams are worth college credit because they have undergone review by ACE.

When ACE reviews an exam, they always assign a date range for that review. At the ending date, the exam must be reviewed again or removed. If it is reviewed and renewed, a new date range is issued. In general, DSST likes to keep test takers informed, and often posts on their website when an exam is undergoing revision (they sometimes call it being “refreshed”) and a target date for the change.  As such, it’s a little bit easier to track DSST exam revisions than CLEP!

All date ranges and the history of date ranges are available by searching the ACE Database.

These dates are no guarantee that there will be an exam revision or removal, but the expiration dates are established by ACE,  as such, you should plan your high school accordingly, and proceed as if an exam will be revised or removed on its expiration date to be on the safe side.

A handful of exams were revised 4/1/2016 despite their deadline not being up, so be aware that even with the best planning, you should remain flexible.

NOTE:  upon expiration (12/31/2014) the following exams were DISCONTINUED.  If you’ve already taken one of these, no worries- your score is still valid.  However, DSST testing centers will no longer offer these exams:

  • Business Law II
  • Introduction to the Modern Middle East
  • Physical Geology
  • Principles of Financial Accounting
  • Western Europe Since 1945.

Currently, 36 DSST exams are evaluated for college credit.

A History of the Vietnam War   11/1/2013 – 12/31/2017  (Deadline approaching)

Art of the Western World   11/1/2013 – 12/31/2017 (Deadline approaching)

Astronomy  11/1/2013 – 12/31/2017 (Deadline approaching)

Business Ethics and Society  6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Business Mathematics   6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Computing and Information Technology   1/1/2016 – 12/31/2018

Criminal Justice  6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Environmental Science  6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Ethics in America  1/1/2016 – 12/31/2018

Foundations of Education  11/1/2013 – 12/31/2017 (Deadline approaching)

Fundamentals of College Algebra  6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Fundamentals of Counseling   6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Fundamentals of Cybersecurity  6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

General Anthropology 7/19/2016 – 12/31/2018

Health and Human Development (formerly Here’s to Your Health)  4/1/2016 – 12/31/2018

History of the Soviet Union  4/1/2016 – 12/31/2018

Human Resource Management  6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Human Cultural Geography  11/1/2013 – 12/31/2017 (Deadline approaching)

Introduction to Business 4/1/2016 – 12/31/2018

Introduction to Law Enforcement 11/1/2013 – 12/31/2017 (Deadline approaching)

Introduction to World Religions  4/1/2016 – 12/31/2018

Lifespan Developmental Psychology  6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Management Information Systems 1/1/2016 – 12/31/2018

Math for Liberal Arts  11/1/2016 – 10/31/2019

Money and Banking  1/1/2016 – 12/31/2018

Organizational Behavior  6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Personal Finance 1/1/2016 – 12/31/2018

Principles of Advanced English Composition  11/1/2016 – 10/31/2019

Principles of Finance  6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Principles of Physical Science I  11/1/2013 – 12/31/2017 (Deadline approaching)

Principles of Public Speaking   11/1/2013 – 12/31/2017 (Deadline approaching)

Principles of Statistics 6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Principles of Supervision  4/1/2016 – 12/31/2018

Substance Abuse 4/1/2016 – 12/31/2018

Technical Writing  6/1/2017 – 2/29/2020

Civil War and Reconstruction 11/1/2013 – 12/31/2017 (Deadline approaching)