College Level Examination Program Credit

Definition:This policy governs the awarding of credit to students who have taken College Level Examination Program examinations.
Authority:Executive Order 1036
Scope:The undergraduate curriculum of CSU San Marcos.
Responsible Division:Academic Affairs
Approval Date:03/24/2010
Implementation Date:04/15/2010
Originally Implemented:04/15/2010
Signature Page/PDF:View Signatures for College Level Examination Program Credit Policy


Notes

I. BACKGROUND

The College-Level Examination Program (CLEP), sponsored by The College Board, enables students, who have reached the university level of education outside the classroom and before matriculation, to demonstrate their knowledge and to earn baccalaureate credit.   

There are five CLEP General Examinations for which credit is awarded: College Mathematics, Social Science and History, English Composition, Natural Sciences, Humanities.  These General Examinations provide a comprehensive measure of undergraduate achievement in these basic areas of the liberal arts.  Students who successfully pass one or more of these examinations earn credit that applies to CSUSM's General Education Program.  The application of the credit is displayed on the Transfer Evaluation.

There are also currently 30 Subject Examinations.  These differ from the General Examinations in that they are more closely tied to course content and are intended to cover material that is typical of university courses in these subjects.  Before taking a Subject Examination, students should consult with the relevant department.  If the department approves, the students may earn credit for specific university courses by passing a Subject Examination.

California State University San Marcos awards graduation credit to students who have received a passing score on a CLEP examination in accordance with CSU Executive Order 1036 (Systemwide Admission Eligibility and/or Baccalaureate Credit Awarded for External Examinations, Experiential Learning, and Instruction in Non-Collegiate Settings) and follow-up Coded Memoranda - most recently AA-2009-11 (System-wide Credit by Evaluation), and as described below.

When a student receives a passing score a CLEP examination, s/he

  • Receives credit toward graduation which is recorded on the student's transcript,

and, depending on the course, s/he may also

  • Satisfy certain requirements for a major or minor,
  • Satisfy prerequisite requirements for a more advanced course, and
  • Satisfy certain General Education and other general graduation requirements.

When a student passes a CLEP exam, s/he may not also receive graduation credit for taking a course articulated with the CLEP exam, or a course which is a prerequisite thereto.

II. GRADUATION CREDIT 

Students receive units of credit toward graduation as described in the table in Appendix A.

The total credit earned through CLEP examinations and all other external examinations (excluding Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate) that may be applied to a baccalaureate shall not exceed 30 units.

III. APPLICATION TOWARD SPECIFIC REQUIREMENTS

Every CLEP exam will be articulated with CSUSM courses (to the extent possible) in a manner similar to articulation of courses taken at another institution for the purpose of satisfying the requirements for a major or minor. The College Board Course Descriptions: (http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/clep/exams.html) will form the basis of these articulation "agreements." 

The articulation agreements may differentiate between the different CLEP score levels and assign different course articulations to different scores. For example, an exam might have two cut-off scores with the lower one corresponding to the first course of a two-course sequence and the higher corresponding to the entire sequence.

The course(s) articulated with a level of performance on a CLEP exam may have a different number of total units than the units of graduation credit as described in the table in Appendix A.

  • If more units are awarded for successful completion of a CLEP exam than for the articulated course, then the excess units are "free elective" units which can be applied to the minimum number (usually, 120) of units required for a bachelor's degree.
  • If fewer units are awarded for successful completion of a CLEP exam than for the articulated course, then the student need not make up the difference provided that s/he still meets the minimum unit requirements for a bachelor's degree and for the number of units in the major exclusive of units used to meet General Education requirements.

A student may not receive graduation credit for subsequently taking a course which is articulated with the CLEP credit that s/he has received, nor for a course which is a prerequisite to such a course.

IV. USE IN GENERAL EDUCATION AND OTHER GENERAL GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS 

The General Education Committee shall determine which General Education requirements - if any - are satisfied by sufficiently high scores on CLEP exams.

The General Education Committee shall determine which of the other specific graduation requirements over which it has jurisdiction (the U.S. History, Constitution and American Ideals Requirement, the Language Other Than English Requirement, the Computer Competency Requirement, and the Graduate Writing Assessment Requirement) - if any - are satisfied by sufficiently high scores on CLEP exams.



Procedure

I. IMPLEMENTATION  

If approved in the 2009-2010 Academic Year,

  • Any student already evaluated for CLEP credit prior to approval of this policy will retain their evaluated credit;
  • Graduation credit will be awarded as in Section II of the Policy for all CLEP examinations taken July 1, 2010 or later; and
  • New course articulations take effect as they are received from academic departments by the campus Articulation Coordinator (See Section III of the Policy).

II. RECORDING OF CREDIT

A student who has taken CLEP examinations should request that scores be sent to the Office of Admissions.

Credit earned by examination will be identified as such on the student's permanent record. The name of the examination and the score earned will be included as well.

Appendix A:  CSUSM Credit Awarded for CLEP Examinations 

Recommendations from American Council of Education and Coded Memorandum AA-2009-11 (System-wide Credit by Evaluation)

Examination

Passing Score

Credit Granted

BUSINESS

Accounting, Principles of

50

6

Business Law, Introductory

50

3

Information Systems and Computer Applications

50

3

Marketing, Principles of

50

3

Management, Principles of

50

3

COMPOSITION AND LITERATURE

American Literature

50

6

Analyzing and Interpreting Literature

50

6

Composition, Freshman College

50

6

English Composition with or without Essay

50

6

English Literature

50

6

Humanities

50

6

MODERN LANGUAGES

French

50

62

6

12

German

50

63

6

12

Spanish

50

66

6

12

SOCIAL SCIENCES AND HISTORY

American Government

50

3

Educational Psychology, Introduction to

50

3

History of the United States I

50

3

# History of the United States II

50

3

Human Growth and Development

50

3

Macroeconomics, Principles of

50

3

Microeconomics, Principles of

50

3

Psychology, Introductory

50

3

Social Sciences and History

50

6

Sociology, Introductory

50

3

Western Civilization I

50

3

Western Civilization II

50

3

SCIENCE AND MATHEMATICS

Algebra, College

50

3

Algebra - Trigonometry, College

50

3

Biology

50

6

Calculus

51

3

Chemistry

48

50

3

6

Mathematics, College

50

6

Natural Sciences

50

6

Precalculus

50

3

Trigonometry

50

3