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BakersDozen

Turns out AP/CLEP doesn't matter

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Read through what the AP or CLEP exams will result in as far as college credit, especially the English exams. If my dds take the AP exam they will get credit for the exact same lower level English class (ENG 101) plus an elective credit as they would if they take the CLEP. Why did I think the AP might give them an honors English class credit? I've read so many threads on AP vs. CLEP and was struggling with which one to do (leaning toward AP just for the honors distinction) yet it doesn't matter at all, does it? I guess I can save the $600 I was going to spend on an AP English class and just have her focus on the CLEP test.

 

Seems like AP should count for more.

 

Rambling post...no real purpose. I feel like I've just wasted 2 days of my life researching and agonizing over AP stuff when all I had to do was look at the charts at the CC and see that both lead to the same end.

 

Sigh...please tell me some of you struggled this much with high school/college planning. Please.

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Sigh...please tell me some of you struggled this much with high school/college planning. Please.

 

 

Yes! :grouphug:

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Thanks. Good grief, I'm in tears. This is so stressful. I don't want to fail my kids by missing something huge. My parents were so ignorant and uninvolved that I only took the SAT/ACT because I overheard kids talking about it at school. No one told me about CLEP or anything like that. The responsibility for knowing everything available and choosing one thing over another is about to do me in. :(

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Yes, we've all struggled. :tongue_smilie: And spent countless hours researching, writing out possibilities, erasing, looking up other possibilities, scratching through. I, for one, am glad there are so many options out there! But, it can make it draining to navigate.

 

My dd took AP Eng. Lang & Comp and then, because she was unable to get another class through dual-enrollment, filled out a semester by taking a CLEP in literature. She had an excellent score that would have given her lots of credits. BUT. The university would only take one, not both. Oops. It was very little skin off my back because 1) we had chosen the AP Eng Lang & Comp for the solid writing instruction she would get and 2) she barely studied for the CLEP exam. Had we known, I'm sure she would not have done the CLEP. But we most definitely would have done the AP. But APs are free for us if we take them through our state virtual program.

 

Lisa

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Thanks. Good grief, I'm in tears. This is so stressful. I don't want to fail my kids by missing something huge. My parents were so ignorant and uninvolved that I only took the SAT/ACT because I overheard kids talking about it at school. No one told me about CLEP or anything like that. The responsibility for knowing everything available and choosing one thing over another is about to do me in. :(

 

I'm in the same boat!!! Sleepless nights, hours anayzing and re-analyzing and over-analyzing...

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My dd took AP Eng. Lang & Comp and then, because she was unable to get another class through dual-enrollment, filled out a semester by taking a CLEP in literature. She had an excellent score that would have given her lots of credits. BUT. The university would only take one, not both.

 

I found this little tidbit out tonight as well. So now to decide which route to take...AP or CLEP English. At least I can forget doing both.

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I found this little tidbit out tonight as well. So now to decide which route to take...AP or CLEP English. At least I can forget doing both.

 

 

One thing to consider since I think I remember you posting that your kids may start at a CC and then transfer to a 4 yr university--the CC might allow credit for Eng 101 via CLEP and yet depending on the university, the university may not. APs are more likely to be accepted for credit than CLEPs. However, there are schools that also do not give credit for APs. (though based on your other thread---I think that I am remembering the correct person---I do not think the schools you think your kids might attend would reject AP credit.)

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It all depends on where your dd ends up going to school. A lot of schools accept AP for credit that don't accept CLEP for credit. And then there are the schools that accept AP for credit only if the score is a 5.

 

UT Dallas accepts AP English for credit (score of 4 or 5), but not the CLEP. They do accept a lot of other CLEP tests for credit, but not English.

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CLEP is good for some college credit at some schools, but is NOT as helpful for the admission process as AP scores are. (YMMV) I considered everything that we had our daughter do in high school as college PREP work. I did not expect any of it, including her dual enrollment classes, to count toward her college education. It was used to help get her into the type of college she wanted to attend. I think CLEP may be a better choice for my son who doesn't really want to go to college, but would like to earn a degree. As it turned out for us, dd didn't take any AP or CLEP tests, but her ACT scores and SAT II tests (and her volunteer work, and her letters of recommendation, and her community college grades) were enough get her into her college of choice.

 

HTH

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No advice here -- I just wanted to let you know I'm right there with you, a combination of :confused: and :willy_nilly:

 

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Thanks. Good grief, I'm in tears. This is so stressful. I don't want to fail my kids by missing something huge. My parents were so ignorant and uninvolved that I only took the SAT/ACT because I overheard kids talking about it at school. No one told me about CLEP or anything like that. The responsibility for knowing everything available and choosing one thing over another is about to do me in. :(

My parents did the same thing. I am so worried that I will miss something huge. I guess we just do the best we can and hope they know we have their best interests in our hearts. :grouphug:

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Thank you all for responding. I feel much more peaceful tonight as the AP/CLEP issue muddling my brain seems to be straightened out. I checked with the 4-year university dd would hopefully transfer to after CC and learned a lot.

 

I want better for her than I had.

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Sometimes which route to take also depends on the kid, not the credit. Which class / approach will best challenge that particular kid and provide and rigorous but not overwhelming class in the subject?

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Yes, high school is tough. This was never a consideration for me, but several of my friends bailed on homeschooling through high school mostly because the process of configuring everything was too intimidating for them. They wanted a guidance counsellor to tell them what to do.

 

I hate that there are so many inconsistencies in how they view the credits, but your best bet is always to ask and ask again. I had discounted the CLEP Composition exam, but just found out that the CC accepts it, and then the 4-year we're targeting will take it if you score high enough and take their "department research" course, which is a 300-level class that everyone has to take anyway. So I guess we'll head that way and revise if told otherwise.

 

Foreign language APs are more universal. CLEP for history credit is a given.

 

Otherwise it is more a proof of ability.

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Thank you all for responding. I feel much more peaceful tonight as the AP/CLEP issue muddling my brain seems to be straightened out. I checked with the 4-year university dd would hopefully transfer to after CC and learned a lot.

 

I want better for her than I had.

 

For what it's worth, I think you're doing a great job. Research is part of our job as "counselor." Sometimes the research will show what we expect and sometimes we'll have to adjust what we thought we knew... no matter what, it's never wasted. We'll always have the knowledge - and can then share it with others in case those folks are in a similar boat. Sometimes they are, and sometimes not, so one can never say "x" with 100% application to all, but we can relate our experiences.

 

For oldest, he took the CC English class and it transferred to his 4 year school (though he told me his 4 year equivalent class would have been more rigorous). AP would have also worked. I honestly don't know about Clep.

 

For middle, his 4 year school requires all freshmen to take a writing course. Neither AP nor Clep would have exempted him from it.

 

Research is good - you're doing a great job figuring things out for your student(s)!

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Research is good - you're doing a great job figuring things out for your student(s)!

 

:iagree:

 

And just for additional reassurance, don't assume that your kids would be receiving better advising in they were enrolled in your public school.

 

My friend's son came home from our public school a few weeks ago with his 9th grade schedule that had been signed off on by the guidance counselor and just needed the parents' signatures. His schedule did not include a foreign language. When his dad questioned his son about this glaring omission, the son said that his guidance counselor said that foreign language was an elective and the son didn't have to take it.

 

Thinking that his son somehow misunderstood, the father went in to discuss the issue with the guidance counselor. Sure enough, the son had not misunderstood: the guidance counselor told the dad that his son could get into a good college without studying foreign language. Needless so say, the parents were appalled at the level of incompetence. Luckily for this boy, his parents were not just blindly following the advice of the "expert'. The son now has foreign language on his schedule.

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It was late (for me) when I responded to this thread last night. I hope that I did not sound snarky--that was not my intention.

 

Here is the issue: there is no one size solution to the problem of college which is why, when we wear the guidance counselor hat, we do a lot of hand wringing and second guessing.

 

My son attends a college that does not give any credit for CLEPs. But, as others have noted, is your goal college credit or to make a point in the admissions process that your mommy grades are meaningful?

 

For some students, CLEP can help "get 'er done". That is their goal. Others prefer the engagement that the classroom offers.

 

With regard to AP or CLEP English exams, let me also note that a number of colleges require all first years to take a writing oriented first year seminar--even if they have AP or CLEP credit. These seminars are often across the curriculum. My son took his writing intensive first year seminar in the Music department even though he began college with the intention of being an Archaeology major.

 

So much depends on your kid and the college.

 

Just try to get some sleep and maintain your secret supply of chocolate.

 

Best regards,

Jane

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Yes, high school is tough. This was never a consideration for me, but several of my friends bailed on homeschooling through high school mostly because the process of configuring everything was too intimidating for them. They wanted a guidance counsellor to tell them what to do.

 

The whole guidance counsellor thing is why we chose to use CollegePlus! having someone walk my daughter through the process is worth every $. Also the Learning Network, they have is extremely helpful to my girl. We will start dd#2 in January with CollegePrep and then onto CollegePlus! They now have 5 options of schools to graduate/transfer their credits from which is very helpful.

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CLEP is generally taken once a student is in college and they see a reason to take it. So don't panic if you don't have CLEP tests all done in high school. And even missing the AP tests isn't a complete disaster. A lot of kids who load up on AP don't always find it translates into all the credits they hoped for. Sometimes even none. It's a good idea to have a college in mind and figure out what credit you can get with that college with AP.

 

About the foreign language -- there really are kids getting into all kinds of colleges with all sorts of "deficiencies". Most colleges suggest a course of high school study, but there are a lot of colleges that will make exceptions for students that are solid otherwise. The big exception to this might be some state schools that have boxes they want to check off. Univ of CA used to be in this category (and may still be -- I'm just not there to know). This is why all the CA high schools had requirements students had to fulfill if they were thinking of college.

 

The student in question may have said he didn't care about getting into X school, but was interested in Y -- and the counselor may have realized that foreign language really wasn't necessary to apply to Y. It may still have been dumb advice (because said student may have later decided X was the only place for him), but there might be reasons why the counselor said this.

 

As the student was only in 9th grade, too, the counselor may have been suggesting waiting a year or two. As most colleges seem to see 2 years of foreign language as acceptable, it's certainly possible to get those in the 11th and 12th grade year, skipping foreign language in the 9th and 10th year.

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Wow! I took a look at that document from FL (where we also live) and was surprised to see that only 41% of students got college credit for the AP classes. Looks like CC is a much better option with 94% getting college credit.

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I went the CC route. I felt it was a huge risk in doing AP or Clep. I have been hearing more and more colleges are not accepting AP or Clep...chose not to take the risk.

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Yes, we've all struggled. :tongue_smilie: And spent countless hours researching, writing out possibilities, erasing, looking up other possibilities, scratching through. I, for one, am glad there are so many options out there! But, it can make it draining to navigate.

 

My dd took AP Eng. Lang & Comp and then, because she was unable to get another class through dual-enrollment, filled out a semester by taking a CLEP in literature. She had an excellent score that would have given her lots of credits. BUT. The university would only take one, not both. Oops. It was very little skin off my back because 1) we had chosen the AP Eng Lang & Comp for the solid writing instruction she would get and 2) she barely studied for the CLEP exam. Had we known, I'm sure she would not have done the CLEP. But we most definitely would have done the AP. But APs are free for us if we take them through our state virtual program.

 

Lisa

 

 

This is a very good point. Be careful not to confuse the race for testing out of college classes as necessarily being the same as providing a solid education for your child. The first should serve the second, not the other way around. I can't imagine CLEP test prep providing the same educational value as a well-taught AP English Lang. course. Know your goals.

 

Both of my older kids chose to take an AP European History course even though they did not plan to test in it. The teacher is excellent and the class provided them with far more sophisticated discussion than they were getting in other classes. Credits aren't the only reason to take and advanced course.

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Wow! I took a look at that document from FL (where we also live) and was surprised to see that only 41% of students got college credit for the AP classes. Looks like CC is a much better option with 94% getting college credit.

 

 

I looked at this and I wish they were comparing apples to apples (say, all students going to FL state schools...). I didn't see where that was the case, so it's difficult to draw conclusions. (There was an asterisk, but I couldn't see what it referenced.)

 

IME, students taking AP tend to aim toward higher level schools (and those don't always accept credits from either AP or DE). Students taking DE tend to aim toward state or mid level schools which often accept credit.

 

Many also take AP without taking the test due to not wanting credit from it or not feeling they would do well. I'm wondering if those were counted too - or just those who took the test (the latter would be a better comparison unless they also count all those doing DE who dropped out prior to the end).

 

It's scary to think a "C" will carry on as credit from a DE class. It's the same here in PA, but having been a mastery homeschooler, it's not what I'd want to see from high school to go to college - unless - I suppose - it wasn't a class that would continue on. Most colleges will only give AP credit for a 4 or 5, so that could also be part of the difference.

 

I'm not anti DE or AP... mine have done both (more DE than AP). I'm just offering observations. Stats are not always as simple as they look. (We've done AP Stats. ;) )

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This is a very good point. Be careful not to confuse the race for testing out of college classes as necessarily being the same as providing a solid education for your child. The first should serve the second, not the other way around. I can't imagine CLEP test prep providing the same educational value as a well-taught AP English Lang. course. Know your goals.

 

Both of my older kids chose to take an AP European History course even though they did not plan to test in it. The teacher is excellent and the class provided them with far more sophisticated discussion than they were getting in other classes. Credits aren't the only reason to take and advanced course.

 

 

I agree with this - in our case the AP Classes were a great option because my dd was really interested in science, and our freshman year 'high school' level Chemistry course here at home was not really rigorous enough for her. This was absolutely due to my lack of experience and expertise with the material. At that point we were just looking for something that would fit the bill for her... the choice was AP or CC... and AP classes online were less disruptive to our family schedule as a whole than having to drive to CC three times a week in the morning. At the time I would not have been comfortable leaving her 8yo brother home on his own for school for hours 3x/week.

 

As others have said, the colleges (and even individual departments within colleges) had different guidelines about what AP's would earn credit, and we had no way of knowing how that was going to shake out in 10th grade when she started AP classes ... because dd ended up applying to different schools than she had been interested in when she started high school.

 

As it stands, I am really glad she had the APClasses, even though she will end up taking credit for one or two of them --- both outside her major. She will probably decide that it is more important to retake something like physics, because so much of her degree will be built upon the foundational course, instead of relying on her memory from a high school class to get her through. I am totally OK with that. The AP's were so much more than I could have put together for her.

 

Additionally, I know for sure that in her case the 'outside grades' and test scores were an absolute must for her applications --- for internship opportunities in high school and ultimately for college. More importantly (IMO), the opportunity to gain a much deeper understanding of the material and fuel her interest in math and science was the most important benefit.... with or without college credit.

 

Good luck!

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I just went on Purdue University's website. They do accept AP courses but you really do not test out of their courses by doing so. It just carries more weight for admissions that is it. No testing out at Purdue University.

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I also checked Purdue University AP qualifications. It depends on your scores and depends on the academic advisor if you test out of something or earn credit. They are a bit iffy on this than they are clep. Not sure but you can check it out as an example. The only reason I am focusing on Purdue University is it is one of the harder colleges to get into than IUPUI or IU.

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I looked at this and I wish they were comparing apples to apples (say, all students going to FL state schools...). I didn't see where that was the case, so it's difficult to draw conclusions. (There was an asterisk, but I couldn't see what it referenced.)

 

IME, students taking AP tend to aim toward higher level schools (and those don't always accept credits from either AP or DE). Students taking DE tend to aim toward state or mid level schools which often accept credit.

 

Many also take AP without taking the test due to not wanting credit from it or not feeling they would do well. I'm wondering if those were counted too - or just those who took the test (the latter would be a better comparison unless they also count all those doing DE who dropped out prior to the end).

 

It's scary to think a "C" will carry on as credit from a DE class. It's the same here in PA, but having been a mastery homeschooler, it's not what I'd want to see from high school to go to college - unless - I suppose - it wasn't a class that would continue on. Most colleges will only give AP credit for a 4 or 5, so that could also be part of the difference.

 

I'm not anti DE or AP... mine have done both (more DE than AP). I'm just offering observations. Stats are not always as simple as they look. (We've done AP Stats. ;) )

 

While I agree that the comparison may not be apples to apples and statistics can always be tweaked to say what you want, I do think there is some validity in comparing.

 

In FL, high school students that can pass the CC entrance exam can take DE classes for FREE - thus providing motivation for them to do so. Also, I know that Florida students taking AP via FLVS are required to take the AP test to get credit for the class http://www.flvs.net/areas/flvscourses/Pages/APCourses.aspx and I suspect that may be true at all public high schools. In addition, the passing rate for the AP exams is 43% which might explain the asterisk. http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2010-08-01/news/os-advanced-placement-schools-08-02-220100801_1_advanced-placement-college-credit-florida-high-school-students

 

I guess my point is that if your goal is to obtain the college credit, then CC might be your better option in Florida. One other factor that might influence things here is FL is that all CCs have articulation agreements with all Florida 4yr universities and in fact nearly all CCs are converting to 4 yr colleges. That gives me a little more faith in our CC classes that I might not have otherwise.

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I also checked Purdue University AP qualifications. It depends on your scores and depends on the academic advisor if you test out of something or earn credit. They are a bit iffy on this than they are clep. Not sure but you can check it out as an example. The only reason I am focusing on Purdue University is it is one of the harder colleges to get into than IUPUI or IU.

 

My reading of the Purdue policy is that it's not up to the advisor if a student gets credit. That is based on the scores. The advisor helps figure out where best to apply credit that is determined to be not the same as an actual Purdue course. In other words you might get a math credit but not credit for calculus 16500. If your degree requires just math credit then the ap course may fill that. If you need calc 16500 then you need the higher ap score that equates to that specific course.

 

http://www.admissions.purdue.edu/transfercredit/collegeboardap.php

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While I agree that the comparison may not be apples to apples and statistics can always be tweaked to say what you want, I do think there is some validity in comparing.

 

In FL, high school students that can pass the CC entrance exam can take DE classes for FREE - thus providing motivation for them to do so. Also, I know that Florida students taking AP via FLVS are required to take the AP test to get credit for the class http://www.flvs.net/.../APCourses.aspx and I suspect that may be true at all public high schools. In addition, the passing rate for the AP exams is 43% which might explain the asterisk. http://articles.orla...school-students

 

I guess my point is that if your goal is to obtain the college credit, then CC might be your better option in Florida. One other factor that might influence things here is FL is that all CCs have articulation agreements with all Florida 4yr universities and in fact nearly all CCs are converting to 4 yr colleges. That gives me a little more faith in our CC classes that I might not have otherwise.

 

 

I'd still want to be sure the quality/level were the same (or similar). I know with our school, we dropped AP when very few students could get a 2 on the test. They replaced it with DE - sometimes CC classes and sometimes a local 4 year school, but most classes are still taught in our high school using the same teacher as AP. Now, there is no end of year test to determine credit - the teacher determines the credit. There is no better "knowledge" among the students, but they do have college credit and those courses HAVE to be accepted by our state schools as long as the grade is a C or better. This isn't that big of a deal if it's a once and done course that isn't really needed by the student (Bio for a non-Bio major). It IS a big deal if the student needs the knowledge from the course to do the next one (like Calc, for example).

 

Many of our students have had problems in college. I always recommend students take a placement test (if available) for their courses... interestingly enough, MANY test into remedial classes AFTER having successfully completed our DE courses. But, none of that would show up in stats (like on your page) as they do have their college credit from the course.

 

Investigate carefully. IME, asking professors at the planned destination school and/or placement tests are good sources of info. Simply going based upon college credit from a DE course is not. AP, at least, was a national test that gave a hint about common knowledge learned - and colleges could make their assessment based upon it. It's difficult for the college when they HAVE to accept credit (as they do here in PA) but they don't necessarily know the knowledge of the student.

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I've decided that dd shouldn't do any CLEP or AP tests. I don't want her to get credit for classes she hasn't taken. If she were to get credit for freshman level classes and had to begin in sophomore classes, I'm concerned that she might not truly be prepared. Passing a test is not the same as going to class and doing what is required to pass the actual class at that particular college. I read on another thread about a college student who was seeing the students who passed AP tests struggling in their classes because they should have taken those beginning classes as a review.

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A great thread! Definitely a ymmv. If your dd knows the schools she wants for admission, it makes it a lot easier. A lot of schools have stopped giving AP exemption due to $$$ lost or so the story goes. CLEP is on a school by school basis. It's best to keep doing what you are doing right now, and keep the research updated each year. Ds 16 is definitely going the cc route but I am encouraging him to take a few AP classes, CLEP tests along the way.

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Agreeing with many here...it really does depend on the college, and there are many paths, so don't stress too much that one little missing piece of this college puzzle is going to make or break the experience for your kids.

 

FWIW, and like others have said, YMM definitely V, my daughter didn't do any APs, no CLEP exams, no SAT subject tests. She did do dual enrollment for her senior year at a local private university. She had interesting volunteer work, did a yearlong student exchange, and had some decent recommendations.

 

She got into a few good, selective even, schools with merit money. It did seem like colleges really varied as to whether they would accept APs, CLEPs, or even the dual enrollment courses for credit.

 

If your kids know exactly where they want to go, that makes the decisions easier!

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I've decided that dd shouldn't do any CLEP or AP tests. I don't want her to get credit for classes she hasn't taken. If she were to get credit for freshman level classes and had to begin in sophomore classes, I'm concerned that she might not truly be prepared. Passing a test is not the same as going to class and doing what is required to pass the actual class at that particular college. I read on another thread about a college student who was seeing the students who passed AP tests struggling in their classes because they should have taken those beginning classes as a review.

 

 

Do you have any idea where she would like to go to college (I'm guessing so from your original research.) or what field she's interested in majoring in? Having credits going in to college can be a plus at freeing up the schedule a bit (less "needed" classes allows for more "wanted" classes). What many suggest is to pick classes that are outside of the major (History for a Stem major, Math for an Art major, etc) and test out of those for potential credit. Keep the classes in the major (or needed for the major) to do at the college. It can still help to do rigorous prep for classes within the major as many of her peers at college will have done that too. Good preparation is terrific for an easier transition - even if the first classes end up a little on the boring side (can happen, but doesn't always happen).

 

If you know where she wants to go, you'll know which paths can give her that credit (AP, Clep, DE) and what classes she'll need credit in to graduate. Then just pick outside her major.

 

Just my two cents...

 

Oldest got credit for English (DE).

Middle got credit for Psych and Stats (AP)

Youngest might get credit for English, Bio, and/or Stats (DE). Where he's going hasn't been determined yet...

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Do you have any idea where she would like to go to college (I'm guessing so from your original research.) or what field she's interested in majoring in? Having credits going in to college can be a plus at freeing up the schedule a bit (less "needed" classes allows for more "wanted" classes). What many suggest is to pick classes that are outside of the major (History for a Stem major, Math for an Art major, etc) and test out of those for potential credit. Keep the classes in the major (or needed for the major) to do at the college. It can still help to do rigorous prep for classes within the major as many of her peers at college will have done that too. Good preparation is terrific for an easier transition - even if the first classes end up a little on the boring side (can happen, but doesn't always happen).

 

If you know where she wants to go, you'll know which paths can give her that credit (AP, Clep, DE) and what classes she'll need credit in to graduate. Then just pick outside her major.

 

Just my two cents...

 

Oldest got credit for English (DE).

Middle got credit for Psych and Stats (AP)

Youngest might get credit for English, Bio, and/or Stats (DE). Where he's going hasn't been determined yet...

 

 

I have thought about it in terms of those types of subjects. She wants to go to a Christian college if she can get good scholarships. She says that because she would like to go away to school and live on campus; however, she doesn't want to live on campus at a secular university. If she doesn't get enough money to afford private, she'll stay home and go to the 4 year college about 15 miles away. She's not sure what she will major in, though. She's not been a math lover at all, so I think she'll take her 4th math credit as dual enrollment and get that credit out of the way. We haven't really researched it much, yet.

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I had a meeting Dean in charge of the Honors College at the University of South Carolina last summer. His recommendations were as follows:

 

1. Not all AP/CC classes are created equal. Although you may be able to pass a test, it doesn't ensure proficiency.

2. Use these types of credits for non-major related courses, i.e. if you are going into engineering, a lit credit makes a lot of sense

3. Even if you did well on your AP/Clep etc... take the intro courses in your major. Too many kids struggle because every school's scope and sequence is different. A strong foundation in your major will only help you in the long run.

4. It's not about money it's about the lack of ability of the students coming in to perform at the same level as the students who took the intro course at the college level. There are too many who study to the test and do not have the knowledge needed to succeed in higher level courses.

 

This is what I have heard so many times from college professors and parents of college students. It is not to say those tests aren't necessary for entrance, but don't assume those are intended to replace classes at the University. There is a reason so many Universities are changing their requirements.

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I had a meeting Dean in charge of the Honors College at the University of South Carolina last summer. His recommendations were as follows:

 

1. Not all AP/CC classes are created equal. Although you may be able to pass a test, it doesn't ensure proficiency.

2. Use these types of credits for non-major related courses, i.e. if you are going into engineering, a lit credit makes a lot of sense

3. Even if you did well on your AP/Clep etc... take the intro courses in your major. Too many kids struggle because every school's scope and sequence is different. A strong foundation in your major will only help you in the long run.

4. It's not about money it's about the lack of ability of the students coming in to perform at the same level as the students who took the intro course at the college level. There are too many who study to the test and do not have the knowledge needed to succeed in higher level courses.

 

This is what I have heard so many times from college professors and parents of college students. It is not to say those tests aren't necessary for entrance, but don't assume those are intended to replace classes at the University. There is a reason so many Universities are changing their requirements.

 

 

:iagree: I've heard the exact same thing from so many professors... that's why IMO it's best to let the professors (maybe advisers) at your destination college give advice. They'll know if an AP (or whatever) course is a duplicate or not. They'll also know if it's ok to take that Lit credit when you aren't an English major. They aren't in it for the money - they don't get any more $$ if your student takes that intro class or not - but they do see the results of previous students and can use their wisdom to guide current students. If they say the course is a duplicate - take the credit and don't worry. If not, take the course and be better prepared.

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1. Not all AP/CC classes are created equal. Although you may be able to pass a test, it doesn't ensure proficiency.

2. Use these types of credits for non-major related courses, i.e. if you are going into engineering, a lit credit makes a lot of sense

3. Even if you did well on your AP/Clep etc... take the intro courses in your major. Too many kids struggle because every school's scope and sequence is different. A strong foundation in your major will only help you in the long run.

4. It's not about money it's about the lack of ability of the students coming in to perform at the same level as the students who took the intro course at the college level. There are too many who study to the test and do not have the knowledge needed to succeed in higher level courses.

 

This is what I have heard so many times from college professors and parents of college students. It is not to say those tests aren't necessary for entrance, but don't assume those are intended to replace classes at the University. There is a reason so many Universities are changing their requirements.

 

 

I completely agree. That's why I am quoting your entire message. Very well said.

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My son got 7 CLEP courses done between February and August of his senior year in high school.

 

He now has a MUCH lighter class load in college. It was totally worth it to him, to sacrifice a summer doing nothing but lifeguarding and studying for CLEP exams! 21 credits - bam. And at $100 a class (CLEP exams are $100), plus about $20 a book for study purposes, that's much cheaper than paying normal college tuition.

 

Of note, CLEP takers don't receive a grade, they just get credit for the course (usually it's 3 credits). So it's not affecting the student's college GPA. But doing CLEP exams in high school, before they graduate, looks really good on a transcript, and raises the high school student's GPA.

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I had been just thinking that we would do AP exams mainly for the sake of having something to show academic achievement, like as validation of merit. Like it would just be helpful for college admissions but not necessarily worrying about whether or not they would get college credit. I think I need to research this more!

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I had a meeting Dean in charge of the Honors College at the University of South Carolina last summer. His recommendations were as follows:

 

1. Not all AP/CC classes are created equal. Although you may be able to pass a test, it doesn't ensure proficiency.

2. Use these types of credits for non-major related courses, i.e. if you are going into engineering, a lit credit makes a lot of sense

3. Even if you did well on your AP/Clep etc... take the intro courses in your major. Too many kids struggle because every school's scope and sequence is different. A strong foundation in your major will only help you in the long run.

4. It's not about money it's about the lack of ability of the students coming in to perform at the same level as the students who took the intro course at the college level. There are too many who study to the test and do not have the knowledge needed to succeed in higher level courses.

 

This is what I have heard so many times from college professors and parents of college students. It is not to say those tests aren't necessary for entrance, but don't assume those are intended to replace classes at the University. There is a reason so many Universities are changing their requirements.

 

 

 

So do you think that is still worth it then to just take the exams as a way for a homeschooler to show academic ability for the college admissions process, even if the college they are applying to doesn't give AP credit?

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So do you think that is still worth it then to just take the exams as a way for a homeschooler to show academic ability for the college admissions process, even if the college they are applying to doesn't give AP credit?

 

YES! AP/DE/CLEP all show admissions that a homeschooler has academic ability. It's THE main reason we did them. It's THE main reason my public schooled youngster did them too. (...well, besides simply being ready for that level class in both cases...)

 

The VAST majority of students entering mid to top colleges will have at least a couple of these courses under their belt and some will have many. Even schools like mine that have done away with AP still do DE and some have IB. It's probably not impossible, but it'd be tough to get into one of these colleges without something on the transcript to show admissions that the student is capable of that level work.

 

For mid to lower level colleges, they are not necessary, but I doubt they'd ever hurt an application unless one didn't do reasonably well on the AP test (3+).

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So do you think that is still worth it then to just take the exams as a way for a homeschooler to show academic ability for the college admissions process, even if the college they are applying to doesn't give AP credit?

 

We do AP/SAT 2 and maybe even CLEP for all sorts of reasons. Credit in college is very, very low on the list. See Creekland's post just above.

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So do you think that is still worth it then to just take the exams as a way for a homeschooler to show academic ability for the college admissions process, even if the college they are applying to doesn't give AP credit?

It might be useful to ask an Admissions counselor at colleges you think your student might attend this question.

 

Many brick and mortar kids are taking AP/DE classes. Even if a college is not giving credit for these classes, could not having them place your student at a disadvantage in the admissions process?

 

The thing we found is that colleges want to see students do challenging work. Not everyone has the same opportunities so the key is to find how your student can challenge him or herself.

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Okay, thanks, just wanted to be sure I was still heading in the right direction. I was mostly just looking at doing those AP and SAT II tests as a way for DS to prove being capable of doing a certain level of work. Even without taking a specific AP class anywhere, I was thinking that he could study the topic and prepare for the test on his own, and that would be verification that he studied that material and achieved a certain level of mastery on it.

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Even without taking a specific AP class anywhere, I was thinking that he could study the topic and prepare for the test on his own, and that would be verification that he studied that material and achieved a certain level of mastery on it.

 

This is how my guy did his APs. There was no problem at all and he scored well.

 

SAT IIs also show academic ability. I just didn't include them in my list above as they aren't college credit options. (They can be college placement options at some schools, but I haven't seen college credit granted for them.)

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So do you think that is still worth it then to just take the exams as a way for a homeschooler to show academic ability for the college admissions process, even if the college they are applying to doesn't give AP credit?

(Return has stopped working on the site for me.) Yes. I think that you have a couple different discussions that often get folded into one big bundle. 1) Should a student take validation credit in core majors courses? 2) Will a college grant credit for AP/IB/CLEP? 3) Are AP/CLEP/SAT Subject test results useful for demonstrating the ability of homeschoolers? And off course there are big "it depends" to go along with all of these. Validation credit for a first semester or year of Freshman English courses may put a strong reader/writer into a classroom of other strong readers and writers. But validating out of a year of calculus or chemistry might put a science major behind the curve of his classmates (and also take away the option of a less strenuous high grade). Different colleges grant credit differently. And the receiving college gets to make the policy. There is no rule that binds a college to accept AP scores or CLEP scores or even community college courses. My personal thought on the value of these type exams and class experiences for homeschoolers is that we're already (as homeschoolers) out of the ordinary. The more easy to recognize and categorize pegs I give an admissions officer to recognize that my kids are ready for college and will be assets to that school's community of learners the easier I make it for them to say yes. As it is, my kids won't really have a gpa (other than what I assign) and won't have class rank (they are both top and bottom of their class). So I think it's worth giving them a few outside references. That's why my kids take the AMC math tests and National Latin Exam. That's why SAT scores will be important. That's why SAT 2 and AP exams are something I'm planning on having them take. YMMV.

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I had a meeting Dean in charge of the Honors College at the University of South Carolina last summer. His recommendations were as follows:

 

1. Not all AP/CC classes are created equal. Although you may be able to pass a test, it doesn't ensure proficiency.

2. Use these types of credits for non-major related courses, i.e. if you are going into engineering, a lit credit makes a lot of sense

3. Even if you did well on your AP/Clep etc... take the intro courses in your major. Too many kids struggle because every school's scope and sequence is different. A strong foundation in your major will only help you in the long run.

4. It's not about money it's about the lack of ability of the students coming in to perform at the same level as the students who took the intro course at the college level. There are too many who study to the test and do not have the knowledge needed to succeed in higher level courses.

 

This is what I have heard so many times from college professors and parents of college students. It is not to say those tests aren't necessary for entrance, but don't assume those are intended to replace classes at the University. There is a reason so many Universities are changing their requirements.

So do you think that is still worth it then to just take the exams as a way for a homeschooler to show academic ability for the college admissions process, even if the college they are applying to doesn't give AP credit?

 

I just wanted to point out that our students are individuals and all the posted advice should be viewed in light of those individuals in our home. We all have pretty good ideas about how our children perform......are they struggling to make the grade and having to put in extraordinary amts of time to meet expectations or are they solid in the material and have a grasp of material that demonstrates true mastery.

 

While the initial quote is good, general advice to a large target group, it does not necessarily translate to a real truth across all students. There are students out there that are making 5s on AP exams that have the necessary mastery for the avg university class equivalent and are well-prepared subsequent course work. Those institutions that do not give credit for outside courses/APs, etc do typically allow students to test into appropriate level classes. If not, those institutions typically have honors courses that are specifically targeted to students with these types of high levels of achievement who are grouped together in a specific "type" of freshman course.

 

Also....there are reasons to take AP and DE courses beyond demonstrating anything to admissions. A compelling reason for taking these types of courses is simply meeting student needs academically. If a student is ready for the challenge provided in coursework beyond typical high school level, they should definitely go that route.

 

(ETA: I wanted to clarify that part of my thought processes are based on posts that address not wanting students to take courses "for major" prior to attending the university of their choice after high school graduation. I have a student that would be twiddling his thumbs, or more likely insisting on our just going ahead and graduating him then, if he wasn't allowed to pursue the appropriate level of coursework that matches his real abilities. He is out-performing the university students, so from our perspective there is no valid reason for not allowing him to progress and believe it would be a detriment to him personally to not allow him to take the classes that inspire his enthusiasm for his future.)

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