College-Level Examination Program
(CLEP) Testing

Allison C. Class of 2018

What Is CLEP?

The College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) offers you the opportunity to receive college credit for what you already know by earning qualifying scores on any of the 33 CLEP examinations. All exams give you instant candidate score reports (except for College Composition), year-round testing, and no penalty for guessing. Whether you’re a new or a returning student, CLEP tests can help you:

  • Earn 4.5 or more college credits for each passing test
  • Save tuition dollars
  • Earn your degree on time (or early)
  • Add flexibility to your degree program

Who Can Earn College Credits with CLEP?

  • Active-duty military service members, veterans, and dependents
  • Traditional and returning college students
  • Native speakers looking to fulfill their language requirements
  • Applicants for master’s degree programs looking to fulfill undergraduate prerequisites
  • Students who need lower division credits or open elective units

Where and When Can I Take My CLEP Test?

CLEP testing is available at many NU locations as well as thousands of other institutions and testing centers. To locate the closest testing location, you can visit the College Board CLEP Testing Center Search tool. Students without military base access will search for “open” test centers and those with access can also choose from “limited” centers.

Which Exam Should I Take?

Students can consult their Academic Advisement Report (AAR) in their Student Portal to see a list of the classes or areas that they need to fulfill in order to earn their degree. Remember that CLEP will only grant units for lower division, 100-200 level classes.  Students can go to https://clep.collegeboard.org/exams to read a detailed description of the test.

How Do I Purchase a Test?

Purchase exams 24/7 through the My Account registration portal. At this site, you can also search for test centers and choose an institution to receive your test score(s). You will receive a registration ticket when you have finished, and make sure to bring this ticket with you on the day of your test.

What Is the Cost?

All CLEP tests cost $89 (not including testing center/proctor fees). Students and non-NU students are eligible to test at any of our approved CLEP testing locations listed above; please confirm testing/proctor fees with the center staff while scheduling.

If you are a military serviceperson, an eligible spouse, or a civil service employee, you may be eligible for DANTES funded testing (see eligibility chart). Additionally, if you are a veteran eligible for VA education benefits, you can likely be reimbursed for CLEP testing. Please review the College Board Military Benefits information webpage and Veteran Benefits Administration reimbursement form for this option.

When Will I Find Out My Test Results?

The tests (except for the College Composition test) are automatically graded so you will instantly know if you passed. Test results are generally sent 2-3 weeks AFTER the date of the test to our Records Dept for processing. The College Composition CLEP usually requires 3-4 weeks for processing.

How Do I Study For a Test?

The CLEP website here has free downloadable fact sheets for each of the 33 tests, a breakdown of the exam content and 5-10 sample questions per test. See testingservices@nu.edu for other resources and for complimentary study materials.

How Are the Tests Scored and Are Retakes Allowed?

National University goes by the ACE recommended score of 50 or higher as passing for CLEP tests. The minimum is 20 and the maximum is 80. A score of 50 is comparable to earning a “C” grade on a test which would be considered passing. CLEP tests are pass/fail and do not affect student’s GPAs. Students can retake the CLEP test as many times as necessary but must wait 90 days before retaking the same test and must pay for a registration ticket each time.

How Many CLEP Tests Am I Allowed to Take?

National University students cannot exceed 67.5 quarter units towards a bachelor’s degree.

How Do I Know What Course (or Courses) the CLEP Test Will Waive?

National University students: Please see the search feature on our homepage for help choosing the right test for you. You can always contact your advisor for information regarding your program plan.

Non-National University students: Please see your school’s catalog or your school’s testing center for a list of the tests, score needed, units and courses that each test will waive.