You can improve your chances of graduating on time and may even save money on college costs if you earn college credits early. There are several ways to do this. These include testing out of college classes and taking college-level classes while in high school.
Taking college-level classes can help you graduate from college on time or early.
Below are some options for earning credit before starting college.
The College Board’s Advanced Placement Program (AP) offers college-level study in a wide range of subjects and allows you to earn college credit if you score high enough on AP Exams. AP courses stress deep learning, critical thinking and the application of knowledge.
The College Board’s College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) , accepted by over 2,900 colleges and universities, lets you earn college credit for the knowledge that you have already acquired. By passing any of the 33 CLEP exams, you can earn 3 to 12 credits toward your college degree and move to more advanced courses. The amount of credit you earn depends on the exam subject and the policy at the college you attend.
The International Baccalaureate (IB) program offers college-level courses that provide students with an in-depth, culturally diverse, global education. Certain colleges offer credit to students who earn high enough scores on IB exams or who complete the IB diploma program.
Some high school students start their college studies while still in high school by taking day, evening or weekend classes at a local college. The rules for who can go and who pays the tuition are different in every state.
Taking college-level classes in high school can introduce you to new academic passions and the excitement of exploring interesting subjects in depth. It can also help you:
Talk to your school counselor, principal or teachers to find out which options for earning college credit may work for you. And make sure that the colleges you want to attend will accept your credits.