Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “Learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t live long enough to make them all yourself.”
#1 Passing A CLEP Test Your College Doesn’t Accept
Nothing is more frustrating than investing your time and money, only to discover after passing a CLEP test or two that your college doesn’t actually except it as transfer credit.
Once you have found a CLEP test you’d like to take, make sure the college you attend or plan to attend will accept the transfer credit. You can use the CollegeBoard search tool, but I’d also highly recommend just giving your admissions office a call.
#2 Attempting The Test Before You’re Ready To Pass
Since CLEP tests are essentially the equivalent of just taking the final exam, you really need to make sure you’re ready before you take the test.
I highly recommend waiting until your progress bar reaches 90% (we guarantee you will pass at that point) or at least taking a CLEP practice test from the Official CLEP Study Guide (essentially a set of practice tests – one for each exam). This will help you assess your preparedness for the test.
#3 Studying The Wrong Content
Just because you found a textbook with the same name as the CLEP exam or an online course that claims to prepare you doesn’t mean that the material will actually match the questions on your the CLEP test.
Compare the book chapters or the course sections to the official CLEP breakdowns (look under “Exam Details”).
#4 Overestimating CLEP Difficulty
Maybe you’ve heard of a friend who skipped a couple classes and saved a couple thousand dollars through CLEP testing. Obviously, you’d love to do the same, but you’re worried. Are CLEP tests really possible, or are they only achievable by a near genius?
Thankfully, CLEP tests are actually easily passed by anyone willing to put in the study time and effort. I’ve personally talked with hundreds of CLEP students from high schoolers to adult learners who have successfully passed and earned college credit.
#5 Only Taking One CLEP Test
Many students just take a single CLEP test to earn the credit they need to stay on schedule or to skip a frustrating class, but this is actually a big mistake.
Top students know that they can double or triple their financial and time savings by taking as many CLEP tests as their college will accept. I’ve even heard of some ultra productive students who earned a year’s worth of college credit for less than $700 by using CLEP tests.