Save Money on College Tip Three: Place Out of Courses and Move Up

Barry Lenson

How to Place Out of College CoursesToday’s post is the third in a series of short tips on how to save money on college.

Today’s tip is . . .

Place Out of Courses and Move Up to the Next Level

Do you want to save money on college and graduate sooner? Here’s a powerfully simple strategy for you. Place out of courses and move up.

Most savvy college students know that it is possible to place out of college courses by taking AP or CLEP exams.  But there is another way to place out of college courses too and possibly graduate faster. It is to get exempted from courses after you are already attending a college. Here are a few strategies that have been shown to work . . .

  • Start taking a course, then tell your professor that it is too easy and ask to move up to a more advanced class level. If you start taking a language course and find it too easy, for example, you can ask to move up. You can use the same strategy to place out of classes in math, history, science, or other areas.
  • You can also ask your advisor or the school’s registrar whether you can place out of any required courses.  If you grew up speaking a second language in your home, for example, you might be able to fulfill your college’s language requirement without taking any language classes.  If you learned skills in the military or on a job, they might equip you to place out of classes too, even though you might have to take an exam (such as the final exam that is given in a class) to prove that you already know what you need to in order to place out.
  • Take online courses at StraighterLine and then place out of the same courses in your regular college. You could take Calculus or a laboratory science, for example, and use the knowledge that you gained to place out of the course. (Again, you might need to take an exam to demonstrate your knowledge.) There is an even simpler approach too, which is to take StraighterLine courses and transfer the credits you earned to your college.

One Caution . . .

Remember that placing out of a course will not necessarily earn you the same credits that you would have earned it you had taken it. So remember that even though you are getting exempted from taking some courses, you still need to earn enough total credits to satisfy your college’s graduation requirements.

Related Posts
Save Money on College Tip Two: Go to a Three-Year College
Save Money on College Tip One: Take More Courses during Every Semester You Are in School
Why Is College so Expensive?

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