Adults entering or returning to college bring with them a wealth of learning experiences that Boise State University recognizes as important to the total University experience. In recognition of the value of these experiences, Boise State provides students with several opportunities to receive undergraduate credit for the knowledge gained through non-college experiences.
Achievements can be evaluated by completing standardized tests, challenging courses or completing a prior learning portfolio. Boise State University does not award credit for experience alone. Credit for prior learning is awarded for verifiable skills and learning gained through the experience.
Prior Learning, sometimes called “experiential learning” is knowledge that is obtained outside the university setting prior to entering or returning to college. This nontraditional learning is generally acquired through work experience, travel, workshop or conference participation, advanced high school courses, volunteer work, in-service training, adult or continuing education, recreational activities or hobbies, self initiated reading and study, and involvement in professional organizations. Credit may be awarded for verifiable learning gained through experience – not for the experience itself.
Students may earn up to one-third of their total credits required for graduation in a combination of all forms of experiential learning (portfolio, challenge, CLEP credit, AP credit, Credit for prerequisites not taken, ACE Guide credit, etc.) No more than one quarter may be earned in portfolio credit. Credits earned through any form of experiential learning will not count toward the graduation residency requirement.
In compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Boise State University provides accessibility to academic programs to the greatest extent possible. If students have access needs that may require special accommodations, please call the Disability Resource Center office 426-1583, or TTY# (208) 426-1454. Call at least two weeks in advance to ensure that access needs can be met.
Advanced Placement Exams are administered primarily in the high schools. They are usually culminating exams for high school students enrolled in honors courses. Students must score a 3, 4, or 5 on the exam to receive college-level credit. Listed below are the specific departmental credits available at Boise State for acceptable AP exam scores. Credit for AP exams will be recorded on the BSU transcript, with a grade of “Pass,” when the student is currently enrolled at Boise State University. AP exams cannot be used to repeat a class already completed.
Advanced Placement Examinations
|AP Exam Title||Score for credit||BSU Equivalent Course & Number of Credits|
|Art History||4||ARTHIST 102 Survey of Western Art II (3) DLV|
|Biology||3||BIOL 100 Concepts of Biology (4 ) DLN|
|Biology||4||BIOL 191 General Biology I (4) DLN|
|Chemistry *||4, 5||CHEM 100XF (4) – Dept. approval requiredCHEM 111, 111L (4) DLN – Dept. approval required|
|Chinese, French, German, Japanese, or Spanish||3||101-102 First two semesters (8) DLL|
|Chinese, French, German,Japanese, or Spanish||4||101-201 First three semesters DLL|
|Chinese, French, German, Japanese, or Spanish||5||101-202 First four semesters DLL|
|Comparative Government and Politics||3||POLS 100XF (3)|
|Computer Science A||4||COMPSCI 121 Intro to Computer Science (4)|
|English Language & Composition||3, 4||ENGL 101 Introduction to College Writing(3)|
|English Language & Composition||5||ENGL 101-102 Introduction to College Writing & Research(6)|
|Environmental Science||3||GENSCI 100XF (4)|
|European History||4||HIST102 Western Civilization (3) DLS|
|Human Geography||3||GEOG 102 Cultural Geography (3)|
|Italian Language & Culture||3||FORLNG 197 (8)|
|Italian Language & Culture||4, 5||FORLNG 297 (4)|
|Latin: Vergil||3||LATIN 100XF (3)|
|Latin: Vergil||4||LATIN 211|
|Latin: Vergil||5||LATIN 212|
|Macroeconomics||4||ECON 201 Prin Macroeconomics (3) DLS|
|Microeconomics||4||ECON 202 Prin Microeconomics (3) DLS|
|Mathematics: Calculus AB||3||MATH 170 Calculus (4) DLM|
|Mathematics: Calculus BC||3||MATH 170 Calculus I, 175 Calculus II (8) DLM|
|Music: Theory||3||MUS 100XF (6)|
|Physics B||3||PHYS111 General Physics (4) DLN|
|Physics C/Mechanics||3||PHYS 211/211L (5)|
|Physics C/E&M||4||PHYS 212/212L (5)|
|Psychology||3||PSYC 101 General Psychology (3) DLS|
|Spanish Literature||3||SPAN 300XF|
|Spanish Literature||4, 5||SPANISH 304 (3) Introduction to Hispanic Literature|
|Statistics||3||MATH 254 Appl Statistics w/Computers (3) DLM|
|United States Government & Politics||3||POLS 101 American National Govt (3) DLS|
|Studio Art||3||ART 100XF (3)|
|United States History||3||HIST 111, HIST112 U.S. History (6)|
|World History||3||HIST 100 Themes in World History (3) DLL|
|*Approval from the Chemistry Department is required.|
AP transcripts are sent to Boise State by the Educational Testing Service during the summer. If students have taken an AP exam but did not designate BSU as a recipient, an AP transcript may be requested by writing:
- AP Program
- PO Box 6671
- Princeton, NJ 08541-6671
- (609) 771-7300 (phone)
- (609) 530-0482 (fax) firstname.lastname@example.org (e-mail)
When ordering a transcript the following information must be included: name, date of birth, current address, daytime phone number, social security number, year test was taken, school where test was taken, name of test, where to send transcript, and BSU Code #4018. Each transcript costs $12.00, or $19.00 if ordered by phone (prices may be subject to change).
The IBO’s Diploma Program (DP) is a demanding course of study that leads to culminating exams for highly motivated high school students. Only High Level (HL) exams will receive college-level credit at Boise State University. A minimum score of 4 is required to receive credit.
Listed below are the specific departmental credits available at Boise State for acceptable IB exam scores. Credit for IB exams not listed will be granted on the recommendations of the chairman of the Department offering the course. Credit for IB exams will be recorded on the BSU transcript, with a grade of “Pass,” when the student is currently enrolled at Boise State University. IB exams cannot be used to repeat a class already completed.
|IB Exam Title||Minimum Score for Credit||BSU Equivalent Course & Number of Credits||Disciplinary Lens|
|Visual Art||4||ART 100XFV (3)||DLV|
|BIOL 100 (4)
BIOL 191 (4)
BIOL 191 & 192 (8)
|Business & Management||4||MGMT 301, 334 & 410 (9)|
|Computer Science||4||COMPSCI 119 (3)|
|Economics||5||ECON 201 & 202 (6)||DLS|
|English A||4||DLL Literature course (3)||DLL|
|GEOG 102 (3)
GEOG 100 & 102 (6)
|American History||4||HIST 111 & 112 (6)|
|World /European History||4||HIST 101, 102 & 121 (9)||DLL, DLS|
|Foreign Language A2 & B||4
101 & 102 (8)
101, 102 & 201 (12)
101, 102, 201 & 202 (16)
|MATH 147 (5)
MATH 147 & Math 170 (9)
|Music||4||MUS 101 (3)
General Elective Music Credits (3)
|Physics||5||PHYS 111 & 112 (8)||DLN|
|Psychology||5||PSYC 101 (3)||DLS|
|Philosophy||5||PHIL 101 (3)||DLL|
|Social & Cultural Anthropology||5
|ANTH 102 (3)
ANTH 215 (3)
An IB transcript may be requested by contacting:
- IBO North America
- 475 Riverside Drive, 16th Floor
- New York, NY 10115
- (212) 696-4464 (phone)
- (212) 889-9242 (fax) email@example.com (e-mail)
IB graduates before 2005 need to make their transcript request via regular mail. When ordering a transcript the following information must be included: name as it appeared on IB diploma, date of birth, name of high school where test was taken, current address, daytime phone number, year and month exam was taken and university address to send transcripts to. There is a $10 cost per transcript request. (Prices may be subject to change).
College Level Examination Program (CLEP) exams include a variety of subject areas. The Reserve Desk in the Boise State library has the following study guides:
- Preparation for the CLEP (LB2353.68.P741995)
- Cracking The CLEP (LB2353.68.C731997)
All credit for CLEP tests is granted based on the score recommended by the American Council on Education (ACE). The CLEP tests are given in Room 115 of the Academic Career Services Building at 1464 University Drive. For the times and cost of the test call 426-2762. An appointment must be made to take the test. It takes 2 to 3 weeks for the test results to be sent to the Registrar’s Office. Credit for CLEP exams will be recorded on the BSU transcript, with a grade of “Pass,” when the student is currently enrolled at Boise State University. CLEP tests cannot be used to repeat a class already completed. If the score is too low, no entry is made on the transcript. According to CLEP policy, the test can be retaken in 6 months. For CLEP exams that have already been taken, a transcript can be requested by writing:
- CLEP Transcript Request Service
- P.O. Box 6600
- Princeton NJ 08541-6600
- (609) 771-7865 (phone)
- (609) 771-7088 (fax) firstname.lastname@example.org (e-mail)
When ordering transcripts the following information must be included: name, social security number, month and year test was taken, city where test was taken, name of test taken, where to send transcript, and BSU Code #4018. Each transcript costs $20.00 (prices subject to change).
These exams are designed to test knowledge in specific college subjects, and can fulfill major requirements as well as Disciplinary Lens requirements (see the BSU catalog for a list of Disciplinary Lens Courses). The score needed to receive credit has been determined by ACE.
|CLEP Exam Title||Score for Credit (for exams taken prior to July 1, 2001)||BSU Equivalent Course
& Number of Credits
|Accounting, Principles of||50 (47)||ACCT205- Intro to Financial Accounting (3)
ACCT206 -Intro to Managerial Accounting (3)
|American Government||50 (47)||POLS101-American National Government (3)||DLS|
|American History I||50 (45)||HIST111-U.S. History (3)|
|American History II||50 (45)||HIST112-U.S. History (3)|
|American Literature||50||ENGL 100XF (6)|
|Analy & Interp Literature||50||ENGL 100XF (6)|
|Biology||50 (46)||Biology Elective (3)||+|
|Calculus||50 (41)||MATH170 Calculus I (4)||DLM|
|College Algebra||50 (46)||MATH143-College Algebra (3)||DLM|
|College Algebra/Trigonometry||50 (45)||MATH147-Precalculus (5)||DLM|
|College Mathematics||50 (420)||Disciplinary Lens Mathematics (6)||DLM|
|Educational Psychology||50 (47)||ED-CIFS203 – Educational Psychology(3)|
|English Literature||50||ENGL 100XF (6)|
|Financial Accounting||50 (50)||ACCT 205 (3) Introduction to Financial Accounting|
|French 101/102 Elementary French (8)
French 101/203 Intermediate French(14)
|GERM 101/102 Elementary German (8)
GERM 101/203 Intermediate German (14)
|Human Growth & Development||50||PSYC 100XF (3)|
|Humanities||50 (420)||Disciplinary Lens Humanities (6)||DLL|
|Intro Business Law||50||GENBUS 100XF (3)|
|50 (44)||ECON201 – Principles of Macroeconomics (3)||DLS|
|50 (41)||ECON202 – Principles of Microeconomics (3)||DLS|
|Management, Principles of||50 (46)||MGMT 100XF (3)|
|Marketing, Principles of||50 (50)||MKTG301 – Principles of Marketing (3)|
|Natural Sciences||50 (420)||Disciplinary Lens Biology (3)
Disciplinary Lens Physical Science (3)
|Psychology, Introductory||50 (47)||PSYC101-General Psychology (3)||DLS|
|Social Science & History||50 (420)||Disciplinary Lens History (3)
Disciplinary Lens Social Science (3)
|Sociology, Introductory||50 (47)||SOC101 – Intro to Sociology (3)||DLS|
|SPAN101/102 Elementary Spanish (8)
SPAN201/202 Intermediate Spanish (8)
|Trigonometry||50 (50)||MATH144-Analytic Trigonometry (2)||DLM|
|Western Civilization I||50 (46)||HIST101- History of Western Civilization (3)||DLL|
|Western Civilization II||50 (47)||HIST102 – History of Western Civilization (3)||DLS|
| +Disciplinary Lens credit will be given only if the student completes a BIOL lab
*Disciplinary Lens Natural Science without lab
**Cannot be used to fulfill ENGL 101-102 requirement
Students who have completed a training program listed in one of the following publications can submit course completion certificates or exam scores and receive general elective credit based on the recommendations of these guides:
- 1. THE NATIONAL GUIDE TO EDUCATION CREDIT FOR TRAINING PROGRAMS by the American Council on Education
- 2. A GUIDE TO EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS IN NONCOLLEGIATE ORGANIZATIONS by The University of the State of New York
- 3. GUIDE TO EDUCATIONAL CREDIT BY EXAMINATION by the American Council on Education
- 4. GUIDE TO THE EVALUATION OF EDUCATIONAL EXPERIENCES IN THE ARMED SERVICES by the American Council on Education
Credit for ACE programs will be recorded on the BSU transcript, with a grade of “Pass,” when the student is currently enrolled at Boise State University. Students may request to obtain specific departmental credit rather than general elective credit by appealing to the appropriate academic department chair. This credit would be approved using an Adjustment of Academic form.
The nationally recognized DSST Program allows students to receive college credits for learning acquired outside the traditional classroom. Listed below are the specific departmental credits available at Boise State for acceptable DSST exam scores. Credit for DSST exams will be recorded on the BSU transcript, with a grade of “Pass”, when the student is currently enrolled at Boise State University. DSST exams cannot be used to repeat a class already completed.
|DSST Exam Title||Minimum Score||BSU Equivalent Course & Number of Credits|
|A History of the Vietnam War||49||HIST 100XF (3)|
|An Intro to the Modern Middle East||44||HIST 100XF (3)|
|Art of the Western World||49||ARTHIST 102 (3)|
|Astronomy||48||PHYS 104 (4)|
|Civil War & Reconstruction||47||HIST 334|
|Environment & Humanity||46||GENSCI 100XF (3)|
|Ethics in America||46||PHIL 103 (3)|
|Foundations of Education||46||ED-CIFS 201 (3)|
|General Anthropology||47||ANTH 100XF (3)|
|Here’s to Your Health||400/48||HLTHST 300XF (3)|
|Human/Cultural Geography||48||GEOG 102 (3)|
|Intro Business||46/400||GENBUS 101 (3)|
|Fund College Algebra||47/400||MATH 108 (4)|
|Fund Counseling||48||PSYC 357 (3)|
|Money & Banking||48||FIN 300XF (3)|
|Organizational Behavior||48||MGMT 401 (3)|
|Personal Finance||400/46||FIN 208 (3)|
|Pers/Hum Res Mgmt||46||HRM 305 (3)|
|Physical Geology||46||GENSCI 100XF (3)|
|Principles of Financial Accounting||49||ACCT 208 (3)|
|Principles of Physical Science||48||PHYS 104 (4)|
|Principles of Statistics||48||MATH 254 (3)|
|Rise & Fall of the Soviet Union||45||HIST 300XF (3)|
|Substance Abuse||400/49||HLTHST 300XF (3)|
|Western Europe Since 1945||48||HIST 100XF (3)|
A DSST transcript may be requested online. The cost is $30. per transcript (prices subject to change).
Excelsior College Examinations are designed to test achievement in specific college subjects. Credit for Excelsior exams will be recorded on the BSU transcript, with a grade of “Pass,” when the student is currently enrolled at Boise State University. Excelsior exams cannot be used to repeat a class already completed.
|Excelsior Exam Title||Grade for Credit||BSU Equivalent Course & Number of Credits|
|Bioethics: Philosophical Issues||C||HLTHST 300XF (3)|
|Earth Science||C||GEOS 100XF (3)|
|Ethics: Theory & Practice||C||PHIL 103 (3)|
|Human Resource Mgmt||B||HRM 305 Human Resource Management (3)|
|Intro to Philosophy||C||PHIL 101 (3)|
|Literacy Instruction in the Elementary School||C||ED-LTCY 440 (3)|
|Organizational Behavior||C||MGMT 401 (3)|
|Astrophysical||C||HLTHST 300XF (3)|
|Statistics||C||MATH 254 (3)|
|World Conflicts Since 1900||C||HIST 300XF (3)|
ACE has evaluated many courses and schools completed within military service. Boise State follows the credit recommendation of ACE found in the Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services to award academic credit for these courses and schools. Credit for military training will be recorded on the BSU transcript when the student is currently enrolled at Boise State University. These credits are general elective “Pass” credits only and can not be used to meet CORE requirements. They can be used to fulfill major requirements only if approved by the academic department chair and the appropriate dean. Procedures for receiving this credit vary depending on the branch of the service you were in. See below for details:
AIR FORCE – Students need to order an official transcript from the Community College of the Air Force to be sent to Boise State University. Their credits will be evaluated from that transcript. Order transcript online at http://www.au.af.mil/au/ccaf/transcripts.asp#trans or from:
- Community College of the Air Force
- Building 836
- Maxwell AFB AL 36112-6655
- Phone # (334) 953-5033
- Fax # (334) 953-5231
ARMY – Students who are or have been enlisted, need to submit an online request at https://jst.doded.mil/smart/signIn.do to send Boise State University an AARTS (Army/American Council on Education Registry Transcript).
NAVY – MARINES – Students who are or have been enlisted, need to submit an online request at https://jst.doded.mil/smart/signIn.do to send Boise State University a SMART (Sailor/Marine American Council on Education Registry Transcript).
COAST GUARD – Students who are or have been enlisted, need to submit an online request at https://jst.doded.mil/smart/signIn.do to send Boise State University a SMART (Sailor/Marine American Council on Education Registry Transcript).
Credit For Prerequisites Not Taken
A prerequisite is a course (or courses) that students must have successfully completed before they can enroll in another course. For instance, before students can enroll is SPAN102 Elementary Spanish, they must first have completed SPAN101 Elementary Spanish. If a course has a prerequisite, the prerequisite is listed in the BSU Catalog, Chapter 13 “Academic Departments and Course Descriptions” or in the BSU Directory of Classes. Depending on background or experience, students may be allowed to take some courses without first taking a prerequisite course. In some cases, they may also be able to receive credit for the prerequisite course. To take a course without first taking the prerequisite, students must obtain the approval of the appropriate academic department chair. If students receive approval and earn a grade of C or higher in the advanced course, they may request credit for selected prerequisite courses. To request credit for prerequisites not taken, they must complete a Credit for Prior Learning form. Department chairs and deans determine which courses can qualify for this credit. Departments may also require that students take an examination covering the content of the prerequisite. A $20 per course fee is charged for credit for prerequisite not taken. Students must be currently enrolled at Boise State to apply for prior learning credits. The Registrar will transcript credits awarded through prior learning after a student has successfully completed 12 credit hours at Boise State University.
If students feel their background, education, and experience have given them sufficient knowledge in a subject area, they may challenge certain courses. That is, they may be able to receive credit for the course by passing a challenge exam. Each department selects which courses are available for challenge and may develop screening procedures to determine if students are eligible to take the challenge exam. For departmentally prepared exams, the department determines the grading. Grades may be recorded as either Pass/Fail or a letter grade (A, B, C, D, or F). Before students take the exam, the department will tell them what type of grading is available. Students may not withdraw from a challenge after they have taken the exam, unless the department specifically authorizes the withdrawal. To receive credit students must complete the Credit for Prior Learning form. A $20 or $50 per course fee is charged for challenges. Students must be currently enrolled at Boise State to apply for prior learning credits. The Registrar will transcript credits awarded through prior learning after a student has successfully completed 12 credit hours at Boise State University.
Prior Learning Portfolio
If students can answer yes to all of the following questions, they may be a good candidate for prior learning assessment:
- Have you completed fewer than three years of college?
- Do you have strong writing skills?
- Have you learned material comparable to college course work, perhaps through work experience, in-service training, personal study, community involvement, military training & experience, recreational activities, artistic pursuits, or travel?
- Can you provide documented proof of activities & learning outcomes?
Prior learning, sometimes called “experiential learning” is knowledge that is obtained through non-college experiences prior to entering or returning to college. This non-traditional learning is generally acquired through work experience, travel, military experience, noncredit workshops or training, volunteer work, self initiated reading and study and/or involvement in professional organizations. Credit for prior learning is awarded for the knowledge and skills gained through experience – not for the experience itself. This knowledge must be assessed as college-level learning by the appropriate academic department. Each academic department determines whether or not portfolios will be considered for academic credit. The relevant department should be contacted before a portfolio is prepared. Completed portfolios are then assessed by faculty of individual departments who will have the option of allowing or not allowing credit within their department. The fee for having the portfolio assessed is $75.00. Portfolio credits are not transferable to other institutions, nor does Boise State accept portfolio credits granted elsewhere. Students must be currently enrolled at Boise State to apply for prior learning credits. The Registrar will transcript credits awarded through prior learning after a student has successfully completed 12 credit hours at Boise State University.
For More Information
|Administration Building, Room 110|
|Administration Building, Room 110|
|Testing Services, Academic Career Services Building||426-2762|
|1464 University Drive, Room 115|
|220 E. Parkcenter Blvd.|
|Student Union Building|
|Toll free in Idaho – 1-800-632-6586 or 1-800-824-7017|
|Mon-Fri 8:00-5:00 p.m.|
These guidelines were updated November, 2010.