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.
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.
If a student is currently enrolled at Boise State, test credit is entered when it is received by the Registrar’s Office. If the student has never attended, test credit is entered after the 10th day of classes of their first semester.
Credit for Prior Learning Limitations
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.
- AP—Advanced Placement
- CLEP—College Level Examination Program
- ENGL 101 and ENGL 102
- IB—International Baccalaureate
Advanced Placement (AP) Examinationshttp://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/ap/about.html
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. These scores can fulfill major requirements as well as University Foundations Program course requirements (see the Boise State University catalog for a list of University Foundations Program courses). Credit for AP exams will be recorded on the Boise State transcript, with a grade of "Pass," after the 10th day of the student's first term enrolled at Boise State University. AP exams cannot be used to repeat a class previously graded.
AP transcripts are sent to Boise State by the Educational Testing Service. If students have taken an AP exam but did not designate Boise State as a recipient, an AP transcript may be requested by contacting:
- Phone: (212) 632-1780
- FAX: (610) 290-8979
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- The Advanced Placement exam code for Boise State University is 4018.
AP Exam Minimum Score Boise State Equivalent
(As of 1/1/18)
Credit Foundational Studies Designation Art History 3 ART 100 3 FA Art Studio: 2D, 3D or Drawing 3 ART 100XF 3 Biology 3 BIOL 100XFN, 100XF 8 FN (BIOL 100XFN) Biology 4 BIOL 191, 100XFN 8 FN Biology 5 BIOL 191, 192 8 FN (BIOL 191) Calculus AB 3 MATH 170 4 FM Calculus BC 3 MATH 170, 175 8 FM (MATH 170) Calculus AB Subscore (CABS) Not accepted 0 Chemistry 3
CHEM 101, 100XF [note] 4 Chemistry 4 CHEM 111, 100XF [note] 4 FN (CHEM 111) Chinese, French, German, Japanese, or Spanish Language and Culture 3 101, 102 8 FH Chinese, French, German, Japanese, or Spanish Language and Culture 4 101, 102, 201 11 or 12 FH Chinese, French, German, Japanese, or Spanish Language and Culture 5 101, 102, 201, 202 14 or 16 FH Comparative Government and Politics 3 POLS 100XF 3 Computer Science A 3 CS 121 4 Computer Science Principles 3 CS 101 3 English Language and Composition 3, 4 ENGL 101 3 College First-Year Writing English Language and Composition 5 ENGL 101, 102 6 College First-Year Writing English Literature and Composition 3, 4 ENGL 110 [note] 3 FH English Literature and Composition 5 ENGL 110 [note], 100XF 6 FH (ENGL 110)[note] Environmental Science 3 ENVSTD 121 4 [note] FN European History 3 HIST 102 3 FH Human Geography 3 GEOG 102 3 FS Italian Language and Culture 3 FORLNG 100XFL 8 FH Italian Language and Culture 4 FORLNG 100XFL, 200XFL 12 FH Italian Language and Culture 5 FORLNG 100XFL, 200XFL 16 FH Latin 3 LATIN 100XF 3 Latin 4 LATIN 211 4 FH Latin 5 LATIN 212 4 FH Macroeconomics 3 ECON 201 3 FS Microeconomics 3 ECON 202 3 FS Music: Theory 3 MUS 100XF 3 Physics 1 3 PHYS 111 4 FN Physics 2 3 PHYS 100XF 4 Physics 2 4 PHYS 112 4 FN Physics B 3 PHYS 111 4 FN Physics C/Electricity and Magnetism 3 PHYS 100XF 5 Physics C/Electricity and Magnetism 4 PHYS 212, 212L 5 Physics C/Mechanics 3 PHYS 211, 211L 5 FN Psychology 3 PSYC 101 3 FS Research 3 GENED 100XF
3 Seminar 3 GENED 100XF
3 Research and Seminar [note] 3 UF 100, GENED 100XF
6 UF Spanish Literature 3, 4 SPANISH 300XF 3 Spanish Literature 5 SPANISH 304 3 Statistics 3 MATH 254 3 FM United States Government and Politics 3 POLS 101 3 FS United States History 3 HIST 111, 112 6 FS World History 3 HIST 100 3 FH
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 Boise State transcript, with a grade of Pass (P), after the 10th day of the student's first term enrolled at Boise State University. CLEP tests cannot be used to repeat a class previously graded. If the score is too low, no entry is made on the transcript. According to CLEP policy, the test can be retaken in 3 months.
These exams are designed to test knowledge in specific college subjects. These scores can fulfill major requirements as well as University Foundations Program course requirements (see the Boise State University catalog for a list of University Foundations Program courses).
For CLEP exams that have already been taken, a transcript can be requested by writing:
- Address: CLEP Transcript Request Service, P.O. Box 6600, Princeton NJ 08541-6600
- Email: email@example.com
- Phone: (212) 237-1331 or (800) 257-9558
- FAX: (610) 628-3726
- The CLEP code for Boise State University is 4018.
CLEP Exam Minimum Score Boise State Equivalent
(As of 1/1/18)
Credits Foundational Studies Designation American Government 50 POLS 101 3 FS American Literature 50 ENGL 277 3* Analyzing and Interpreting Literature 50 ENGL 110[note] 3* FH Biology 50 BIOL 191 [note] 3 FN Calculus 50 MATH 170 4 FM College Algebra 50 MATH 143 3 FM College Mathematics 50 MATH 123 3 FM College Composition 50 ENGL 100XF 6 College Composition Modular - Not Accepted - - English Literature 50 ENGL 267 3* Financial Accounting 50 ACCT 205 3 French Language,
50 101, 102 8 FH French Language,
59 101, 102, 201 11** FH German Language,
50 101, 102 8 FH German Language,
60 101, 102, 201 11** FH History of the United States I: Early Colonization to 1877 50 HIST 111 3 FS History of the United States II: 1865 to the Present 50 HIST 112 3 FS Human Growth and Development 50 PSYC 309 3 Humanities 50 HUM 207 3* FH Information Systems 50 ITM 310 3 Introduction to Educational Psychology 50 ED-CIFS 203 3 Introductory Business Law 50 BUS 202 3 Introductory Psychology 50 PSYC 101 3 FS (PSYC 101) Introductory Sociology 50 SOC 101 3 FS Natural Sciences 50 BIOL 100XFN, PHYS 100XFN 6 FN Precalculus 50 MATH 143, 144 5 FM (MATH 143) Principles of Macroeconomics 50 ECON 201 3 FS Principles of Management 50 MGMT 100XF 3 Principles of Marketing 50 MKTG 301 3 Principles of Microeconomics 50 ECON 202 3 FS Social Science and History 50 HIST 102, SOC 100XFS 6 FS Spanish Language,
50 SPANISH 101, 102 8 FH Spanish Language,
63 SPANISH 101, 102, 201 12** FH Western Civilization I: Ancient Near East to 1648 50 HIST 101 3 FH Western Civilization II: 1648 to the Present 50 HIST 102 3 FH * tests taken prior to 09/01/2016 are worth 6 credits ** tests taken prior to 09/01/2016 are worth 4 courses (101, 102, 201, 202) and 14 to 16 credits
ENGL 101 and ENGL 102 Placement Scores
Courses Accepted Exams (As of 1/1/18) ENGL 101 and ENGL 102 AP Language and Composition score of 5; or ACT English score of 31 or higher; or SAT Reading score of 37 or higher.
submit it to the Registrar’s Office.
DSST/Prometric ExaminationsThe 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 Boise State transcript, with a grade of Pass (P), after the 10th day of the student’s first term enrolled at Boise State University. DSST exams cannot be used to repeat a class previously graded. If the score is too low, no entry is made on the transcript
A DSST transcript may be requested online. www.getcollegecredit.com.
DSST Exam Minimum Score Boise State Equivalent
(As of 1/1/18)
Credits Foundational Studies Designation A History of the Vietnam War 400 HIST 100XF 3 Art of the Western World 434 ART 100 3 FA Astronomy 400 PHYS 104 4 FN Business Ethics and Society 400 GENBUS 360 3 Business Math 400 GENBUS 100XF 3 Criminal Justice 425 CJ 101 3 Environment and Humanity: The Race to Save the Planet 400 GENSCI 100XF 3 Ethics in America 400 PHIL 103 3 FH Fundamentals of College Algebra 400 MATH 108 3 Fundamentals of Counseling 400 PSYC 357 3 Fundamentals of Cybersecurity 400 CS 100XF 3 General Anthropology 400 ANTH 100XF 3 Health and Human Development 400 HLTHST 100XF 3 History of the Soviet Union 400 POLS 422 3 Human Resource Management 400 HRM 305 3 Human/Cultural Geography 400 GEOG 102 3 FS Introduction to Business 400 GENBUS 101 3 Introduction to Computing 400 CS 100XF 3 Introduction to Law Enforcement 425 POLS 100XF 3 Introduction to World Religions 400 HUM 100XF 3 Lifespan Developmental Psychology 400 PSYC 309 3 Management Information Systems 400 CS 100XF 3 Math for Liberal Arts 400 MATH 123 3 FM Money and Banking 400 FINAN 300XF 3 Organizational Behavior 400 MGMT 401 3 Personal Finance 400 FINAN 208 3 Principles of Finance 400 FINAN 200XF 3 Principles of Physical Science 400 PHYS 101 4 FN Principles of Public Speaking 400 COMM 200XF 3 Principles of Statistics 400 MATH 254 3 FM Substance Abuse 400 HLTHST 300XF 3 Technical Writing 400 ENGL 202 3 FS The Civil War and Reconstruction 400 HIST 334 3
Boise State University awards credits for select Excelsior College Examinations, which are designed to test achievement in specific college area. Credit for Excelsior exams will be recorded on the Boise State transcript, with a grade of Pass (P), after the 10th day of the student's first term enrolled at Boise State University. Excelsior exams cannot be used to repeat a class previously graded.
Excelsior Exam Minimum Grade Boise State Equivalent
(As of 1/1/18)
Credit Foundational Studies Designation Abnormal Psychology C PSYC 301 3 Anatomy and Physiology C BIOL 227, 228 8 FN (BIOL 227) Anatomy and Physiology I C BIOL 227 4 FN Anatomy and Physiology II C BIOL 228 4 Basic Genetics C BIOL 200XF 3 Bioethics: Philosophical Issues C HLTHST 300XF 3 Calculus C MATH 100XFM 4 FM Contemporary Mathematics C MATH 100XFM 3 FM Cultural Diversity C ANTH 300XF 3 Earth Science C GEOS 100XF 3 Ethics: Theory and Practice C PHIL 103 3 FH Financial Accounting B ACCT 205 3 Human Resource Management C HRM 305 3 Interpersonal Communication C COMM 200XF 3 Introduction to Computer Programming using Java C CS 100XF 3 Introduction to Cybersecurity C CS 100XF 3 Introduction to Macroeconomics B ECON 201 3 FS Introduction to Microeconomics B ECON 202 3 FS Introduction to Music C MUS 100 3 FA Introduction to Philosophy C PHIL 101 3 FH Introduction to Psychology C PSYC 101 3 FS Introduction to Sociology C SOC 101 3 FS Juvenile Delinquency C SOC 415 3 Life Span Developmental Psychology C PSYC 309 3 Managerial Accounting B ACCT 206 3 Microbiology C BIOL 200XF 3 Organizational Behavior C MGMT 401 3 Pathophysiology C HLTHST 300XF 3 Political Science C POLS 200 3 Principles of Finance C FINAN 200XF 3 Principles of Marketing C MKTG 200XF 3 Research Methods in Psychology C PSYC 321 3 Science of Nutrition C HLTHST 100XF 3 Social Psychology C PSYC 431 3 Spanish Language C SPANISH 101 4 FH Statistics C MATH 254 3 FM World Conflicts Since 1900 C HIST 300XF 3 World Population C SOC 312 3 Workplace Communication with Computers C BUSCOM 100XF 3
The International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme (DP) is a demanding course of study that leads to culminating exams for highly motivated high school students. 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. These scores can fulfill major requirements as well as University Foundations Program course requirements (see the Boise State University catalog for a list of University Foundations Program courses). 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 Boise State transcript, with a grade of Pass (P), after the 10th day of the student's first term enrolled at Boise State University. IB exams cannot be used to repeat a class previously graded.
An IB transcript may be requested by contacting:
- Address: IB Global Centre, Bethesda, 7501 Wisconsin Avenue, Suite 200 West, Bethesda, Maryland 20814
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone: (301) 202-3000
- FAX: (301) 202-3003
- Skype: IBAmericas Extension 3000
IB Exam Level Minimum Score Boise State Equivalent
(As of 1/1/18)
Credits Foundational Studies Designation Biology SL or HL 4 BIOL 100 4 FN Biology SL or HL 5 BIOL 191 4 FN Biology SL or HL 6 BIOL 191, 192 8 FN (BIOL 191) Business Management SL or HL 4 MGMT 301, 332, 410 9 Chemistry HL 4 CHEM 111, 111L 4 FN Classical Languages, Greek SL or HL 4 FORLNG 197 4 FH Classical Languages, Greek SL or HL 5 FORLNG 197 8 FH Classical Languages, Latin SL or HL 4 LATIN 211 4 FH Classical Languages, Latin SL or HL 5 LATIN 211, 212 8 FH Computer Science SL or HL 4 CS 100XF 3 Dance SL or HL 4 THEA 210 3 Design Technology SL or HL 4 ITM 100XF 3 Diploma Programme n/a Completion ENGL 101 3 College First-Year Composition Diploma Programme + English A Language and Literature SL or HL Completion + 5 ENGL 101, 102 6 College First-Year Composition Economics SL or HL 5 ECON 201, 202 6 FS English A Language and Literature SL or HL 5 ENGL 100XF 3 English A Literature SL or HL 4 ENGL 110[note] 3 FH English B SL or HL 4 ENGL 100XF 3 English B SL or HL 5 ENGL 100XF 6 English B SL or HL 6 ENGL 100XF 9 English B SL or HL 7 ENGL 100XF 12 Environmental Systems and Societies SL 4 ENVHLTH 100XF 3 Film HL 4 COMM 200XF 3 Film SL 4 COMM 100XF 3 Geography SL or HL 4 GEOG 102 3 FS Geography SL or HL 5 GEOG 100 (As of 8/1/2019, GEOG 100 will become GEOG 101.), 102 6 FS Global Politics SL or HL 4 POLS 200 3 History SL 4 HIST 100 3 FH History, Africa and the Middle East HL 4 HIST 100, 151 6 FH(Hist 100) History, Americas HL 4 HIST 100, 112 6 FH, FS History, Asia and Oceania HL 4 HIST 100, 121 6 FH, FS History, Europe HL 4 HIST 100, 102 6 FH Information Technology in a Global Society SL or HL 4 ITM 100XF 3 Language AB Initio SL 4 SPANISH 101 4 FH Language B SL or HL 4 101 4 FH Language B SL or HL 5 101, 102 8 FH Language B SL or HL 6 101, 102, 201 11 or 12 FH Language B SL or HL 7 101, 102, 201, 202 14 or 16 FH Literature and Performance SL 5 ENGL 100XF 3 Further Mathematics - For Further Math HL additional topic credit assessment take your syllabus to the Math department. HL 6 MATH 175, 187, 301 9 Mathematics HL 4 MATH 143, 144 5 FM (MATH 143) Mathematics HL 6 MATH 143, 144, 170 9 FM (MATH 143, 170) Music SL or HL 4 MUS 100XF 3 Philosophy SL or HL 4 PHIL 101 3 FH Physics HL 5 PHYS 111, 112 8 FN (PHYS 111) Psychology SL or HL 5 PSYC 101 3 FS Social and Cultural Anthropology SL or HL 5 ANTH 102 3 FS Sports, Exercise and Health Science SL 4 KINES 100XF 3 Theatre SL or HL 4 THEA 101 3 FA Visual Arts SL or HL 4 ART 100XFV 3 FA World Religions SL 4 HUM 100XF 3
The American Council on Education (ACE)
Students who have completed an American Council on Education (ACE) training program can submit course completion certificates or exam scores and receive general elective credit based on the recommendations of ACE’s The National Guide to College Credit for Workforce Training.
Credit for ACE programs will be recorded on the Boise State transcript, with a grade of Pass (P), after the 10th day of the student’s first term 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 Academic Adjustment form which can be found on Student Forms.
Military Training Credit
You may receive credit for your military training or experiences. Boise State awards credit based on the American Council on Education (ACE) recommendations. Information about ACE credit recommendations can be found at: Understanding Your Military Transcript
All enlisted, officers and warrant officers, both active and veterans from all Army components, Coast Guard, Marine Corps and Navy may initiate this process by submitting a Joint Service Transcript to Boise State University Office of the Registrar. Information about your Joint Service Transcript and how to order it can be found at: Military.com
Air Force personnel need to contact the Community College of the Air Force to request an official transcript be sent to Boise State University. Credits will be evaluated from that transcript.
Credit for military training will be recorded on the Boise State transcript after the 10th day of your first term of enrollment at Boise State University. These credits are general elective Pass (P) credits only and cannot be used to meet university foundations requirements. They can be used to fulfill major requirements, if approved by the academic department chair and the appropriate dean.
If you have completed two or more years of active military service, you may also request that the Boise State Military Science department evaluate your military service for possible credit toward the ROTC Basic Course. Credit for the ROTC Basic Course is only awarded to those who have committed to pursuing the ROTC Advanced Course.
Credit For Prerequisites Not Taken
Credit for prerequisites not taken only applies to undergraduate students.
Depending on background or experience, you may be allowed to take some courses without first taking a prerequisite course. In some cases, you may also be able to receive credit for the prerequisite course. To take a course without first taking the prerequisite, you must obtain the approval of the head of the appropriate academic department. Complete the form Credit for Prior Learning – Credit for Prerequisites Not Taken and submit it to the Registrar’s Office, Administration Building, Room 110. A $20 per course fee will be charged to apply for credit for prerequisites not taken. Fees charged are the same regardless of whether a student is full-time or part-time. Grading will be done on a Pass/Fail system. Only Pass (P) grades will be transcribed. Grades will be transcribed if/when you complete the advanced course and earn a grade of C- or higher. Academic departments determine which courses can qualify for this credit.
Course challenges apply to both graduate and undergraduate students.
If you feel your background, education, and experience have given you sufficient knowledge in a subject area, you may challenge certain courses. That is, you 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 you are eligible to take the challenge exam. You may not challenge a course to improve a previous grade earned in that course.
After you have completed 12 semester credits at Boise State University, and you have received permission from the appropriate academic department to register for a challenge exam, you must complete the form Credit for Prior Learning – Challenge and submit it to the Registrar’s Office, Administration Building, Room 110. A $50 per course fee will be charged to take the challenge exam prepared by an academic department. For externally prepared challenge exams, a $20 per course fee is paid to the university. Any Boise State fees for tests are paid directly by the student. Any proctoring/testing center fees are paid by the academic department out of the university fee. Fees charged are the same regardless of whether a student is full-time or part-time. For departmentally prepared exams, the department determines the grading system. Grades may be recorded as either Pass (P) or as a letter grade (A+ through C-). Grades of D+ or lower will not be transcribed. Before you take the exam, the department will tell you what type of grading is available.
Prior Learning Portfolio
Prior learning portfolios only apply to undergraduate students.
Credit for prior learning experience is also possible in some departments through development of a formal, professional, written portfolio. The portfolio outlines, in-depth, the knowledge you have gained outside the college classroom and shows the relationship to college-level learning. Assessment of portfolios and credit recommendations are determined by the academic department in which the credit is being requested. To apply for credit through this method, you will be required to pay a $75 per course fee to have your portfolio reviewed. Fees charged are the same regardless of whether a student is full-time or part-time. For further information on this process, contact the Registrar’s Office, Administration Building, Room 110, (208) 426-4249. For further information on specific applications, contact the appropriate academic department.