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How does CLEP work?

CLEP exams are designed to fit with wherever you are in your educational journey. Below are steps on how to earn college credit through CLEP.

Step 1: Check your college’s CLEP credit policy.

Individual colleges decide how they award credit for CLEP. The American Council on Education (ACE) recommends colleges grant credit for a score of 50 (a C-level grade) on all CLEP exams, but individual institutions set their own CLEP credit policies and may require different scores for awarding credit.

Step 2: Register and pay for your exam on the CLEP website.

After you’ve reviewed your college’s CLEP policy and decided which exam to take, sign up for your exam. During registration, select an institution to receive your CLEP exam score for free, or wait to send your score after taking the exam and pay a $20 fee.

Step 3: Contact a CLEP test center to schedule your exam.

Since there are over 2,000 CLEP test centers with different testing schedules, you’ll need to contact a nearby test center to schedule your exam. Students have 6 months from the time they registered to take the CLEP exam.

Step 4: Prepare for your exam using free and low-cost study resources.

Find recommendations for online courses, textbooks, and study materials on each of the CLEP exam pages or on the CLEP Practice page.

Step 5: Take your exam.

On exam day, you take the CLEP exam on a computer at the test center, and exams typically take 90–120 minutes to complete depending on the subject. Immediately after the exam, you’ll receive an unofficial score report from the test center. If you selected an institution to receive your score during registration, the score will be automatically sent to the college or university once you complete the exam. It takes approximately 10–14 business days for a college or university to receive the score, and the institution may take additional time to review the score and award credit.

How to Purchase and Schedule a CLEP Exam

  • Choose a CLEP exam online directly from the exam page or from the CLEP registration page
  • Create an online account, and submit your payment through the My Account portal.
  • The cost is $87. Note: Make sure you use your name as it appears on your official ID. Pay with a debit or credit card (MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Discover, or JCB).
  • Contact a  CLEP test center nearby to schedule your exam. The test center may charge you an additional administration fee, usually around $25.

Military service members can take CLEP exams at no cost. Learn more. 

Refund Policies

CLEP exam and preparation material purchases—such as examination guides and study guides—are refundable.

  • For CLEP exam purchases: Exams are refundable for up to 7 days from the date of purchase, with the exception of redeemed tests.
  • For CLEP study guides: Study guides that are in new, unused, and in resalable condition are refundable within 30 days of the order date with a copy of the packing slip.
  • For CLEP e-guides: E-guides are refundable within 7 days of the purchase date. The customer will be required to submit a letter of destruction to process the refund of a CLEP e-guide.

Please make sure that you have thoroughly researched your exam and preparation material selections prior to paying for them.

Test Taker Name Change Requests

For name changes, complete, sign, and fax the name change request form (.pdf/356KB) along with any identification documentation (if required) to the College Board’s CLEP Services at 610‐628‐3726, or email it as an attachment to [email protected].

Will My Registration Ticket Expire?

CLEP exam registration tickets expire 6 months from the date of purchase. The expiration date for your exam registration ticket can be found in My Account as well as on the CLEP exam registration ticket.

Military-funded test takers: A CLEP exam registration ticket will be automatically canceled 6 months from the date of purchase to prevent DANTES-funded test takers from losing their funding. There is no penalty for canceling a registration ticket. However, if your ticket is canceled, you will need to register for your exam again. Learn more about your eligibility to take free CLEP exams.

Accommodations for Students with Disabilities

If you have a disability, such as a learning or physical disability, that would prevent you from taking a CLEP exam under standard conditions, you may request accommodations at your preferred test center. Contact your preferred test center well in advance of the test date to make the necessary arrangements and to find out the deadline to submit documentation and approval of accommodations. Accommodations that can be arranged directly with test centers include:

  • ZoomText (screen magnification)
  • Modifiable screen colors
  • Use of a human reader, a scribe/writer, or a sign language interpreter
  • Extended time
  • Rest breaks (as needed)

If the above accommodations do not meet your needs, do not register online for your exam. Contact CLEP Services at [email protected] for information about other accommodations.