Alternative Credit

There are a variety of ways that you can bring course credits in to JBU through exams, military service and other life experiences.

On this page:

  • AP Exams
  • "A" Level Exams
  • International Baccalaureate (IB) Equivalency
  • CLEP
  • DSST
  • Credit for military training
  • Credit for prior learning

Students may apply a maximum of 30 semester hours of CLEP, Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate Program (IB), and Departmental Equivalency Exams toward a bachelor's degree; 15 maximum for an associate's degree.

Exam-based credit options

Advanced Placement (AP) Exams

AP scores must be sent directly from College Board to JBU. We will not accept scores from the student or a high school transcript.

Click on this link: AP Policy for Advanced Placement Policy.

International Baccalaureate Credit Equivalency

JBU awards credit for International Baccalaureate scores in higher level (HL) subjects with a minimum score of 5. The table below details the JBU class for which you will receive credit if you score at least a 5.

Anthropology SST 2123 Cultural Anthropology
Biology BIO 1003 Biological Science
Computer Science CS 1113 Introduction to Computers
Chemistry CHM 1124*
Economics ECN 2113 Microeconomics and ECN 2123 Macroeconomics
English A1 EGL 1023 English Composition II
English B EGL elective
Film COM 2083 Masterpieces of Film
French LS 2213 Intermediate French I and LS 2223 Intermediate French II
Geography SST 1143 World Regional Geography
German B LS 2513 Intermediate Language I and LS 2523 Intermediate Language II
History HST 2123 US History Since 1865
Mathematics MTH 1123 Survey of Calculus
Philosophy RPH 3003 Introduction to Philosophy
Physics PHY 2114 General Physics I
Psychology PSY 1013 Introductory Psychology
Spanish LS 2113 Intermediate Spanish I and LS 2123 Intermediate Spanish II
* If you plan to attend graduate school in the sciences or a health-related professional school, you will be required to take CHM 1124.


"A" Level Exams

“A” Level Exams will be awarded two semesters of credit (either 3 or 4 hours per semester) for each subject passed with grades of A through E. “AS” Level Exams will be awarded one semester of credit (3 or 4 hours) for each subject passed with grades of A through E.  Note: A different letter marking scale is used. Marks of D and E are acceptable passing grades (a grade of E is equivalent to our grade of C). No credit is awarded for “General Paper.” The specific credit awarded will be determined by the academic division.


Certain CLEP tests are recognized by JBU for credit toward elective and general education degree requirements.  Note: CLEP credit is accepted for English I only, not English II.

CLEP tests are offered in numerous testing centers. Find the location most convenient for you. 

JBU's school code for CLEP: 6321

Enrolled students should receive approval from their advisor and the Associate Registrar via the CLEP Request form before taking a CLEP test. Tests that duplicate or overlap college credit will not be approved.
An official CLEP score report must be sent directly from College Board to JBU to receive credit.

DSST Exams

JBU recognizes the following DSST tests for credit toward the JBU Online Undergraduate elective and general education degree requirements.

JBU's school code for DSST: 8066

Enrolled students should receive the Associate Registrar's approval to apply for credit from these tests to their graduation requirements before taking the test via a signed Approval to Transfer Form. Tests that duplicate or overlap previous college credit will not be approved.

More information about DSST tests, including how to purchase practice tests, is available from the test publisher at

Additional test preparation is available via third-party sources like Generally, there are additional fees associated with using those resources.

JBU Online Undergraduate Program accepts only the following exams:

CLICK HERE to see Exam Fact Sheets.


JBU Equivalent Course
(Sem Hrs)
A History of the Vietnam War


3 400
Art of the Western World ART 2233 3 400
Astronomy GSC 1033 3 400
Business Ethics and Society   3 400
Business Mathematics   3 400
Civil War and Reconstruction   3 400
Computing and Information Technology   3 400
Criminal Justice   3 400
Environmental Science   3 400
Ethics in America RPH 2423 3 400
Ethics in Technology   3 400
Foundations of Education   3 400
Fundamentals of Counseling   3 400
Fundamentals of Cybersecurity   3 400
General Anthropology ISC 2123 3 400
Health and Human Development KIN 1002 3 400
History of the Soviet Union   3 400
Human Resource Management MGT 3513 3 400
Introduction to Business BUS 1003 3 400
Introduction to Geography   3 400
Introduction to Geology   3 400
Introduction to Law Enforcement   3 400
Introduction to World Religions   3 400 
Lifespan Developmental Psychology PSY 2413 3 400
Management Information Systems   3 400
Math for Liberal Arts MTH 1113 3 400
Money and Banking ECN 3133 3 400
Organizational Behavior   3 400
Personal Finance   3 400
Principles of Advanced English Composition EGL 1013 3 400
Principles of Finance FIN 3003 3 400
Principles of Public Speaking (with speech) EGL 2523 3 400
Principles of Physical Science I GSC 1023 3 400
Principles of Statistics MTH 1003 3 400
Principles of Supervision MGT 2173 3 400
Substance Abuse   3 400
Technical Writing   3 400


*Exams listed under "Electives" can be applied only as elective credit; however, all DSST exams listed above can be applied toward elective credit if general education credit is not needed.

NOTE:  Exams that duplicate prior college credit will not receive credit and, therefore, should not be taken. DSST exams should be selected in conjunction with your degree completion plan.

JBU recognizes that collegiate-level learning may occur outside the classroom and has established specific procedures and policies for evaluating and granting credits for prior learning. 

Alternative credit options

Credit for military training

Active service members and veterans of the United States armed services may receive college credit for their military training and occupational specialties. JBU follows the military credit recommendations established by the American Council on Education (ACE).

To determine the academic credit for your military experience, JBU must review one or more of the following documents.

  • Members and veterans of the U.S. Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, Army Reserve, and National Guard should request an official Joint Services Transcript
  • Members and veterans of the U.S. Air Force should request official transcripts from the CCAF Registrar.

Learn more about benefits for military veterans

Credit for Prior Learning (CPL)

Credit for Prior Learning (CPL) may be earned only for documented and currently-held learning. It is not granted simply for the experience. "Prior learning" may result from reading, travel, work experience, workshops or seminars, or other professional or vocational experiences. The guidelines recommended by the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning will generally be followed, except where they might conflict with the university's existing policies. 

To request CPL, you must review it with your academic advisor. See all opportunities for CPL hours here

If credits do not fall into any of the following categories, the student must enroll in the CPL course for evaluation and completion.

  • American Council on Education (ACE) evaluated and approved credits
  • First Aid and CPR (only if completed through the Red Cross or American Heart Association).
  • The Joint Services Transcript (JST) includes consolidated information for the Army, Marine Corps, Navy and Coast Guard. The Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) is regionally accredited and therefore issues its own transcripts. (these credits will transfer as they appear on the transcript
  • FAA licensure and ratings
  • Police Training:
    • Basic Training = 5 hours Social/Behavioral Science
    • Police Service = 1-3 hours Health/PE (*Health/PE credit is based on 1 hour of credit per 6 months of service up to 18 months. Health/PE credit does not apply if the student has received credit for military basic training.)
    • Advanced Police Training = 1-10 hours elective (*Advanced police training credit is based on 1 semester hour per 60 contact hours)

The CPL course is for submission and evaluation of documentation of one or more of the following: 

  1. Submission of a Technical and Professional Training (TPT) worksheet which demonstrates learning attained through workshops or other training experiences that have not been evaluated by ACE, or another nationally recognized evaluation organization. 
  2. A life learning essay, at least eight pages in length, developed according to the Kolb model and based on experiential learning which may or may not have resulted from formal instruction and is determined to be consonant with the John Brown University curriculum. In the life learning essay, you must demonstrate how the outcomes of the experiential learning are similar to those of a particular course, or are appropriate to be considered as a topic within a particular subject area. Completed materials are submitted through the CPL online course. The faculty of the University evaluate TPT worksheets and life learning essays. Faculty evaluators may request additional documentation or restructuring of the student's essay before awarding credit. 

Credit for Prior Learning credit is limited to a total number of credits awarded per student (see catalog for more details). The posting of Credit for Prior Learning on a student transcript will be in a category labeled as such. The course title will be chosen by the faculty evaluator and the student.

Note: Students pay only for the one-credit CPL course (regular tuition) and a one-time assessment fee of $100/credit submitted for CPL evaluation. Payment of the fee in no way guarantees that credit will be awarded.