Credit Options

Learn more about non-traditional credit options at JBU

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In addition to taking elective courses, there are several ways students can earn credit toward a JBU Online bachelor's degree. Speak with your admissions counselor about these non-traditional credit options:

Credit by Examination (CLEP and DSST)

Credit by examination is an inexpensive way for you to validate learning in an academic area by taking a standardized test. Credit by exam is limited to 30 hours.

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

Students may not take a CLEP or DSST test if currently enrolled in the equivalent course on the first day of the semester. Students may take a CLEP or DSST equivalent to a course in which they were previously enrolled but did not receive credit. 

DSST Exams

Certain DSST tests are recognized by JBU for credit toward elective and general education degree requirements.

JBU's school code for DSST: 8066

Learn more about DSST


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

Learn more about CLEP

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).

In order 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 admission for military veterans


Credit for Prior Learning (CPL)

JBU recognizes that collegiate-level learning may occur outside of the classroom and has established specific procedures and policies for evaluating and granting credits for prior learning. Credit for Prior Learning may be earned only for documented and currently-held learning. It is not granted simply for 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 existing policies of the University. 

To request Credit for Prior Learning (CPL), you must review 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
  • 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 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.