Policy and Procedure for Credit by Examination

Policy and Procedure for Credit by Examination

  1. Credit by examination may be obtained where competencies and knowledge can best be evaluated through formal examination, and only for courses for which one comprehensive examination is a reliable method to assess competence and knowledge.  Faculty in the area of expertise shall judge whether a course is suitable for credit by examination.  Courses that require laboratory work or extensive group interaction are by their very nature not suitable courses for credit by examination.
  2. No student who has previously completed a Penn State course, regardless of outcome, can receive credit by examination (see Policies and Rules for Students, Section 42-50), nor may any student who has withdrawn from that course (receiving WN, WP, or WF) receive credit by examination.  This policy does not apply to courses taken at other institutions.
  3. To apply for credit by examination, the student must complete a Credit by Examination Request Form.  The request must be made no later than the end of the fifteenth class day of the semester in which credit is to be granted.  The request will be submitted to the Division Head, who will either approve or reject the request.
  4. Upon approving the request, the Division Head will solicit an instructor of the course to offer an examination.  The Division Head will consult with the relevant Department or Program Coordinator regarding the qualifications and eligibility of the instructor.  Participation of any faculty member is strictly voluntary.  Credit for examination will not be offered if no eligible, willing instructor can be identified.  The instructor must have offered the course within two academic years of the date of the request.
  5. If the instructor agrees, Upon agreeing to offer the option, the instructor must complete the Credit by Examination Request Form.  The Division Head will seek the approval of the Dean, as called for in Policies and Rules Students, Section 42-50 and AAPPM E-2.  The approval of the Credit by Examination option will then be communicated in writing to the student and his or her advisor by the Division Head.
  6. The instructor will provide a package of course materials (including a full syllabus and any other materials relevant to the examination) to the student, and together they will set a date for the examination.  The examination must be administered no later than the end of the fourteenth week of the semester.
  7. The instructor and the student are encouraged to meet in order to discuss the relationship between the student’s experience and the Penn State course.  The instructor will provide examination representative of the content of the instructional material and the goals of the course as delivered in its most recent offering by the instructor.
  8. The examination will be graded in accordance with the standards of the course as it was delivered.  The instructor will submit the student’s grade for the course to the Division Head, who (if credit is to be awarded) will so advise the Registrar.  If the outcome of the examination is lower than a grade of C, the Division Head will record the results, and the student will not be permitted to pursue credit by examination for the same course again.