BA in 4 Weeks series - A SECOND DEGREE IN UNDER 3 HOURS INTRODUCTION You can earn two degrees from any of the three assessment institutions, Charter Oak State College (COSC), Excelsior College, or Thomas Edison State College (TESC). I have two degrees from what is now Excelsior College, one a BS Political Science (concentration) and the other, a BS in General Business. Excelsior College does not let their Liberal Arts graduates do a second BS or BA with concentration, but will allow Liberal Arts graduates of other schools to do a BS or BA with concentration. COSC will allow a second degree, but it will be in General Studies with a specialization or concentration (COSC degrees are all General Studies by major). TESC will allow a second degree BA with general concentrations, designated - BA in Humanities; BA in Math/Science; BA in Social Science/History. They also allow a BA with a specialization (much like the Excelsior concentration) in a variety of subjects. Additionally, they offer degrees with majors - BS Applied Science and Technology, BS Business, and BS Human Services. THe Graduate Record Subject Examination is offered in a variety of disciplines. Their primary purpose is to test the readiness of candidates for graduate study in a particular field. Most examinees writing these exams are Bachelor's graduates in the specific field or in a related discipline. Excelsior College is the only institution to award enough credit for a GRE subject exam, to trigger second degree conferral based solely on one's performance in that exam. Although the majority of GRE subject test examinees may be graduates in the field, this does not mean examinees who are neither graduates in the discipline or indeed graduates at all, cannot pass these tests at the required level. They can and frequently do. I used the GRE subject test in Political Science to provided all the necessary concentration credit for my first Excelsior degree. I wrote another GRE subject exam in Psychology, garnering an additional 30 credits. GRE subject examinations are an endangered species, and it seems that with every passing day there are fewer from which to choose. So if you're toying with the idea of doing this, don't hang about too long. Remember, you can earn such a degree by taking just one exam for around (these days) $120. COMPLETING A SECOND DEGREE IN 2 HOURS AND 50 MINUTES GRE SUBJECT EXAMS 1) Concentrations in numerous subjects can be completed by Excelsior College students by scoring above the 80th percentile in an appropriate GRE subject examination. 2) Credit is awarded on a sliding scale, from 3 credits for a score above the 35th percentile to 30 credits for a score above the 80th percentile. Increment rate is 3 credit hours per 5 percentile increase in score. The first 12 credits are awarded as lower division credits, and the rest as upper division credits. Thus a score above the 80th percentile yields 12 lower division credits and 18 upper division credits, for a total of 30 credits. The minimum requirements for a concentration is 30 credits with a minimum of 15 in the upper division. Therefore, passing a GRE subject exam above the 80th percentile satisfies concentration requirements, and all requirements for award of a second degree. 3) A list of acceptable GRE subject exams and their required scaled scores can be found at Excelsior.edu 4) Exam materials.......................................... Best are the "Practicing to take the [Economics/Physics etc.]" book series from ETS, who produce the actual GRE advanced subject exams. These are not study guides but past examination papers. They are *the* best indicator of what you know, what you don't know, and where you should concentrate your efforts within the relevant discipline. Most of the study guides from other publishers are of limited value. One notable exception is the series from THE PRINCETON REVIEW called "Cracking the GRE"... (Biology, Literature, Psychology). I've used the psychology offering and found it useful. The study notes are directly applicable to the GRE subject exam. The test questions are very close in level of difficulty and in scope to that of the actual exam. There are full answers to the questions in a subsequent section. Unfortunately, only 35 questions are included. So far as I know the series only covers the three exams listed above: pity. If using the Psychology offering, be sure to know and understand everything in this very thin volume. If you do, you *will* score above the 80th percentile. The Research & Education Association (REA) publishes a series of preparation guides for all the subject exams. These usually contain more than one full mock exam with answers (e.g. the mathematics book contains six full exams) and many of the books provide study notes. I found the study notes in the political science guide quite useful (GRE no longer offers the Political Science subject exam, unfortunately). However, the level of difficulty and focus of the questions did not reflect that of the actual GRE subject exam. This seems to be a common trait in the REA series. The REA Psychology book was of limited value. Other study guides from Arco and Barron's I found more a hindrance than a help, though the Barron's book was comprehensive, it lacked the keen focus of the Princeton offering. SUMMARY 1) Go to the ETS.org site and register for the exam of choice. 2) Sit GRE subject exam of choice for which there is a corresponding Excelsior concentration. 2) Have ETS send your GRE results to Excelsior College. When you receive your score (from ETS), and if it's above the 80th percentile, immediately enroll in Excelsior College (they will already have your GRE scores) and, in addition to the enrollment fee, pay the graduation fee, for you have already met the requirements for a second degree BS or BA - 30 credits in the concentration of which at least 15 must be upper division, you would have 18 UD + 12 LD for a total of 30 credits. Total cost including exam fees, books, college enrollment fee and graduation fees, $1200 even. BOOKS ETS "practicing to take" series: MUST BUY $13 Princeton Review "Cracking the GRE" series: MUST BUY (if applicable) $20 REA "preparation for the GRE" series: BUY (with reservations) $25 Arco/Barron's: keep your cash. The books can be found at Barnes & Noble, Borders and other retail outlets, or from Amazon.com on the Web. Finally, Excelsior College produces reading lists for many of the GRE subject exams.