Easiest and Hardest DANTES and/or CLEP Tests

Discussion in 'CLEP, DANTES, and Other Exams for Credit' started by basrsu, Dec 8, 2007.

  1. basrsu

    basrsu Member

    Just out of curiosity, what are the easiest DANTES/CLEP tests to pass and the most difficult? I realize this is a matter of opinion, but by general consensus...

  2. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    The Analyzing and Interpreting Literature CLEP was the easiest one I took. It was a glorified literacy test. The only way I can imagine it would be difficult is maybe for a non-native speaker of English, since it uses poetic terms and so forth that might be new.

    I've heard that the Here's To Your Health DSST is very easy also, but I didn't take it myself. I didn't want to take any test where I didn't get the result instantly. :)

  3. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator Staff Member

    I looked at the military passing rates. Anything over 50% passing is probably pretty easy.
  4. CoachTurner

    CoachTurner Member

    I second the CLEP Analyzing and Interpreting Lit for an easy 6 hours. I found all of the comp. exams pretty easy but the Literatures were a challenge.

    The DANTES Intro to Law Enforcement was a bit of a cakewalk too.

    DANTES Intro to Computers, Business Math, Intro Business were pretty easy too.

    DANTES Money and Banking was HARD.

    Trying to get 12 hours for the language CLEP exams (not being a native speaker of those languages) was a challenge for me.
  5. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator Staff Member

    I took both, and agree on all points.
  6. Fortunato

    Fortunato Member

    That's a really subjective question. I thought that the Humanities CLEP was the easiest test I've ever taken, while others here have said it's one of the hardest. I thought Accounting was one of the harder ones, although I think it's been modified since I took it. Marketing was pretty easy if you've read an introductory marketing text, and the Western Civilization exams were easy for this history buff. Once of the hardest credit-by-exam experiences I ever had was the DSST for Statistics. I did well, but I remember actually taking the exam as a rather torturous process. I think in general, you'll find most CLEP exams to be pretty easy, and the DSST exams to be more difficult. They're all manageable, though, generally a few nights of intense study is enough preparation to get you through.
  7. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member Staff Member

    Why is everybody always worried about which exams are the "easiest" or the "hardest"? Just go ahead and take those exams that interest you and/or those that fulfill the distribution requirements of your degree! :rolleyes:
  8. basrsu

    basrsu Member

    Why is everybody always worried about which exams are the "easiest" or the "hardest"?

    Good question, Ted. I've wondered the same thing. In my original question, I never wrote that I was "worried." I only wrote out of curiosity, as my first post states.

  9. Delta

    Delta Active Member


    What are you implying sir?
  10. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator Staff Member

    The military results could be a good sampling of test takers. Since it is free to the military many people, including myself, can take the exams with little to no knowledge of the subject. If the passing rate is high and you know something about the subject you have a good shot at passing.

    I do not know of any other results for the pass/fail percentages for these test. Do you?
  11. Delta

    Delta Active Member


    No I do not. Your post came across condescending towards military folk by appearing to tell us that if those in the military have a pass rate of greater than 50%, than the exam should be "pretty easy". Just curious on how you derived such a premise.
  12. cookderosa

    cookderosa Resident Chef


    Delta, I'm not trying to butt in, but I think it's ONLY the military that posts the pass rates (not College Board) so one is simply suggesting to check the pass rate- and to do that you must check the "military pass rate." You can google it. I didn't find it condescending- but I can see where someone might not have understood what the poster meant.

    For the record- I'd add a vote for Analyzing and Interpreting literature as "easiest" because there isn't anything to study. There is no exam content to study (you could google a few literary vocab words if you feel that you MUST study something) Just comprehend what you read- the passages are on the exam and numbered. My husband found this test horrid since his reading comprehension isn't his strength. Questions are like this:

    What did the author mean by 'fire' in the 3rd stanza? a) passion b) death c) confrontation d) fear

    There were 3 exams I didn't study for: DANTES Technical Writing (easy and fast), CLEP Information Systems (should have studied), and Analyzing and Interpreting Literature (easy but took every second of the time allowed).

    I think the "easy" exams are ones that you can give your attention to. Get some SPARKS notes, an REA book, the CLEP official exam outline and go to work. Use google and wikipedia to answer your questions. You can also join Instantcert if you are looking for additional help. Their message boards are free, but the study cards cost $. I love the site for it's forums, but don't use the study cards. Consider it an "Independant Study" course that you are designing for yourself. Learn all the basics of the topic and a few of the more complex topics; and you'll earn the credit.
  13. CoachTurner

    CoachTurner Member

    I share that opinion - here's why: Those of us who are/were military testers, because the tests are completely free, often take these with no prep whatsoever since there's no disadvantage to failing a test. I did this for three years and failed more than a couple but passed some with ease. It's not about "military people are dumber" but that military people tend not to have the same motivation ($125+ test fee) to heavily prepare for the exams.

    Therefor, if the military pass rate on the test is over 50% (assuming that some testers took the exam without any study) then the pass rate for those who have studied will be much better.

    Further, it can be assumed that if the pass rate of any population (such as military takers) is higher on some tests than others - then the tests which have a higher pass rate must be easier than those with a low pass rate. What we often don't know though is how many testers were in each sample. An exam with 75% pass rate of 4 testers tells us much less about the exam's relative ease than one with a 75% pass rate and 100 testers. True, it's a generalization and not completely valid premise, but there is some level of validity to the idea.

    Since absolute equality of difficulty is impossible for any number of reasons, it is factual that some tests must be easier than some other tests. Even if we correct for individual ability - there still must be some difference in the inherent ease of some exams. This means that there is such a thing as "the easiest test" and "the hardest test" and that we can identify which among the DANTES exams may meet this by using pass rates of some population.

    Given the limited number of hours in a day, it only makes sense to take those tests which present the highest potential for a passing score before taking those with a low potential when there is no other reason to distinguish one from the other. If someone needs "six hours in anything", then the best plan would be to take the easiest possible exam - and therefor the basis of the original question.

    just some thoughts...
  14. tigerhead

    tigerhead New Member

    By far the easiest for me was DANTES Principles of Supervision. My hardest (not being as well read as some) and the one that required the most preparation was the CLEP Humanities. With that said, I agree with Fortunato, the question is very subjective and it depends largely on one's background and experience.

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 9, 2007
  15. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member Staff Member

    At the same time, you never wrote that you weren't "worried." But those who have to ask which are "easiest" and which are "hardest" run the risk of appearing to be intellectually lazy.
  16. basrsu

    basrsu Member

    Ted: At the same time, you never wrote that you weren't "worried." But those who have to ask which are "easiest" and which are "hardest" run the risk of appearing to be intellectually lazy.

    Or just curious, as my first post stipulates. :)

  17. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator Staff Member

    I was in the reserves for nine years and was "almost" activated 4 times. Did not mean to sound condescending towards the military. Look here for the tests I passed with little to no studying-

    I completed two classes from the University of Phoenix for upper level credit and the following CLEP/DANTES/ECE exams:

    08-14-2002 DANTES Intro to Criminal Justice
    08-14-2002 DANTES Intro to Law Enforcement

    09-04-2002 DANTES Intro to Computing
    09-04-2002 DANTES Organizational Behav
    09-04-2002 DANTES Envir and Humanity
    09-09-2002 DANTES – HR Management
    09-09-2002 DANTES Tech Writing
    09-09-2002 DANTES Intro to Business
    09-12-2002 DANTES Here’s to you Health
    09-17-2002 CLEP History and Social Science
    09-19-2002 ECE Labor relations
    09-22-2002 DANTES Ethics
    09-22-2002 DANTES MIS
    09-26-2002 ECE Production/Operation Mgt
    09-30-2002 CLEP English w/essay

    11-11-2002 ECE Research Methods in Psy

    I had to make time to take the last exam...work kept getting in the way.

    It is possible to complete your degree in a very short time as long as you have a great resource, like this site, to guide you.
  18. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member Staff Member

    The other thing that "got" me about this question is that "easy" and "hard" are very subjective terms, and the answers will vary widely from one individual to the next, based on their respective interests and levels of intelligence.
  19. Steve Levicoff

    Steve Levicoff Well-Known Member

    Lighten up, people . . . Everyone knows that the ultimate classical example of an oxymoron is "military intelligence." If it weren't for that kind of joke, we would never be able to read "Humor in Uniform" in Reader's Digest.

    Be that as it may, I never took a CLEP. I did take the DANTES Astronomy exam for TESC, which then used a passing rate of 37% (I kid you not). I crammed two paperback books on astronomy over the course of two weekends, took the test (and passed in the 60-ish range), was able to answer Jeopardy questions on astronomy for a few weeks, then promptly forgot it all.

    As you can guess, I think the "hard or easy" question is a legitimate one - I already knew that I wouldn't learn anything new until graduate school (keeping in mind that I did my TESC B.A. in Humanities by way of 98 credits via portfolio, 16 via testing out, and 6 transferred in), so my goal was to rack up the credits I needed for my B.A. in order to get into grad school. Therefore, I have no problem with that notion. The piece of parchment is the bottom line, especially when it comes to fulfilling distribution requirements.
  20. cookderosa

    cookderosa Resident Chef


    And yet the lazy, curious, intellectually stimulated, and overachievers will ALL BE AWARDED the same end product for a 50. No one will know or care if you scored a single point higher. (ok, EC students are the exception) Why the big hoo-haa about which tests are easier? Some are, it's a fact, everyone knows it. There is no harm or dishonor in asking (in my opinion!).:rolleyes:
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 11, 2007

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