Need Advice

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Army, Sep 30, 2009.

  1. Army

    Army New Member

    I have a couple of questions. I have no credits other than those listed on my AAARTS transcript from the Army for Basic and AIT. My goal is to attend a traditional university for my Junior and Senior years. So what I need to do is obtain an AA/AS so that I can apply as a transfer student. I am currently enrolled in the first semester of Penn Foster's Business Management degree program. I will most likely remove myself from the program soon, because they are NA and the chances of North Carolina universities accepting it is very slim.

    So, I am looking for a school that is RA, generous with military credits, etc. Does anyone have any suggestions on what route I should take to obtain my AA/AS that will transfer to a B&M school? Thanks in advance for any responses.

  2. AV8R

    AV8R Active Member

    I wouldn't worry so much about obtaining an associates degree before earning a bachelors. To enroll as a transfer student at most bachelor's degree granting schools you do not need an associates degree. Typically, you only need 30 credit hours. You can earn really affordable credits online through Clovis Community College or through Louisiana State University and then transfer into a BA/BS program.
  3. AV8R

    AV8R Active Member

    Oh, and you could also take 30 or so hours worth of CLEP exams and then transfer into a military friendly school directly. Make sure that the CLEP exams won't overlap with any military training. It's entirely possible that you could start as a junior somewhere and essentially skip the first two years of a bachelor's degree.
  4. AV8R

    AV8R Active Member

    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 30, 2009
  5. ideafx

    ideafx New Member

    Check out the eArmyU schools. Many of them have a B&M campus as well as extensive DL programs.
  6. JetTroop

    JetTroop New Member

    As someone said, you don't have to worry about getting an Associates degree if you are working on your Bachelors. One is not dependent on the other.

    However, if you're like me, I got my AA in the interim so I would have a degree until I earned my Bachelors. So I think it's sound advice to go that route on your quest for your undergrad (earning your Associates that is). Don't let anyone talk you into it being a bad idea.

    Like you, I was in the Army and had very few credits on my Army transcripts and for good reason. Not much of what I did qualified for real college credit. Some stuff does and usually your physical training will directly correlate to something in your lower college credits as well as a lot of electives. You may also have some stuff like Intro to Computers, Criminal Justice 101 (if an MP) or Typing depending on your MOS.

    As others have said, you can CLEP some courses but I caution you of this and say be careful of what you wish for. In my full-time job I work as a recruiter in law enforcement. I get asked a lot on how someone can bypass the state academy (usually a transfer from one state to another). I tell them how it works but urge them caution. Those officers who do try to bypass miss a lot of good, important training. Like mainly the state laws (yes they test out but not quite the same as attending the academy), refreshers on police tactics, etc.

    My point about CLEPing is, don't go crazy. If you CLEP anything and everything then what is the true value of your degree really? Yes you have one but did you learn anything of value? Thats important to me. Is it setting you up for failure in future classes? Meaning because you passed a test in Math are you going to be able to succeed in higher Math classes? The same for goes for English? I don't think CLEPing is bad at all, thats not what I'm saying. I am just saying be careful you don't set yourself up for failure that way and overdue it.

    Lastly the key to an easier than normal Associates degree (I know that last statement is contrary to what I typed above but...) is to take general classes in an Associates degree program that closely relates to whatever Bachelors degree program you choose. So my Associates is basically only lower level classes required in for my Bachelors program. There is no need to take Biology 101 twice, so I didn't. I looked for a general Associates degree that had class requirements that would fit into most Bachelor programs. So I didn't loose any credits at all when I transfered schools. So look for Biology, Chemistry, World History, etc. Stay away from specific courses in a program field. Those have a tendency not to transfer as easily.

    Food for thought, just my opinion :)
  7. AV8R

    AV8R Active Member

    I'm not aware of any school that will allow you to CLEP "anything and everything." After all, there are only so many CLEP exams available. :)

    The purpose of CLEP exams is to demonstrate college level knowledge so that one may earn college credit in a subject and move on. Much of the first two years of a bachelor's degree is spent repeating material that was learned in high school (or elsewhere). If I'm a huge fan of the History Channel and have soaked up extensive knowledge from my couch potato viewing while snacking on Doritos, why not earn history credit from CLEP exams? I've never heard of one case where someone was "set up for failure" from using CLEP exams. If you can knock off a year of college and save a bundle of cash in tuition money not spent, I say go for it.
  8. I concur - while there are only so many CLEP exams, you can also add in DSSTs, ECEs, TECEPs, etc. One would think you could actually complete a bachelor's solely through examination...oh wait, that's what I did.

    However, I would offer some caution - if you have most or all of the knowledge required, an exam like CLEP is invaluable. However, if it's just "jam, cram and exam" through Instantcert, etc. to get credits, don't expect this to give you a solid basis for future learning. With this I agree with JetTroop.
  9. JetTroop

    JetTroop New Member

    Thank you! That's exactly what I meant. I do see a need and purpose for CLEP. When you have vast knowledge in a subject matter CLEP makes perfect sense. To me, the cram and exam part doesn't set you up for positive learning experiences later in life. Having good knowledge in a subject matter is one thing but studying and cramming just to pass a test is another.

    As distance learners I feel we often do ourselves a great disservice and we wonder why people don't respect our untraditionally earned degrees as much as a traditionally earned degrees. Typically I think this is why. Not just with CLEP but when someone takes any and every short cut possible, people resent that. The goal of distance learning is to gain knowledge and EARN a college degree without having to attend traditional classes. I think that's a totally fair and plain English definition. Whether you attend school online because of work, family or any other reason, distance learning is supposed to open college up to the masses who can't attend regularly scheduled courses. I don't think the goal is to get your degree the fastest, cheapest or by doing the least amount of work.

    A couple of notes: Yes, most people respect our degrees...but some don't. I wasn't by any means saying all. However, there are skeptics out there. Two, I have taken a CLEP test before and do support them. I don't support taking all 34 CLEP exams for credit to circumvent college altogether. While I'm sure someone taking all 34 is rare, I was referring to someone taking numerous CLEP exams just so they don't have to do the work required in a college course. Hopefully no one is overly sensitive and think I'm attacking them, I am not. My opinion is neither right nor wrong, just my thoughts on the matter! :)

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