What are 5 essential CLEP/DSST Books?

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Shawn Ambrose, Dec 29, 2009.

  1. Shawn Ambrose

    Shawn Ambrose New Member

    OK CLEP/DSST experts,

    I was asked this question from a soon to be deployed NCO. "What five CLEP/DSST books would you recommend for a soldier to take to Iraq?"

    The subjects don't matter - but he wants to set up a small library for his soldiers. He knows that the company commander is a certified Test Control Officer and no matter where they end up - CLEP/DSST is an option (paper based).

    Here would be my five:

    1. College Board Official CLEP Guide

    2. Official DSST Test Prep Guide

    3. Barron's CLEP

    4. REA Analyze and Interpret Literature

    5. Cliff Notes - Economics

    Here's my rationale:

    The 1st two are obvious since those are offical guides with info for 8 DSST exams and all the CLEP exams.

    The Barron's CLEP has sample tests for English Comp, Humanities, College Mathematics, Natural Science, and Social Science - History. I especially liked the sample questions for the Comp with Essay.

    REA Analyze and Interpret Lit - just because that exam is a relatively easy six credits IMHO,

    Cliff Notes - Economics. My 18 yr old son used these as his only test prep source for Micro and Macro (although he reads the WSJ daily).

    Again, I'm looking at some other ideas for this NCO. Thanks!

  2. cookderosa

    cookderosa Resident Chef

    Oh that's hard. I'd have to say it depends on a million things...but here is what I'd go with if I had to:

    1. College Board Official CLEP Guide

    2. Official DSST Test Prep Guide (however, I think this is online for free)

    3. REA Social Science and History *

    4. any College Math text with answer key, Saxon Algebra 1/2 would work

    5. Spanish for Dummies - really good odds of finding someone to practice with, and if you pull off a good score you earn 12 credits.

    *the sections in this book, might be enough to pull off a pass in some of the other social science areas- maybe psych, maybe soc, maybe the histories. Excellent book by the way.
  3. I took a total of 7 CLEP examinations. Most of them, like Principles of Marketing and College Algebra, I didn't even bother to study for and passed quite easily.

    I did have to study for the Spanish CLEP... I used REA's book. The positives: if you know this book well, you WILL pass the test. The negatives: it's not very well organized, the typos are tremendous and the answer key isn't always correct in providing an answer that actually matches the question or the correct order of the question.

    I still highly recommend it because it has ALL the information that you will need. I passed with a 78... when I only needed a 63 to get full credit http://degreeinfo.com/images/smilies/biggrin.gif.
  4. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator

    Here are my picks just for pure study material for individual tests:
    REA Analyze and Interpret Literature
    REA History I
    REA Intro to Sociology
    Comex Humanities
    Comex Social Science and History
  5. PonyGirl93

    PonyGirl93 Member

    I don't know anything about DSST, but these are the five I would recommend for CLEP.

    College Board Official Study Guide
    REA CLEP General Exams Study Guide (includes Humanities, Mathematics, Natural Sciences, English Comp, and Social Sciences & History)
    CliffsNotes, those are fantastic for every subject.
    REA Freshman Comp Study Guide
    REA Analyzing & Interpreting Lit
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 4, 2010

    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    Well, it depends how much he/she remembers what they learned from High School. I found that InstantCert.com is very helpful.
  7. Fortunato

    Fortunato Member

    Peterson's offers a lot of CLEP and DSST prep material for free to military members and their families through their DOD website located at:


    Before they implemented their registration system, the material was available in PDF format, don't know what they use now, since I'm not eligible to register. Your NCO friend might want to check this out though, because he could load up a bunch of USB flash drives with a lot of good info. Hope he has a great deployment!
  8. My opinion: the official CLEP guide is COMPLETELY USELESS. You can get all of the information from the book directly on their website. Also, with the Peterson's practice tests, I can't see any good use for the practice questions in the book, especially considering that they aren't very similar to the questions you see on the actual tests (as has, at least, been my experience). I tell you this as someone who actually bought the book and wishes he didn't.

    Go to free-clep-prep.com. There are lots of resources (almost all of them free) for each CLEP. In fact, there is a link through which you can actually take the Peterson's tests for free (through some arrangement with the Indiana public library system).

    For my Sociology CLEP, I found a book from the library: Sociology by John E. Farley, read it over the course of 2 1/2 weeks and passed with a 79 (80 being the highest possible score). In fact, I've had some fun quizzing my friend who recently took a Sociology course in college and apparently learned less than I did in those 2 weeks. My sister too, a Sociology major (recent grad. from Boston College), just shrugs when I quiz her on things I learned from the book. Great book if you want to really understand sociology (which I did)... but definitely overkill if all you want to do is pass the test (generally not my style).

    The Spanish CLEP, I used the REA book... I agree 100% with what "Dr." Shill Gregor :)p) says about it, and even noticed those same errors. It will help you pass big time, but it's a mess to navigate.

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