When we started homeschooling nearly seven years ago, I thought it was hard. There’s enough information, opinions, and comparing out there to make a novice homeschool mama want to pull her hair out. Eventually, we found a groove and things were better. Four years ago we started high school, and I knew it was hard. I’m not a records-keeper. I never have been. (Note: Don’t be like Jen. Keep records!!) I’m more of a throw-awayer. I despise clutter and unnecessary papers lying around drive me crazy.
Anyway, so along with high school comes dual credit, CLEP, transcripts, financial aid, course descriptions, and a whole slew of other new things to make you question whether or not you’ve done enough for your kid. Thankfully, there are companies like SpeedyPrep that will come alongside you and help ease some of the burdens. For the past few weeks, I’ve been using Literature CLEP Prep and my bigs have been tasting the CLEP world, using Spanish and Psychology.
What is CLEP?
The CLEP (College Level Examination Program) is a group of standardized tests created and administered by College Board (they also do the SAT testing). These tests assess college-level knowledge in thirty-three subject areas and provide a way to earn college credit without taking college courses. Yay for being able to stay home! (Oh, wait, is that just me?)
How does SpeedyPrep help with CLEP prep?
Using the CLEP exam guidelines, published by College Board, SpeedyPrep created its program with:
- fill-in-the-blank flash card questions
- question explanations
- short videos to expand the user’s knowledge of the flash card questions
- each of the 24 courses covers a broad range of facts, concepts, vocabulary and processes
Passing a CLEP exam shows that you have a fundamental and working knowledge of a college-level subject. Once your child has successfully completed the CLEP exam, it becomes a part of their transcript. Basically, it boils down to you not having to pay tuition for a class, buy textbooks, attend class, turn in assignments or take mid-terms and finals- but still get the credit.
So, I think the real question is, “Why not CLEP?”
What does it cost?
With each of the above subscriptions, you get unlimited access to all 24 courses. Multiple students can use the program, as long as they are all using different programs. There is a progress bar for each course, and if multiple students are using the same course, there’s no way to differentiate between who has done what.
How we used SpeedyPrep
My original plan was to have my 12th-grade son work through the Spanish course, my highly intelligent 15-year-old daughter work through the Psychology, and because I have a love of literature, I wanted to take a look at the Lit course. Unfortunately, as things sometimes go in the homeschooling word, my plans fizzled. Neither of them was very willing to complete the course.
I was able to get them to at least try the videos and flashcards, but that was it. It may be because my son’s only interest is music (composing, playing, and singing), and my daughter, well . . . I’m not sure why she didn’t like it. She has a great love of the brain and all things neurological. She studies behaviors, habits, effects of things (environmental and drug-related) on the brain. I really thought it would work with her, however, I was wrong. Perhaps, in a year or two she’ll be more interested in taking CLEP exams. My bank account sure hopes so!
As for me, I quite enjoyed going through the Literature flash cards to see what I remembered. While the videos aren’t the main component of the program, they are very helpful in driving home the necessary information to answer correctly. Because spelling and capitalization are counted with the answers, you’ve really got to know your stuff!
I would like to add that SpeedyPrep is not a replacement for the high school class. CLEP exams are designed to be taken by students who have already obtained the knowledge about any of the given subjects. SpeedyPrep helps you train for the exam, not learn the information for the first time.
While it wasn’t a perfect fit for my students at the moment, I’m sure it would be for many families out there. I totally recommend SpeedyPrep to all families in need of CLEP prep.