Excelsior College Offers High-Stakes Exams as a Way for Students to Earn Credit

ALBANY, N.Y. (August 13, 2019) –  Students at Excelsior College have several ways to earn college credit without having to complete a college course. One way is to take high-stakes exams.

Excelsior College offers two exam programs: UExcel exams and Excelsior College Exams (ECEs) in nursing.  Both programs allow students to study independently and then take and pass an exam to earn college credit.

UExcel exams are available to anyone. You do not have to be enrolled in an Excelsior College degree program to take these exams. Students can earn credits in business, technology, liberal arts, science, math, English, physiology, finance, gerontology and many more.

The ECE exams in nursing are designed to meet specific requirements for the nursing theory component of the associate degree in nursing program at Excelsior College. Students must be enrolled in the associate degree in nursing program to take these exams.

“These exams provide the ultimate flexibility. Students can earn college credit by exam rather than by taking a course that requires you to complete assignments and take multiple tests on a schedule,” said Mika Hoffman, executive director of the Center for Educational Management and Prior Learning Assessment at Excelsior College. “They are especially beneficial for students who are in the military or work in nursing, law enforcement, and emergency services, or for anyone who has a job that has a different kind of schedule.”

Passing these high-stakes exams requires discipline and independent study by the student. To guide and assist students, Excelsior College offers support materials, including content guides, guided learning materials, and practice tests.

Excelsior also offers “tons of free information about the test in the content guides before you sign up and pay so you can decide if it is something you can pass,” said Hoffman. “The content guides can be downloaded for free on our website before you make a decision to take the test.”

The content guides contain detailed outlines, plus resources such as sample questions with explanations of the answers — all available before you pay for the exam. For some exams, there are additional free resources, such as journal articles and other resources compiled into a downloadable PDF file, or detailed guides for studying the subject.

Excelsior College also sells practice tests for most of the high-stakes exams that show the right and wrong answers and offer feedback as to why the answer is correct or incorrect. Practice test questions are prepared to the same standard as the regular test.

Students who are enrolled at Excelsior College can speak with academic advisors and use the library or tutoring system for support as they prepare for UExcel exams or ECEs.

Once they are prepared, students take their exams at a Pearson VUE test center. They can schedule the exam for anytime during the term that fits their schedule.


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About Excelsior College

Excelsior College is a regionally accredited, not-for-profit online college focused on helping adults complete their degrees and advance their careers. The college contributes to the development of a diverse, educated, and career-ready society by valuing lifelong learning with an emphasis on serving individuals historically underrepresented in higher education. Founded in 1971, Excelsior meets students where they are— academically and geographically—removing obstacles to the educational goals of adults pursuing continuing education and degree completion. Our pillars include innovation, flexibility, academic excellence, and integrity.