Curriculum Ideas we’ve used

| October 21, 2011
In the Spirit of Sharing:Two of my kids have taken many exams, applying over 80 CLEP and DSST credits to their degrees.  Below is the order they took them in and a list of the primary resource they used.  My son focused on the History exams and my daughter’s focus was on the Business and Psychology exams. I’ve combined their lists to give some sense of which exams they studied for first and how they build on each other.  Remember, this is only a guide … not the best or only way.   I choose not to stick with just one publisher, but chose texts that were in line with my students’ learning styles. Please begin by reading this article: Which Books Should I Use? All of their tests included taking practice exams and reviewing the wrong answers. Visit the Yahoo group CLEPforHomeschool  for more ideas.


Learning Express e-books.  Available through your library if they subscribe to the Learning Express site.  Excellent free pdf files for a variety of homeschooling subjects.
Introduction to Computing DSST 8-week Study Group Tricia’s Lesson Plans   When using any text, always check the publisher’s website for a companion site. NOTE: I’ve put together a Computer Syllabus for this course for another group I facilitated.
Introduction to World Religions DSST
College Composition CLEP
Western Civilization I and II CLEP
Ethics in America DSST The philosophers covered in Western Civ I lay the foundation for this course.  Add study from Instantcert and Petersons practice exams.
Analyzing & Int Lit  CLEP
History of the US I CLEP
American Government CLEP See note for History of the US I
Civil War and the Reconstruction DSST
Social Science and History CLEP
Humanities CLEP Same as note above. Others suggest the text: The Humanities through the Arts (6th ed) by David Martin and Lee Jacobus along with the REA guide and practice tests. There is a fair amount of American Lit and English Lit on this exam, so consider studying for those CLEPs first.
Microeconomics CLEP Micro and Macro econ were the foundation courses to a host of business cleps. We used the free curriculum available through Junior Achievement after establishing our homeschool coop as a “school” and me as the volunteer. We then followed up with the REA and Sparknotes to review specific or difficult concepts.
Intro to Business DSST The e-book containing this title from Petersons was about all we used in a list of exams. There are numerous websites that are helpful if you need more studying.
Principles of Marketing CLEP Two-4 week study after Economics because there are several economics terms that overlap. We used the REA marketing book. These are also available

College Mathematics CLEP After any Algebra I course, this can be taken.
History of the US II CLEP
History of the Vietnam War DSST
Intro to the Modern Middle East DSST Resources for this one were hard to find. He used Idiots Guide to the Modern Middle East and followed with Instantcert Flashcards.
Rise and Fall of the Soviet Union DSST Read The Soviet Colossus and followed up reading about specific people in Wikipedia.
Western Europe since 1945 DSST Read PostWar  — a long read … he read the chapters that pertained to the years on the test and followed with InstantCert.
Environment and Humanity DSST
Macroeconomics CLEP Same resources as Microeconomics
Business Mathematics DSST 4-6 week course, independent of other exams except that basic economics and financial concepts are applied; Algebra I prerequisite. Business Math Demystified by  Allan G. Bluman (one chapter a day).  We also reviewed the free pdf download from Petersons.
English Literature CLEP A semester course using Switched on Schoolhouse British Lit CDs.  The name of this exam is English Lit, but they mean English in the British sense.  We followed up with Barron’s EZ-101 Study Keys for English Literature and relied on the Specific Feedback Forum available through Others have found success using The Great Courses: Classics of British Literature, and Sonlight’s British Literature Course.
Principles of Supervision DSST
Principles of Management CLEP
Organizational Behavior DSST
Introductory Sociology CLEP
Technical Writing DSST Having finished traditional high school English courses, my dd did this as a semester course. She focused on three resources. First: “The Elements of Technical Writing” . She also used the free resources from Learning Express (check your public library’s Online Database to see if they subscribe, giving you free access). On that site, she spent 20 minutes a day on a free pdf downloadable book within the “Career Center”. Titled: Business Writing Clear and Simple. The other resource was a self-paced online course called “Writing Skills for the Workplace”. You might do a double-check against the DSST test outline to verify that the resources are still a good match with the test. My dd is 22 now and she took this one in middle school.
Introductory Psychology CLEP
Human Growth and Development CLEP
Educational Psychology CLEP
College Algebra CLEP Test after completing Algebra II and review REA book. Note: Consider ALEKS for Intermediate and College Algebra.  Since it is approved by ACE, many colleges grant credit for the course, eliminating the need for taking the CLEP.
Principles of Statistics DSST My son worked independently for a semester through a typical public school Stats book and then tested (his dad is a math teacher).
Chemistry CLEP We completed a year Chemistry course by Beginnings Publishing and intended to follow with the REA book for test prep. However, both my students did not feel adequately prepared for this CLEP (we are not a science family … so by no means am I suggesting this curriculum is not adequate).

Category: Teaching/CLEP-Prep

Comments (2)

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  1. Mrs. Stenzel says:

    These ideas and more have helped my daughter earn 78 credits via CLEP and DSST testing while still in high school. Those credits along with the PSEO program have enabled her to earn her AA degree AND an AS degree in Business from Anoka Ramsey Community College before completing high school. She is now an 18 year old Junior at St. Cloud State University majoring in accounting! So far no student debt has been accumulated and we are hoping for her to complete her college plans without any! Thank you, Cheri, for all you have done to get the ball rolling so students can afford a college education.

  2. janice D. says:

    In the letters of my 13 yr old homeschooler – OMG!!! This is an awesome find. Thanks for taking the time to put this together for us. God bless you.