Transform the learning you have achieved through life or work experiences into college credit today.
Use alternative pathways to earn credit at USC Upstate for prior learning for workplace training, military training, world language experience, technology credentials, and more.
Credit for Workplace Training and Certifications
Explore the ACE National Guide (PDF)
to credit for workplace training and certifications. If you have been awarded a Credly digital badge for training and certifications, request your Credly Transcript, and have it sent to the University of South Carolina Upstate at email@example.com.
Credit by Exam
USC Upstate accepts credit for ACTFL, AP, CLEP, DSST (DANTES), ECE, German Abitur, IB, and UExcel exam scores. In addition, you may contact the department that offers a particular course to complete a challenge exam, which is a cumulative final exam, in a variety of courses to earn credit. Example courses include Introduction to Computer Technology, English Composition I, and Spanish: Topics in Conversation.
Click on plus button at the bottom of this Accordion BLOCK (not accordion tab) to create a new tab. Select Accordion TAB block to edit tab headline. Select nested blocks within accordion tab to edit content.
Both nationally standardized exams, like AP, IB, and CLEP, as well as USC Upstate course-specific exams can be used to earn credit for your college-level knowledge of various fields. These exams are a good fit for you if you have had an opportunity to learn general education course topics at advanced levels.
Send Scores from Exam Services
Exam services provide official transcripts or score reports. Please request that reports are sent firstname.lastname@example.org or search for the University of South Carolina Upstate, 800 University Way, Spartanburg, SC, 29303 in the list of colleges and universities.
- AP Exams (Use SUC Upstate institution code #5850)
- CLEP Exams (Use USC Upstate institution code #5850)
- DSST (DANTES) Exams (Exam results are also reported on your free Joint Services Transcript.)
- ECE or UExcel (Excelsior College) Exams (Service ended in 2022.)
- IB Exams
Request a Challenge Exam for a USC Upstate Course
In some common USC Upstate courses, learning outcomes can be easily evaluated with a cumulative final exam. Some examples are ENGL U101, world language courses, and introduction to computer technology. If you have college-level experience and preparation in a course topic, but you did not have the opportunity to complete a dual enrollment, AP, IB or other program that would give you college credit for your experience, you may request a Challenge Exam to demonstrate your skills and knowledge in a course offered at USC Upstate.
Challenge exams cost $25 per credit hour of the course (typically $75) and are administered and graded by USC Upstate course instructors. You must earn a B or higher on the exam to be awarded credit for the course. Request challenge exams and receive exam instructions and any study materials from the department that offers the course.
Credit for Experience in World Languages
Find a range of options for earning credit for your prior language learning in over 120 world languages.
Credit by Portfolio
When you have already learned the material taught in a specific USC Upstate course that is required in your degree plan, but you do not have any certificate to verify your learning, you may demonstrate your learning by preparing a portfolio. The scope of your learning must be the equivalent of a college-level course, including both underlying theory and concepts as well as practical applications. Your portfolio will provide a narrative explaining and documenting the ways your prior learning and experience fulfill the learning outcomes of your chosen course. First, complete the Request for Portfolio Credit Form below (sign in with your USC Upstate email username and password). When approved, enroll in the one-credit UNIV U210 course to prepare your portfolio with the guidance of a faculty member.