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 BA in 4 Weeks

Unauthorized reproduction prohibited


Copyright   Lawrie Miller  1997 - 2004

















"You may have already seen this, but if not, I thought you might enjoy it


 'A National Guard sergeant once crammed for, took, and passed three GRE exams in a row, thereby earning 90 semester units in ten and a half hours of testing. Then he took five CLEP exams in two days, and earned 30 more units, which was enough to earn an accredited bachelor degree (from what is now Excelsior College), start to finish, in 18 hours, starting absolutely from scratch with no college credit.'

page 73 of Bear's Guide to Earning Degrees by Distance Learning 14th edition


Perhaps you should add a "BA in 18 Hours" section to your website"


Hi _____


Yes, I know about this. Unfortunately, this is no longer possible due to changes in exam availability. It is also made much harder by the current requirements for the GRE at Excelsior. At one time you would be awarded 39 semester hours credit for a pass above the 35th percentile. If you can place one thought in front of the other, you should be able to hit the 35th percentile. Then this was amended to 30 credits for a pass above the 35th percentile. Still a bargain. Now it is 30 credits for a pass above the 80th percentile. So, it's gotten much, much, more difficult. Still perfectly possible of course, but you really do have to know the subject well.


COSC still give 18 and 24 credit hours for a pass above the 40th percentile in the GRE subject exams, but most of that is lower level credit.













"Which university offers the most life experience credit? I have a varied background and would like to take advantage of my travel, training, and work experience. "




No life experience credit as such, I'm afraid. Credit can only be awarded or earned by credit transfer from a regionally accredited institution, from a foreign institution (once credit has been properly evaluated for equivalency), for some ACE evaluated certifications, or otherwise earned by demonstration of competencies.


Competency in a subject can be demonstrated by sitting and passing a prescribed standardized exam, or by submission of a portfolio which provides evidence of your proficiency in a subject that has a corollary in some in some college level course offered by a regionally accredited institution. See the introduction in BA in 4 Weeks for further definition and examples of the portfolio process. Link to introduction below.


Lawrie Miller

BA in 4 Weeks















"Could you clarify a few things for me? Excelsior will accept 30 post-degree credits towards a second bachelors even if your first degree is not from Excelsior? I have at least thirty undergraduate and graduate credits not related to my first degree since receiving the undergraduate degree. What else would I need to do, if anything? Would this be as simple as it sounds? Basically applying to the school and transferring over the credit?"


The requirement is that a second degree candidate complete at least one quarter of required credits for the second degree, and that (I think) at least 21 of these be in the new major/concentration.


Now, since most bachelor degrees at Excelsior are 120 semester hours, this translates to presenting 30 hours of new learning, where "new" learning is in the form of credit earned after completion of the first bachelor degree.


Additionally, the 30 "new" credits will have to have COHESION with respect to the degree major or concentration (and the degree as a whole where 9 of the 30 credits are used as filler [[that is, where you present only 21 new credits in the new concentration and use 9 old credits to complete the 30, PLUS, present the other require 9 new credits as any appropriate arts/science credit]]). Note again, that I think the minimum credit in the new major/concentration is 21 credits of the 30 total required. This from memory, so should be checked.


That explanation is  a bit of a dog's breakfast, but basically, if you present 30 "new" credits comprising a new concentration that meet program requirements, you get the second degree.


If you are going for a MAJOR in, say, Business, then the requirement for new credit is still 30 semester hours, but the Business credit requirement for that particular degree, is 45 credits. If you have the appropriate 15 Business credits in your first degree, you need only apply the 30 remaining business credits.


If you do not have any appropriate Business credit, then, clearly, you are going to have to supply all of the 45 required Business credits. Additionally, in the Business program (for example), there is a 3 credit "Ethics" requirement, 3 credit statistics requirement, and a 6 credit arts/science requirement for macro and micro economics. Now, if you already have these in your first degree - fine, if not, you will have to supply them.


So, the second degree is most economically earned as a degree with CONCENTRATION, requiring a straight 30 semester hours. The credit must meet concentration requirements in terms of depth and breadth. It cannot be just any 30 credits. A Concentration, by definition, must have structure.


Concentrations are available in a wide variety of disciplines, some of which can be completed using the 2hr 50min $130, GRE subject exams. However, if you have credit that already meets concentration requirements, and that credit was earned after your first degree was conferred, and the proposed concentration of the second degree is substantially different from the first degree, then I do not see that you will have a problem.


Apply, pays you money,  takes your choice, and . . . congratulations on earning your second degree. A fine achievement. Well done!


Cost? If you already have all required credit, then about $1300. Around $850 enrollment plus around $440, graduation fee. I received my two degree diplomas about a week or so after conferral. 


Most easily earned and most flexible second degree for most people is probably the BS or BA with Concentration in Psychology. I detail this in the BA in 4 Weeks Second Degree guide.




Web site copyright Lawrie Miller 2004