Ways to Earn College Credit

High School Courses & Work Experience May Have Earned You College Credit!

Marian University wants each student to have a meaningful and impactful experience and we recognize that there are different paths to college.  Whether you are a high school graduate exploring universities or a military veteran ready to work on your bachelor’s degree, Marian recognizes and rewards those with previous college-level coursework and professional experience.  Work with your admission counselor on your specific situation and discover ways your hard work may have already earned you college credit.

College Readiness

Admission to freshmen standing at Marian assumes at least 17 units of high school credit including at least four units of English, two of mathematics, one of laboratory science, and one of history. Foreign language is recommended but not required.

Marian University encourages students to challenge themselves throughout high school and welcomes those who have gone above and beyond in their academics by taking Advanced Placement (AP), College Level Courses (CAPP), or International Baccalaureate (IB) courses. Typically, the 11th grade is the optimal time to start taking this course work if it is offered at your school. It’s a good idea to study subjects in which you are confident you will do well while at the same time seeking opportunities to challenge yourself.

What is Advanced Standing?

As a result of having already successfully completed college-level work, some students can be admitted with advanced standing at the university. By succeeding in rigorous academics before you enroll at Marian University, you demonstrate that you are more than prepared to succeed. However, in addition to completing your AP/IB course(s), you must also perform successfully on the exam and earn a high score. Advanced Standing is only granted to students who have high exam scores.

Credit by Examination – AP, CLEP, and DSST

Marian University recognizes that learning may take place outside a classroom setting and will grant up to 30 undergraduate credits for learning demonstrated through direct assessment (examination).

Recognized assessments include:

  • Advanced Placement (score of 3 or better)
  • College Level Examination Program (CLEP)
  • DANTES Subject Standardized Test (DSST)

Students must demonstrate that they meet or exceed the standard for college-level learning in order to receive credit by examination.

*Students can apply a total of 30 credits of any combination of credit by examination or experiential learning credit toward the undergraduate degree.

Getting Started

Because you have knowledge gained through experience equivalent to one or more college courses, the CLEP and DSST examinations offer students currently enrolled at Marian University, or any non-Marian students who will be having their scores sent to another institution, the opportunity to earn credit for that knowledge.

Admissions counselors work with students in the admission process to identify and appropriately award credit for prior learning demonstrated through AP, CLEP, and/or DSST examinations taken prior to applying to Marian University. Once enrolled, students are encouraged to work with their Academic Advisor to identify college-level learning that could be demonstrated through CLEP and DSST examination.

Advanced Placement courses will be accepted with a required test score of three or better. For a complete listing of Advanced Placement program equivalences, click here.

Considerations for the award of credit include:

  • The educational quality of the learning experience, validated through direct assessment via recognized examination processes;
  • The comparability of the nature, content, and level of the learning experience to that offered by Marian University; and
  • The appropriateness and applicability of the learning experience to the programs offered by Marian University, in light of the student’s educational goals.

For more information regarding credit by examination, please contact the Center for Academic Support & Excellence (CASE) Office at caseoffice@marianuniversity.edu or 920-923-8097.

Dual Credit

The Marian University Dual Credit Program allows high school juniors and seniors the opportunity to earn college credit in introductory level courses and provide them a head start in their college careers. These courses are taught in a high school setting by qualified high school instructors.  Students find the program both challenging and beneficial in reaching their educational goals.

Dual Credit Program courses taught in the high school carry the same course number and credit weight as the comparable course taught at Marian University. In addition, the same academic standards are expected ensuring the dual credit courses provide college level experience for students. The course requirements, syllabus, textbook and faculty evaluations are all identical to the course offered on the campus. Click here for more Benefits of Dual Credit

The application fee has been waived for all Dual Credit Program applications.  Dual Credit students will register for semester only courses and/or courses that are fall and spring semesters through MyMarian.  Course registration must be completed no later than September 1 of the academic year.  Course registration  for spring only courses must be completed no later than January 15 of the academic year.  Failure to do so will result in non-enrollment.

Tuition for all Dual Credit Program courses is $150 per credit and will be billed directly to each student’s home address.  Any financial questions should be directed to the university’s Business Office at 920-923-8520.

Marian University establishes an official transcript for each student enrolled in a Dual Credit Program course.  High School instructors assign and submit final grades to the university’s Office of the Registrar.  Credits earned and grades received become part of the official transcript and count automatically towards degree requirements for students who subsequently enroll at Marian. Credits may be transferrable to other universities and colleges, though policies for accepting transfer credits vary at different institutions. Marian can make no guarantees regarding transfer of credits; students should consult individual institutions and programs concerning transfer credits. Transcripts are $3 per copy and can be requested through your My Marian account. Instructions are provided to students.

The student must submit a completed Marian University application for admission indicating non-degree seeking status. The application information is used to build the student’s academic record, which allows for course registration, grading, and academic transcript. Students will receive log in credentials to access MyMarian accounts upon acceptance.


Participating students must:

  • Have taken appropriate prerequisite course(s), where applicable
  • Achieve a grade point average of “B” within the appropriate discipline
  • Rank in the top 25% of their class OR be earning a GPA of 3.2 on a 4.0 scale, OR score in the top 25% of the most recent standardized test (PSAT or ACT)

Printed versions of documents on this page are available upon request.
Please contact Sue Fuerbringer at srfuerbringer74@marianuniversity.edu or 920.926.6709.

Credit for Prior Education and Work Experience

Whether you have several years of work experience, or are a military veteran, Marian University recognizes that you may come to college with unique, college-level learning experiences. And we think you should get credit for that learning. Marian University has designed pathways for credit for prior learning that will maximize the credit applied to your degree – and maximize your engagement in learning new knowledge, new skills, and new ways of understanding yourself and the world around you.

Prior education is any learning experience that:

  • Results in college-level learning outcomes;
  • Is comparable to the quality, nature, content, and level of learning provided at Marian University;
  • Is appropriate and applies to your degree program, in light of your educational needs; and/or
  • Is recognized by Marian University as college-level prior education, and may result in the award of credit towards your degree

There are several ways that you can demonstrate your prior education. Marian University has processes in place to evaluate evidence of learning, including:

The evaluation of prior education begins in the admission process. You’ll work with Marian staff to review transcripts and results of exams of college level learning you may have already taken. Admission counselors will also explore your learning history and recommend additional actions, such as testing or experiential learning assessment, that can result in the award of credit for prior learning.

The Office of the Registrar will determine the award of transfer credit based on articulation agreements and faculty review of transcripts (as needed). Marian University’s Academic Testing Center, in the Center for Academic Support and Excellence (CASE), can help you register for college-level learning exams and prepare for testing.

Any credit awarded for prior education will be documented on your official Marian University transcript once admitted as a student.

Credit for Experiential Learning

Marian University recognizes that learning may take place outside a classroom setting and will therefore grant up to 30 undergraduate credits for prior learning based on individual evaluation in accordance with the following policy:

The student must provide evidence of learning through experience outside of a classroom

  • The kind of evidence or documentation required is determined by the nature of the learning and following the recommendations of the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL)
  • To be eligible for credit, learning must be comparable to that which occurs in a course or courses in the Marian University catalog. Other learning may be acceptable based on its relationship to college-level learning and the student’s educational goals
  • Marian University faculty members with expertise in the related academic area evaluate for credit the evidence of prior learning that is presented.

The Process:

After applying for admission, students who wish to seek credit for prior learning will proceed as follows:

  • Consult with an admission counselor and academic advisor to design a pathway to degree-completion and how seeking credit for prior learning will contribute to that pathway.
    • Together, the academic advisor and the student will determine a plan and submit a petition for credit.
  • Develop and submit Petition for Credit for Prior Learning for faculty review
    • Petition submission must include copy of current resume.
  • Submit supplemental support materials at the request of faculty reviewer.

Contact Information

Transfer Credit Evaluation
Office of the Registrar