Looking for ways to make college affordable? Back when I attended, I was able to work my way through and earn enough money to pay my own tuition. Working all of those hours while taking a full course load was difficult but I did it! I graduated with my bachelor’s degree with zero debt.
That was more than a few years ago, however, and tuition rates have almost tripled since I was attending college. Is it even possible for our kids to attend college without accruing mind-numbing amounts of debt anymore? It isn’t easy but it is possible!
Ways to Make College Affordable
There are several ways to make college affordable. One way is called dual enrollment which means that a student takes college classes while they are in high school. Those classes count toward their high school and college transcript at the same time, which allows them to graduate earlier. Some states pay for students to be dual enrolled. (Check with the Department of Education in your state to see if your child qualifies to receive free tuition.)
Some students opt to attend a community college for the first two years of their higher education. The tuition is generally much lower at these institutions and it’s a great way to get your general education requirements fulfilled before transferring to a 4-year college or university.
Another way to save money on college costs is to earn some of your credits by testing out of courses. There are several ways to do this. One popular way is to take CLEP tests. College Board’s College-Level Examination Program or CLEP has been around for over 50 years and is accepted by 2,900 colleges and universities.
Earning college credit through tests is an excellent way to lower college costs. But how do students prepare to take these tests? I’ve recently learned about Study.com which is an affordable and convenient method for preparing to take these tests! I was given the opportunity to try their service for free and I was compensated for my time but I promise that I’m sharing my honest opinion with you. And later in this post, I will tell you how your family can try Study.com for free as well!
My boys have been using Study.com to take Social Psychology, Introduction to Criminal Justice, Digital Marketing & Advertising, and Abnormal Psychology and we are thrilled to report that they’ve been enjoying the classes. Study.com has over 4,100 video courses to choose from in areas such as science, psychology, English, business and more.
Study.com allows your student to take the following types of classes:
- Study.com’s CLEP test prep product which will allow the student to master the material needed for all 30 CLEP tests
- AP Test Prep
- CLEP/AP Practice Tests
- ACT/SAT Test Prep
- 144 college-level courses which have been recommended for college credit by American Council on Education (ACE) and the National College Credit Recommendation Service (NCCRS).
- Praxis Business Education Exam Prep
- Teacher Certification Test Prep
How to Use Study.com
1 – Choose a course
Your student can choose by subject or education level. Study.com also has a robust search engine which allows you to type any part of the course name in order to make it easy to find what you’re looking for.
2 – Add Course to Dashboard
Once you find a course which interests you, simply click the button to add it to your dashboard. After starting a new course, Study.com prompts the student to see if they’re interested in setting a finish date for the course. This is helpful because the service will then prompt the student by email or text to help them realize their goal. This is extremely helpful because then parents don’t need to nag our kids – the app will do it for us!
3 – Take the Course
Study.com provides short, interesting videos for the student to watch as well as complete text transcripts to read if they would rather. This allows students with varying learning styles to excel. After each lesson, the student takes a brief quiz to be sure they grasped the material. They are given instant feedback as well as the answers to all of the questions.
4 – Take the Test
After your student successfully completes the course, he has the option to take the test to receive college credit. Study.com has three different plans: Basic, Premium, and College Accelerator. Students who are part of the College Accelerator plan are able to take exams remotely and earn ACE and NCCRS credit from home. These credits can then be transferred to the college or university of their choice. Over 2,000 institutions accept this credit. They also have access to counselors who will help through the entire process!
One important note is that the entire family can use one account to take lessons on Study.com. But if you want your student to receive college credit by taking proctored final exams, they need to have their own account.
Benefits of Using Study.com
So, if you’re serious about finding ways to make college affordable, Study.com is a resource you’ll want to check out. Here are some of the benefits we’ve discovered:
- Enables students earn college credit at a fraction of the regular price
- Classes are self-paced
- Videos are engaging, easy to follow and get straight to the point
- Gives students the ability to create a personalized study plan complete with reminders to help them stay on track
- One monthly fee allows you to take as many classes as you would like
- Instant feedback after quizzes
- Allows you to test out of up to 2 years of college, cutting tuition costs in half
- Allows you to study for CLEP and AP tests as well as to earn ACE or NCCRS credits
- Familiarizes students with the types of questions that are asked on the actual exams
- Increases student confidence
- Has a mobile app so students can use the program with their phones
Try Study.com for Free!
If Study.com sounds like it might be a good fit for your family, be sure to sign up for their FREE 5-DAY TRIAL. And be sure to check out this scholarship opportunity as well, for the chance to receive $250-$500 toward pursuing CLEP credits!