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Challenge Exam Overview

Challenge Exam fees are $50.00 per credit.  There is a $10.00 non-refundable registration fee due in advance of scheduling.

Challenge Exam request forms:

For a Syllabus click on the links below:

What is a Challenge Exam?

If you feel that your background, education, and experience have given you sufficient knowledge in a subject area, you may challenge certain courses. Earning course credit through Challenge Examinations is equivalent to passing a cumulative, end-of-the-term examination or a series of comparable exams. Examinations will vary depending on the type of course challenged. An instructor of the College recommended by the appropriate Academic Area Dean develops the examination. Each academic area selects which courses are available for challenge and may have academic area-specific screening procedures to determine a student’s eligibility to take the Challenge exam. Challenge exams are not available as an option if other proficiency examinations such as CLEP are available.

A Challenge Exam cannot be taken for the following purposes:

  • To expunge a failure in a course at Northern Essex Community College or elsewhere.
  • To attempt to raise a low grade in a course at Northern Essex Community College or elsewhere.
  • To erase a previously obtained unsatisfactory score on any of the subject examinations.

Challenge Exam Process:

If you desire to pursue a challenge exam you must be able to describe briefly the experiences that provided you with the knowledge and skills relevant to the course being challenged. Upon receipt of your application with academic area approval, and your payment for this service, your exam is scheduled. After a successful challenge, course credit is awarded with a grade of P (Pass).

Steps for Registration:

  1. Complete Section 1 of the Challenge Examination Registration Form and submit it to the Credit for Life Learning in the Technology Center, Room TC-128 at the Haverhill Campus. Staff will process your request to the appropriate academic area. Using your registration form, We will notify you by mail of the academic area’s response to your request.
  2. After approval of your request by the academic area, your verification of payment initiates the assignment of an examiner. A $10.00 non-refundable registration fee is due in advance of scheduling. The fee is $50.00 per credit hour (for a 3-credit course it would be $150.00 and for a 4-credit course it would be $200.00). When staff receives your verification of payment, they will request that an examiner be assigned by the academic area and will notify the examiner to start the exam process. Staff will notify you of the time, date and place of the exam.
  3. Complete the exam. If you are unable to take the exam on the scheduled date and time, you are responsible to reschedule an appropriate time with the examiner. You must take the Challenge exam no later than one month after the initial scheduled date. The examiner will submit a grade report to both our area and the Registrar within seventy-two hours after completion of the exam. Staff will notify you of the exam results.

If you have any questions, please contact:
Donna Felisberto
978-556-3410
dfelisberto@necc.mass.edu