Credit by Examination

Credit By Examination

These guidelines have been developed in alignment with SJSU Policies F15-5 and F15-11.

Academic credit may be earned through CBE for any department-approved SJSU 0-100 level course for which an equivalent CLEP exam is not available. Please check with the appropriate department chair to check whether CBE can be attempted for a given course before submitting a petition; if they wish to add a course that is not listed, they may be able to add it by consulting with the Department of Undergraduate Studies.

Currently, CBE is available for the following courses:

- AVIA 2, 62
- BCME 25
- EE 97
- ME 20, 110, 114, 147, 160, 165, 186
- TECH 41, 46

Credit earned from CBE is non-transferable and awarded on a Credit/No Credit basis; it can only be used to clear SJSU requirements and assist with progress towards a degree at SJSU. CBE can be attempted only once per course, up to a maximum of 30 units. This 30 unit maximum also includes course credit earned through CLEP examinations.

You earn credit by submitting a petition and then completing requirements set by the appropriate department. Many courses have a final exam; however, some courses can include other requirements such as a portfolio, lab component, or other work to demonstrate competency.

CBEs are created individually, so timelines can vary greatly. The process can take four or more months to complete. You will need to work closely with a professor in the appropriate department and complete all steps in the CBE process in a timely manner.

If you are seeking Credit By Examination, you must meet the following criteria:

    • You are a currently matriculated student at SJSU.
    • You cannot be enrolled in the course, and have never received a grade (other than W) for the course or an equivalent course.
    • You can only use the course towards completion of degree requirements at SJSU.
    • You have never attempted CBE for the course before.
    • You have fewer than the maximum of 30 units allowed for CBE/CLEP credit.

If you meet all of the above criteria, download the CBE petition to begin the process. 


Student Guide to CBE:
(Faculty: click here for more information)

    1. Download a CBE Petition. Print and complete Part 1 of the form.
    2. Consult with the appropriate department. Ask the chair if the course is available for CBE, then speak to the professor who administers CBE. Give the professor both parts of the petition; they will complete Part 2 and return the completed petition to you.
    3. Submit the completed form as a PDF to no later than Week 8 of the current semester (28 days after the deadline to add classes). Late submissions will not be accepted. Allow up to 3-5 weeks for processing.
    4. You will receive payment information from the Testing Office. Once your payment is confirmed, forward your e-mail receipt to Allow 2-3 weeks for processing.
    5. You will receive an e-mail from the Testing Office with further instructions. Since CBEs are generated individually, instructions may vary. Read the e-mail carefully and follow all instructions.
    6. Complete the exam and/or any associated work within the timeframe specified in the e-mail.After you complete the exam, allow time for your instructor to grade your exam and submit a final grade to
    7. Final grades will be processed 4 weeks after your instructor submits the final grade. If that processing time extends beyond the end of the current semester, it will be posted next semester.