Alternative Ways to Earn College Credit

High school students are encouraged to participate in Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), and College Level Exam Program (CLEP). Rigorous preparation enhances college preparedness and gives students an opportunity to obtain college credit.


Although neither SAT nor ACT scores are required for any applicants, we encourage international students to sit for these exams. An SAT I, SAT II, and/or ACT exam can help students meet the English Language Proficiency Requirement, have appropriate placement in classes, or meet admission requirements in the case of a GPA below our minimum requirement.

Advanced Placement

Students who complete college-level work in high school under the AP Program—sponsored by the College Board—and who receive creditable scores in exams administered by that board may, upon admission to Portland State, be granted credit toward a bachelor's degree in comparable college courses.

International Baccalaureate

Students who complete IB exams and receive creditable scores may, upon admission to Portland State, be granted credit toward a bachelor's degree.

College Level Exam Program

The College Level Exam Program (CLEP) offers subject matter examinations and general examinations. CLEP subject or general examinations may be taken prior to entering the University. If the individual passes a CLEP examination, the University accepts the amount of credit indicated in this chart, but only after admission is granted and the student is (or has been) enrolled in Portland State courses.

Earning College Credit for Military Training

It is possible to receive credit for military training, including basic training. Portland State will award credit to admitted students for military training based on the recommendations from the .

College Credit in High School

If you have taken college classes while still enrolled in high school (e.g. Running Start) you will be considered a first year applicant. College work will likely to transfer to PSU; however, official college transcripts, in addition to high school transcripts, must be submitted for college credit to be evaluated for transfer. Students earning college credit in Oregon or Southwest Washington are encouraged to use to preview how credits transfer to PSU. Credits from all other out-of-state colleges will be evaluated on a per-case basis after admission. College credit earned via Assessment Based Learning (e.g. Willamette Promise) typically transfers as General Lower Division credit and cannot be used to satisfy Portland State's university writing requirements.

Willamette Promise credits earned in Fall 2018 or later are considered transfer credits from Western Oregon University (WOU). Applicants should request an official transcript be sent from WOU to Portland State to ensure that Willamette Promise credit is successfully transferred. This change is effective for students enrolling at Portland State for Fall 2021 and later.