Common Course Numbers, Special Exams

Common Course Numbers

All universities and colleges in the North Dakota University System (NDUS) have agreed on Common Course Numbers (CCNs) for many of the courses they have in common. A list of the common courses can be found on the North Dakota University System website at:

Special Examinations for Credit

A regularly enrolled student may apply to take “special” (challenge or validating) examinations to establish credit for approved University courses. Requests to take an examination must be made to the chair of the department offering the course. Approval of the department chair, the instructor of the course and the dean of the college offering the course(s) are required. A petition with the appropriate signatures must be submitted to the Office of the Registrar prior to examinations. A committee of three appointed by the chair of the department offering the course will administer and evaluate the examinations, a majority being necessary to award a grade. Special examinations must be searching and comprehensive. Grades of “Satisfactory” or “Unsatisfactory” will be recorded on the student’s permanent record upon recommendation of the committee, but will not be used to compute scholastic average.

The fee per credit hour for a validating or challenge examination is one-half the regular credit hour fee for the course to be challenged. Receipt of payment must be presented to the instructor prior to examination.

Students may apply to take challenge or validating examinations to establish credit in University of North Dakota courses that correspond to work taken at institutions that are not regionally accredited, or for courses in which they have superior preparation or knowledge gained through prior learning or independent study. These exams are offered for courses which have no equivalent CLEP subject exams. Students who have audited a course, or who have previously enrolled in a course and then dropped it, will not ordinarily be permitted to take a special examination in that course.

College-Level Examination Program

The University of North Dakota offers the opportunity to submit the results of CLEP for credit in most of the Subject Examinations.

CLEP Subject Examinations currently accepted by UND for transfer credits with minimum acceptable standard scores can be found at: Credit earned through CLEP Subject Exams may be used to fulfill University Essential Studies requirements, to fulfill specific course requirements, or to be used as elective credits. CLEP credit will not satisfy Essential Studies Special Emphasis requirements. As soon as they become available, new examinations will be reviewed by University departments to determine their suitability for credit at UND.

The following guidelines have been established for utilization of the Subject Examinations:

  1. A CLEP Subject Examination may not be taken to establish credit for a course in which a student has earned credit in a higher level sequential course.
  2. Regarding CLEP Subject Examinations which offer a maximum of six to eight credits, a student with previously earned credit in one semester of a two-semester sequence must petition the CLEP Advanced Placement Committee for exception to this policy prior to taking the CLEP Subject Examination for the balance of the credit.
  3. A Subject Examination may be repeated no sooner than six months after date of the last testing. Students should submit a petition to the UND CLEP Committee for permission to repeat an examination.
  4. A Subject Examination may not be taken to establish credit in a subject in which the student has been enrolled, but from which he or she has withdrawn after the last day to add a course, until six months from the last class day of the term in which he/she was enrolled for the course.
  5. A Subject Examination may not be used to establish credit in a subject which the student has previously failed. In addition, a Subject Exam may not be used to repeat a course.
  6. CLEP credit is considered as equivalent to credit earned at another institution. UND students must earn 30 credits at UND. UND uses the ACE Recommended Credit-Granting Score as a guide to determine whether credit is granted.
  7. For a listing of approved examinations, required scores, and transfer equivalents, go to:

Foreign Language Placement & Credit Test

Students with a background in a foreign language that is currently taught in the Department of Modern & Classical Languages & Literatures at UND, may receive credit in one of the following ways:

  1. Lateral credits will be offered to students who want to get credit for previous experience and take additional language acquisition courses.  Students with at least two years of language instruction in high school will be placed in the appropriate language course.  Following the successful completion (e.g. a grade of at least “B” in LANG 102 or higher) of at least two courses at the next proficiency level in the language taken at UND, the lateral credits will be awarded.
  2. Credits earned through the College Level Examination Program (CLEP) exam will be offered to students who want to get credit for previous language experience without taking additional courses (see UND CLEP listing).
  3. Credits earned through the completion of the transfer credit equivalent to the language credit at UND will be awarded.
  4. Credits earned through the completion of a French, German, Latin, or Spanish Advanced Placement course will be awarded with the appropriate test score.  AP credit is normally equivalent to Levels I and II (LANG 101 and LANG 102) in that language (AP Listing).

Receiving these credits will enable the student to:

  1. Apply them toward the total number of credits required for graduation, and
  2. Apply them, where applicable, toward fulfillment of Essential Studies Humanities requirements. For example, 101/102/201/202 courses in all languages taught at UND fulfill 4 credits each toward the Humanities requirement of the Fine Arts & Humanities Breadth of Knowledge category of Essential Studies. (Note: Lateral and test credits do NOT count toward fulfillment of the Special Emphasis requirements in Essential Studies.)
  3. Apply them toward the major, minor, or certificate in one of the language programs, International Studies, or any other degree with a language requirement.

Native speakers of a language other than English, who wish to take classes in that language, may enroll without special permission in any 400-level course, or in any 300-level course that emphasizes literary or cultural topics. Incoming students whose native language (as indicated on their TOEFL exam) is one offered at UND should consult with the Chair of the Department of Modern & Classical Languages & Literature about automatic approval.