2023-2024 Catalog

Course Credit by Examination

In order to stimulate a maximum amount of effort and progress in students of high scholastic achievement and capacity for self-directed study, the faculty provides an opportunity to pass by examination many of the courses within the curriculum. It is recognized that not all courses (e.g., independent study) nor all subject matter fields lend themselves equally to such an approach. Students seeking to take specified courses through examination are required to consult with departments and instructors for information as to content and coverage.

Credit by Examination may only be undertaken by consent of the instructor in the course. In courses where multiple sections are scheduled during a semester or in different semesters, the approval of the departmental chair is also required. Students seeking Credit by Examination should secure the necessary forms from the Registrar.

A student may take one course by examination in any semester either as a substitute for a course or in addition to a normal load, which if passed would count toward the total number of units required for graduation, provided the following standards are met.

  1. The student must have received no grade lower than a B in the two previous semesters at Occidental. 
  2. Preparation for the examination must be undertaken by the student independently and individually, as directed by the instructor involved, and the student will not be allowed to prepare for the examination by class attendance as an auditor in the regular course. 
  3. A student may not apply for Credit by Examination in a course in which previously enrolled for all or part of a semester, or in a course audited in a previous semester. 
  4. After a date is set for the examination, the student cannot be excused from taking the examination at that time except for reasons of health or grave emergency. Failure to take the examination will result in a recorded grade of "F." With the consent of the instructor, Credit by Examination may be taken on a Credit/No Credit basis. 
  5. A grade must be submitted to the registrar for recording as Credit by Examination, which becomes part of the student’s permanent record. 
  6. In a semester when the student is enrolled for fewer than 11 units, a fee for Credit by Examination will be assessed to the student account.