1/9/17 – Straighterline – Intro to Religion

The UCard continues to pay off. I saved another $8.75 on ProctorU scheduling my Intro to Religion final exam with only 50 minutes notice.

I passed the final exam with a 92% giving me a 94% for the entire class.

My first impression of Straighterline was very good compared to Saylor. I like the format, the ebook, and breezed through Intro to Religion (in fairness, this is a topic I know a lot about already).

I signed up for American Government and found another coupon code, albeit a smaller one. $158.56 for the class and ebook for this one. (Not complaining – probably cheaper than even the textbook for a brick and mortar college, also it includes the cost of proctoring the final exam).

More on that and continued progress on TEEX tomorrow.


1/3/17 – Saylor, ProctorU, and Principles of Management

So my plan was to take another ALEKS assessment, but the other two are still showing “Pending Organization Review” in ACE. I decided to hold off from taking another assessment until those are showing complete.

In the meantime, I decided to take an exam through Saylor Academy. They offer all of their content for free, the only thing you need to pay for is to have an exam proctored for credit. ($25 per exam)


Since I’m currently in management, I decided to go for Principles of Management. The reading for this class is so voluminous I can’t imagine how long it would take someone to read it all. If it wasn’t on a topic I was already comfortable with, I’m not sure I would have gone forward with it, and might have selected another exam.

To prepare, I took the quizzes at the end of each section, took the practice exam (72%) and then decided to take the proctored exam right away while it was fresh in my mind.

To take the proctored exam, you need to go to ProctorU. Again, I was able to sign up in a few minutes on my phone, but it might be easier from a desktop or laptop.


I splurged for the additional $25 “fast track” since I plan to take a bunch of exams there and have a very busy schedule. I created a “Ucard” in a few minutes to make life easier and scheduled my exam for 8:30pm. I was done by 9:10pm. I would say that I nailed the theory of the content, but didn’t know some of the management pioneers by name as well as some of the acronyms.

I scored a 71%. Made it, barely, but 3 more credits down for $50 and maybe 3-4 hours. Hopefully more ALEKS tomorrow.


1/2/17 – Ethics 312, The Institutes

Since I am ahem, frugal, I wanted to stick with free or nearly free sources of credit as long as possible. It would be nice to knock out a semester’s worth of credit spending only $19.95.

The Institutes provides a free learning module on Ethics and the CPCU (Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter) Code of Professional Conduct. There are two options – I chose the free one, as I am not looking for CE (Continuing Education) credit.


It is a ton of information and not exactly a breeze, but I was able to get through it in about four to five hours and pass with 42 of 50 correct answers (84%). There isn’t much of a way around it other than to read through all the modules and take the test at the end.

When you’re finished, don’t forget to head back over to ACE and request credit for the test.

Two days & three exams down and I’ve only spent $19.95. Tomorrow – more ALEKS.

1/1/17 – ACE & ALEKS

It’s the first day of the new year and I want to complete my degree as quickly and inexpensively as possible. To accomplish this, I plan to take as many credit-granting tests as possible. Since I’m not enrolled at a college yet, I need a place to “store” all those credits – a transcript.


Luckily, the American Council on Education “ACE” does just this. I registered at the ACE CREDIT website in about five minutes on my phone, although I would recommend doing it on a desktop or laptop. I plan to use this system to keep track of many of my completed tests. Later on, for a small fee, they’ll send my transcript to the university I plan to graduate from.

Now, I’m not one to wait to take action, so I wanted to take a test right away to get started and prove that I can do this. I went over to Aleks.com and got signed up to knock out some math requirements. You pay a $19.95/month monthly fee but can take as many assessments as you want. To receive ACE credit, you need to manage a 70% or greater on each course. Here are more detailed instructions.

Once registered, you assign yourself to a class and take an initial assessment to see how much you know and how much you need to learn. If you get 70% or greater on this initial assessment, you’re done! You can go right to ACE and request credit for the course.

My goal is to knock out all the math-related assessments I can get credit for in the first 30 days then cancel my subscription.

In high school, I made it all the way through Calculus, but it’s still been about 15 years since I’ve taken any algebra. I brushed up quickly using a couple of online resources (which I’ll talk about more later) and managed an 83% on Beginning Algebra and 72% on Intermediate Algebra.

Bam, done. A couple hours factoring equations, calculating slopes of lines and distributing exponents and two tests are done. 6 credits. (Based on the major I’m planning, I probably won’t be able to use Beginning Algebra, but that doesn’t mean you can’t – more on that later.)