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  • DTP Success Team

DSST Exam Pass Rates

Updated: May 8


DSST Exam Pass rates for Fiscal Year 2023 and 2022.
Fiscal Year: 2023 and 2022

DSST (DANTES Subject Standardized Tests)


In today's fast-paced world of education and career advancement, standardized testing plays a crucial role in assessing students' knowledge and skills.


Among the various exam options available, DSST (DANTES Subject Standardized Tests) is an invaluable opportunity for students seeking to earn college credits efficiently and reduce their student debt.


Let's explore the DSST pass rates and their significance.



 


Table of Contents




 


What are DSST Exams?


DSST Exam Pass rates for Fiscal Year 2021.
Fiscal Year: 2021

DSST Exams


DSST Exams provide a streamlined route to bypass traditional classes and earn college credit by showcasing proficiency in diverse subjects.


These exams cover a broad spectrum of topics, allowing students to test out of humanities, social sciences, business, math, and science classes.


With over 30 exams available, DSST exams provide a convenient and efficient option for learners to validate their expertise.



 
By passing DSST Exams, students can save money and fast-track their degree program without spending time in the classroom.
 


The Importance of Exam Pass Rates


DSST Exam Pass rates for Fiscal Year 2020.
Fiscal Year: 2020

DSST Pass Rate Advantage


Testing out of your general education units will play a big part in your education, and DSST exam pass rates are a significant piece of that puzzle.


Understanding how many students pass these exams is crucial because it gives us insights into what to expect.


Unfortunately, DANTES has stopped disclosing pass rates for civilians.


However, it's important to note that civilian pass rates have historically been higher than the military's.


A significant advantage for military members is the opportunity to take DSST exams for free.


However, this benefit often leads military test takers to attempt exams with minimal preparation.


While this approach varies among individuals, it can potentially contribute to the overall lower pass rates observed in the military cohort compared to their civilian counterparts.


Conversely, civilian test takers, who bear the cost of their exams, exhibit historically higher pass rates.


The financial investment in the examination process tends to motivate civilians to engage in more rigorous study practices.


As a result, they typically demonstrate higher levels of preparedness, contributing to their overall success in DSST exams.



 
It's essential not to view these statistics as the ultimate indicator of success.
 


We've gathered the military passage rates for each course you'll need and those you might want to look at.


It is possible that the DSST Military Passage rates "may" be a good predictor of how complex or straightforward an exam will be.


And if you're anything like most students, you probably want to know which exams are the easiest and have the highest passage rates.


Generally, a lower passage rate indicates a more challenging test, and a higher passage rate indicates a more straightforward exam.


However, this is not always the case, so use them as rough guidelines.



 
Another significant indicator is the number of questions you must answer correctly to pass your DSST exam.
 


DSST Exam Pass Rates


Two US Military members walking.

Military Pass Rates


DSST Exam Title

FY 2023

FY 2022

FY 2021

FY 2020

FY 2019

FY 2018

64%

​67%

​49%

47%

43%

61%

8%

​14%

​10%

16%

4%

19%

37%

​41%

33%

24%

30%

52%

87%

​92%

​61%

55%

​51%

54%

Business Mathematics

18%

​28%

57%

86%

43%

55%

75%

​72%

​65%

66%

79%

78%

77%

​69%

​71%

73%

69%

72%

71%

​76%

63%

60%

52%

51%

62%

​66%

55%

53%

51%

54%

78%

68%

​66%

90%

81%

n/a


DSST Exam Title

FY 2023

FY 2022

FY 2021

FY 2020

FY 2019

FY 2018

55%

​42%

​47%

29%

23%

64%

Fundamentals of College Algebra

7%

​17%

​18%

17%

13%

10%

40%

​57%

18%

6%

5%

24%

58%

​68%

73%

73%

76%

76%

54%

​58%

36%

49%

44%

63%

78%

​74%

77%

74%

70%

75%

48%

​54%

​51%

73%

70%

52%

Human Cultural Geography

n/a

​n/a

​n/a

n/a

n/a

37%

57%

​60%

​60%

61%

57%

58%

81%

​81%

70%

66%

84%

81%


DSST Exam Title

FY 2023

FY 2022

FY 2021

FY 2020

FY 2019

FY 2018

41%

​46%

41%

29%

34%

n/a

18%

​18%

​14%

8%

6%

n/a

77%

77%

​77%

72%

72%

63%

38%

​31%

45%

62%

55%

61%

69%

62%

​58%

53%

48%

48%

64%

​78%

57%

62%

73%

66%

Math for Liberal Arts

18%

​25%

​19%

5%

5%

5%

59%

​65%

​67%

62%

49%

54%

45%

​48%

47%

43%

39%

39%

70%

​71%

71%

70%

71%

75%


DSST Exam Title

FY 2023

FY 2022

FY 2021

FY 2020

FY 2019

FY 2018

53%

​48%

​52%

47%

45%

43%

50%

​57%

14%

22%

24%

25%

62%

​62%

59%

73%

56%

65%

Principles of Statistics

30%

​32%

​34%

37%

25%

27%

66%

​65%

​62%

59%

88%

87%

70%

​59%

​65%

72%

51%

60%

79%

​94%

88%

84%

79%

81%

50%

​45%

​25%

33%

32%

44%



 


Factors Influencing DSST Exam Pass Rates


DSST Exam Pass rates for Fiscal Year 2019
Fiscal Year: 2019

Preparation


Adequate preparation is a crucial determinant of success in DSST exams.


Students who invest time reviewing study materials, taking practice tests, and engaging in focused study sessions tend to perform better, increasing their chances of earning college credits and minimizing student loan obligations.


Familiarity with the Subject Matter


Students with prior knowledge or professional experience in a subject area may find it easier to navigate DSST exams and secure passing scores, paving the way for reduced student debt.


Test-Taking Strategies


Effective test-taking strategies, including time management and critical thinking, significantly boost students' performance and improve their chances of success.



 


Trends and Insights


DSST Exam Pass rates for Fiscal Year 2018.
Fiscal Year: 2018

Technology and Business Subjects on the Rise


In recent years, a surge in the popularity of DSST exams has occurred, especially in technology and business-related subjects.


This trend aligns with the growing demand for skilled professionals in these fields, opening doors for students to enhance their employability while curbing student debt.


Growth in Online Learning


The advent of online education and distance learning has democratized access to DSST exams.


This expansion in accessibility has led to an increased number of test-takers, positively influencing pass rates and contributing to reduced student debt burdens.



 


Achieving Success in DSST Exams Through Preparation


DSST Practice Test Inside a laptop and tablet.

DSST TEST PREP


We've witnessed remarkable success stories among our military and civilian students, achieving scores in the 90th percentile.


This achievement underscores a critical truth: proper preparation significantly influences performance in DSST exams.


Regardless of military or civilian status, students who invest time and effort into comprehensive study plans consistently demonstrate superior results.


So, if you're considering DSST exams, take note – proper preparation is the key to unlocking your potential.


Again, a lot of factors affect whether or not you'll pass an exam, such as:


  • The quality of the study materials you use

  • The amount of time you spend studying

  • Whether or not you have real-world experience in the subject

  • The test's difficulty level

  • And more!


So, while passage rates can give you a good idea of how other students have fared on a test, they should not be the sole factor in your decision to take a DSST exam.



This will allow you to compete against yourself and create a study plan.


If you find yourself in a bit of a bind during your studies or need to know what study materials suit you, take a free practice test and see what subjects you're most comfortable with.


With some studying, you'll be able to pass your DSST test and get the scores you need for college credit.


And remember - always speak with your academic counselor before taking any DSST exam.


Happy Testing!


 


Student Resources


Students sitting at a graduation ceremony.

Resources


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