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Credit by Demonstrated Mastery

Credit by Demonstrated Mastery (CDM) is a State Board of Education policy (GCS-M-001.13) that was passed in October 2013.

CDM offers middle and high school students the opportunity to personalize and accelerate their learning by earning credit for a high school course through demonstrating mastery of course content, without being required to complete classroom instruction for a certain amount of seat time.

Students who wish to pursue CDM will need to show mastery of course content by completing two phases.  In phase I, students must complete an exam of course content. In phase II, students must create a product/performance that exhibits a deeper understanding and application of course content.

Course Eligibility & Prerequisites

Students may earn CDM for all high school courses in grades 9-12 and high school courses offered in middle school in grades 6-8.  The following courses are excluded from CDM:

  • Career and Technical Education (CTE) work-based learning courses (co-op, internship, apprenticeship)
  • CTE courses that have a clinical setting as a requirement of the course, such as Early Childhood Education I & II, and Nursing Fundamentals
  • CTE Advanced Studies courses or any course without state technical standards
  • English Language Learner (ELL) courses
  • Healthful Living required courses
  • AP/IB courses

For courses offered in a predetermined sequence, a student may only attempt to earn CDM for the next course in the sequence.  For example, if a student has taken Math I and would like to attempt CDM for Math III, s/he would need to first successfully earn credit for Math II, either through CDM or traditional enrollment in the course.

2019-2020 CDM Timeline


Fall 2019

Spring 2020

Summer 2020

CDM Application Due

August 27

January 27

July 29

Phase I Assessment

September 17-30 

February 17 - 21

July 20 - 24

Results of Phase I

By October 7

By February 28

By July 31

Phase II Assessment

October 7 - 25

March 2 - 20

July 27 – August 14

Results of Phase II

October 28

By March 23

By August 17

Appeal Process

ends November 7 

ends April 2

ends August 27

CDM Contacts

At Middle Schools:

AL Stanback: Wyn Payton

CW Stanford: Ron Roche

Gravelly Hill: Intisar Hamidullah

At High Schools:

Cedar Ridge: Heather Witherspoon

Orange High: Kandis Sauls

For District: Crystal Vaught, Director of Accountability & Testing