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Credit by Demonstrated Mastery CDM

Credit by Demonstrated Mastery (CDM)

Pursuant to State Board Policy GCS-M-OO1, Credit By Demonstrated Mastery is the process by which each school district must award students credit for a course without requiring the student to complete the classroom instruction or enroll in the course. The intention of this policy is to enable students to access more advanced content to meet their academic needs. This is an option which allows students to demonstrate deep mastery of a course’s content, getting credit and a pass/fail grade for the course by taking an assessment and completing an artifact. Transitioning away from seat time, in favor of a structure that creates flexibility, allows students to progress as they demonstrate mastery of academic content.  Failed attempts at CDM are not reflected on a student’s transcript.  


Beginning in the Spring of 2015: Access to the CDM process is open to all North Carolina Public School students in grades rising 9th-12th. CDM is offered for all high school courses (and those high school courses offered in middle school) with the exception of the following:

  • CTE work-based learning courses (co-op, internship, apprenticeship)

  • CTE courses that have a clinical setting as a requirement of the course, such as ProStart, Early Childhood Education I/II, and Nursing Fundamentals

  • CTE Advanced Studies courses

  • English Language Learner (ELL) courses

  • Healthful Living required courses

  • AP courses

CDM is only available for standard-level courses. CDM credits will be indicated on the transcript similar to a ‘pass’ and therefore do not impact a student’s grade point average.**

What is the process for acquiring high school credit through CDM?
  • Student will apply for Credit by Demonstrated Mastery.
  • Student and parent(s) will have meeting with school counselor to discuss long term considerations of CDM. 
  • Student will take the assessment for the course (Phase I).
  • Student will be notified of Phase II requirements (artifacts and/or performance assessments) if he/she has met the Superior level on the Phase I assessment.