One way to shorten the length of your program and reduce your tuition casts is by successfully taking CLEP tests. The College Board, which is the controlling authority for the tests, maintains test scores for a period of 10 years from the date of completion, so these tests can be taken before of after you gain admittance to a program. Check with your institution for their specific policy regarding CLEP tests.
I passed three CLEP tests which reduced my program requirements by 15 credit hours. This was equivalent to five classes in the program I pursued. The specific tests that I took were the Social Sciences and History, Natural Sciences, and American Literature tests. These tests are each worth six semester credit hours but I only needed three credits in science so my total was 15. The credits from the tests showed up as transfer credits on my transcript.