Assessing Prior Learning for Credit

Policies and Practices for Awarding Professional Program Credit

Topics: Prior Learning Assessment, Academic Affairs, Academic Planning, Assessment

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After the implementation of new state regulations, administrators approached us for strategies on developing and implementing policies for prior learning assessment. This report reviews options for evaluating past professional experience and processes for approving and implementing credit-granting policies. In particular, contacts describe how they select assessment options that ensure academic excellence, promote compliance with accreditation standards, and develop academic programs designed for prior learning assessment.

Research Questions

  • What institutional policies govern the translation of professional experience to academic credit?
  • How do institutions develop these policies?
  • How do these policies align with accreditor requirements and expectations?
  • How do institutions document academic credit awarded for professional experience on student transcripts?
  • How do institutions mange the inherent inequality in prior experiences when deciding to award credit for prior professional experience?