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PLA: Its Time Has Come Again NEASC Regional Conference December 2014.

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Presentation on theme: "PLA: Its Time Has Come Again NEASC Regional Conference December 2014."— Presentation transcript:

1 PLA: Its Time Has Come Again NEASC Regional Conference December 2014

2 PLA Deborah Wright, Director of the Center for the Adult Learner, Lesley University, Mass. Gabrielle Dietzel, Director, Vermont State Colleges, Office of External Programs, located at the Community College of Vermont Shirley Adams, Ph.D. Provost, Charter Oak State College, CT

3 What is PLA? Prior Learning Assessment is the process of earning college credit for college-level learning acquired from other sources, such as work experience, professional training, military training, or open source learning from the web. Multiple Approaches include: Portfolio Assessment, ACE Guides, AP, CLEP, and DSST exams; Excelsior College Exams, evaluation of local training, and challenge exams. Ten Standards for Assessing Learning establish best practices for PLA evaluation processes. (Assessing Learning – Standards, Principles, & Procedures; M. Fiddler, C. Marienau, U. Whitaker:CAEL) CAEL.ORG

4 Why is PLA a Good Idea? Data from the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL) 2010 study of 62,000 adult students with and without PLA: Completion Rates: Twice the rate for Associate Degrees (13% vs. 6% ), almost thrice for Bachelor Degrees (43% vs. 15% ) Persistence: 56% of PLA students earned a degree within 7 years (21 % non-PLA)

5 APL at the Vermont State Colleges Central PLA office: four assessment options Two Portfolio Courses 1. Comprehensive Portfolio, unlimited 2. Focused Portfolio, limited to 16 credits CLEP/DSST Testing Course Challenges

6 PLA at the Vermont State Colleges More than 7,000 portfolio students Students are awarded TRANSFER CREDIT Credit goes with the student Comprehensive portfolios: four faculty, committee Limited portfolio: two faculty, individual reviews Course Challenge: one course, one faculty evaluator Average credit for portfolios: 30 / 12 ( ~ 70%) Advising is very important.

7 Lesley University Private, non-profit university 2 undergraduate colleges; 2 graduate colleges Center is located within the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Average student age in LCAL is credits to graduate

8 PLA at Lesley University Students can transfer in 90/120 credits 63% of students transfer in more than 50 credits PLA credits applied as transfer credits as students enter the program 45 credits max via PLA 3 credit PLA Course – helps students develop portfolio

9 Lesley University Credits can be used for gen ed, elective, or core Each portfolio is read by two faculty for assessment of credit Number of credits applied for from 11/SP-14/SU 1327; number of portfolios 86 90% of credits applied for are awarded Average portfolio size is 15 credits

10 Charter Oak State College State online, non-traditional college Serves adult students Average age 39 Average number of credits upon matriculation—75 12% of graduates use some form of PLA Graduation rate higher than non-PLA

11 PLA at Charter Oak State College Portfolio assessment Credit for non-credit programs Credential evaluation Military credit Testing Ease of transfer Conduct PLA for other colleges

12 Sample Transcript

13 PLA Pilot—BMI Project Expand PLA Consortium PLA video and audit tool Conducted focus groups Offered scholarships Feedback on Pilot – All 14 completed successfully – Helped them complete more quickly – Liked the scholarship option

14 PLA/Competency Based Education Is it the same? PLA is for prior learning CBE is for demonstrating current learning

15 What is happening regionally and nationally Federal Financial Aid—ex-sites in PLA Registered Apprenticeship-College Consortium program (RACC) TAACCT grants Military credit Regional consortium

16 Questions or Comments NEASC Regional Conference December 2014


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