Prior Learning Assessment (PLA)
At National Louis University, your personal and professional experience and knowledge can be worth college credit. Colleges and universities often refer to this knowledge as prior learning. NLU's Prior Learning Assessment office offers several programs for students to demonstrate prior college-level learning including; Credit by Portfolio (options 1, 2 and 3), Credit by Examination, Credit by Licenses and Certifications.
Credit by Portfolio - Option 1
ACL301 - the Perspectives on Prior Learning course is a means for students to recognize, document, and validate learning from life and work experiences for potential college credit. Throughout this course students are offered group and individual assitance in the development of a portfolio documenting their prior learning experiences and learning outcomes. This course is offered on a qurterly basis, online and at various site locations. Undergraduate students enrolled in the BSM, BSMIS, ABS, HCL, Human Services, Criminal Jutice and Communication programs are eligible to take this class.
Student learning outcomes are assessed and credit granted by content-area experts/faculty. Guidelines for evaluation of prior learning outcomes are based on recommendations by the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL) and the American Council on Education (ACE). In addition to class tuition, a fee of $400 is charged to cover the cost of the second essay evaluation only. A number of pre-approved professional licenses and certifications can also be evaluated in class for possible additional elective hours.
Credit by Portfolio - Options 2 and 3
Beginning fall term 2015, students in the following undergraduate programs may opt to be a part of a pilot program and take portfolio options 2 or 3. Students who may participate include; BA Communications, BSM and BA Criminal Justice.
Options 2: PLA Facilitator
The facilitator provides students with a one-on-one experience where they will be coached and guided in assembling their portfolio of evidentiary artifacts for award of credit.
Option 3: Self-Submission The self-submission option is for NLU students who wish to create their own protfolio without guided asstance, other than the services available to all NLU sutdents (i.e., the online writing center, library support staff, etc.). If the student's self-submission fails to achieve the minimum performance level to be awarded credit, the student may elect to resubmit only after completing Option 1 or Option 2.
Fees for Options 2 and 3: 100/200 level submissions - $450 and 300/400 level submissions - $600
Credit by Examination
NLU awards credit to students who achieve acceptable scores on standardized tests such as College Board's College Level Examination Program (CLEP) and the DANTES Subject Standardized Tests (DSSTs). Tests measure learning in a variety of academic disciplines. The CLEP and DANTES testing hotline is 800.443.5522 x4316. Test schedules and registration information can be found on the upper right side of this website.
Credit by Licenses and Certifications
A list of faculty approved, nationally recognized licenses and certifications is available upon request. For more information, please contact 800.443.5522 x4320.