The PLA Boost: Results from a 72-Institution Targeted Study of Prior Learning Assessment and Adult Student Outcomes

The Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) with support from Lumina Foundation and Strada Education Network conducted research focused on policy and practice issues related to the recognition of prior learning. The research summarized in this report focuses on issues arising in the practice of the recognition of prior learning, policies that encourage or limit its adoption and key research needs and future directions for the field. The recommendations of the report are applicable to the postsecondary and workforce development fields and include:

  • Promoting equity
  • Scaling Prior Learning Assessments (PLA) usage through institutional policies, practices and partnerships
  • Building support for PLA at the institutional level
  • Improving system, state and federal policies
  • Supporting future directions and research needs for the field
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December 2020