State Policy Approaches to Support Prior Learning Assessments

To meet the future needs of the U.S. economy, more and more students will need to enroll in — and complete — postsecondary learning programs. Prior learning assessment, or PLA, can help more workers complete training and degree programs sooner by giving them credit for knowledge and competencies they've gained outside of the classroom. PLA can save students time and money, and the boost in credit earning might also have a motivating effect for some students.

This guide, from the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL), can be used to help state leaders develop state policies in support of Prior Learning Assessment (PLA). The guide includes areas of consideration for state leaders, current strategies used by states to promote PLA, case studies and a sample state policy.

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January 2015