Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) Credits - Undergraduate Programs

Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) credits provide students the opportunity to validate their relevant learning in a written document called a portfolio. The portfolio information is organized to correspond as closely as possible to comparable courses from Misericordia's inventory of undergraduate offerings. Emphasis is placed on the satisfactory presentation of the student's knowledge relative to each course's learning objectives.

For challenged courses, a faculty assessor from the involved department will be selected by that college's dean. The assessor will review the portfolio according to the following criteria: the learning will be demonstrated to be college level; the learning is current, particularly in quickly-changing fields such as computer science and business; the learning must be able to be generalized and transferred, i.e., it can be applied outside of the specific context or situation in which it was acquired; the learning must be measurable; the learning must have a theoretical as well as a practical component; credits will be awarded for competence and actual learning outcomes, not merely the experience; the credits awarded will not duplicate other earned credits. (This includes transfer, CLEP, and/or completed course credits, ACT, PEP exams, etc.)

Students who request assessment of their prior learning must:

  1. Be matriculated at the university with a declared major;
  2. Limit requests for assessment to those course areas that will fulfill degree requirements in their declared major;
  3. Have had all transfer credits officially evaluated prior to attempting this credit option.
  4. Submit the designated fee for each PLA assessment being evaluated made payable to the department assessing the PLA portfolios(s).

Students will not be required to have any previously earned university credits; thus there will be no minimum GPA requirements. Students who have been awarded prior learning assessment credits at another institution will not automatically be awarded such credit in transfer. Students have the opportunity to present their portfolios, with updated information, to the PLA committee. The option for prior learning assessment will be available only during fall and spring semesters. For more information contact the Center for Adult and Continuing Education at (570) 674-6450.