In 2014, AcademyOne began working with the Pennsylvania Commission for Community Colleges to develop an automated Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) solution. The project’s objective was to expand the opportunities for nontraditional learners in the state to turn their life and work experience into college credit, saving time and money spent working toward a degree. The project was financed with a portion of the funds from a grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration.
In early 2014, AcademyOne began working with Pennsylvania’s 14 Community Colleges to develop a statewide PLA solution that would provide anyone the means to petition an institution for credit, while establishing a common framework for recognizing and awarding prior learning credit in a consistent manner across the state.
AcademyOne began work on the project by developing an online portal that would serve as a single point of entry for adult learners to access information on the prior learning assessment policies, practices and processes for all of the participating institutions.
Within the PLA portal, AcademyOne built an interactive, e-portfolio assessment system. Through this system, students can create an account, find an institution and look for a course or courses they think will best match their experience. They are first connected with an advisor at one of the colleges who will lead them through the application process. Once the advisor approves an application and the portfolio assessment fee is paid, the system guides them through building and submitting an e-portfolio to support and demonstrate their knowledge and expertise. A college assessor is then assigned to conduct an evaluation of their e-portfolio and make a recommendation on their eligibility for PLA credit.
In February 2015, the PA Commission for Community Colleges launched their statewide PLA solution College Credit FastTrack.
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AcademyOne is a consulting and software development firm working in the higher education sphere. We deliver industry-leading solutions to states and institutions who wish to improve student retention and degree completion rates, especially among the growing population of nontraditional learners.