Give Yourself Some Credit
Many students return to the college campus with years of experience through their work, professional and military training, self-study, hobbies, and community activities, as well as various tests such as Dante’s, CLEP, proficiency exams, Advanced Placement and certificate programs resulting in learning that occurs outside the classroom. Such learning occurs on many levels. To receive credit for learning occurring outside the college classroom, the student must substantiate that the knowledge is college-level.
As an adult returning to college, you have many life and work experiences from which you have learned. Is the learning college-level? Can it be applied to your degree program? Assume, for example, you manage your own business. You have experience in human resources, planning, scheduling, marketing, and customer service. You can explain not only what you have done on the job for the past ten years, but the reasons for your actions and your knowledge and skills in these areas.
GETTING CREDIT FOR LIFE EXPERIENCE
A La Roche student can earn credits at the undergraduate level through the options listed below. Credit for Life Experience credit hours can be applied toward general and major electives and courses for lower and upper division requirements for your major. Learning must relate directly to a course offered by La Roche and appear in the La Roche College catalogue. The total number of credits awarded for life experience may not exceed 21 nor be applied toward the last 30 credits required for college residency. The fee is minimal. Experience which could merit credit may include: Artwork, computer software development, films, patents, business plans, military service records, writing samples, musical compositions, past job descriptions and web sites.
NON-TRADITIONAL LEARNING OPTIONS TO CONSIDER:
• Advanced Placement (AP). Departments approve qualifying scores through the Advanced Placement Program of the Educational Testing Service (ETS). Students must have their scores sent directly to the College Registrar to receive credit.
• Challenge Examinations. A qualified applicant may earn credit by proficiency Examination upon the recommendation of the dean of his/her college and the approval of the registrar. The exam must be taken prior to the last 30 hours at La Roche and a minimum grade of C scored.
This option provides an opportunity for the student to demonstrate that knowledge associated with a particular course has been gained through previous experiences or course work.
» Tests are instructor prepared for each specific subject being challenged.
College Level Examination Program (CLEP) This is the most widely accepted credit-by-examination program in the nation. With CLEP, students can earn college credit for what they already know, regardless of where the knowledge was acquired, by passing a 90-minute multiple-choice exam.
» The exams only can be challenged during the semester in which the course is being offered.
» The fee is minimal.
» CLEP is available for a vast range of courses.
» The tests are administered in several places in Allegheny, Washington and Beaver counties.
» The fee is minimal.
The total number of credits awarded for CLEP examinations may not exceed 60 nor be applied toward the last 30 credits required for college residency. For a complete list of acceptable CLEP credits at La Roche College, please call the Office of Graduate Studies & Adult Education at (412) 536-1262. For more information on the CLEP program, visit their web site at www.collegeboard.org.
• External Examinations. Satisfactory scores on the College Level Examination Program (CLEP), Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES), and other examinations evaluated by American Council on Education (ACE) for college-level credit. Students must have scores reported directly to the College Registrar.
• Credit for Training. Credit will be awarded for military training that has been evaluated and recommended for college credit by the American Council on Education (ACE). Students must submit documentation (AARTS or SMARTS transcript is recommended, at minimum a DD214 or DD295) of training to the College Registrar.
• Portfolio Development. A student may develop a portfolio to gain college credit. Portfolios are submitted to the Registrar’s Office and evaluated by La Roche faculty in the student’s intended major.