Education Leaders Stress Need to Give Credit for Life Experience - Students - The Chronicle of Higher Education

This is timely in light that I've been named to a Tennessee Higher Education Commission PLA Task Force. As always, when something like this appears in The Chronicle of Higher Education, the comments are spicier--albeit predictable as well--than the article.  Lacey Johnson is the author.

Education Leaders Stress Need to Give Credit for Life Experience
The time has come to make it easier for students to earn credit for practical skills obtained outside the classroom, said education leaders during a conference on Wednesday at the Center for American Progress. "Prior-learning assessment," which recognizes experiential learning, like on-the-job training, military experience, or volunteering, should be taken seriously, the speakers said, especially now when increasing college graduation rates is a priority for lawmakers and educators.

"There's no need to relearn something you already know," said Gerri Fiala, deputy assistant secretary for employment and training at the U.S. Department of Labor.

Fifty-six percent of adult students who completed some form of a prior-learning assessment earned a bachelor's or associate degree within seven years, compared with 21 percent of students who did not complete such an assessment, according to a study completed last year by the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning. Taking fewer classes allows students to graduate faster and at less expense.

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