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  • PLA Center
  • Baker University
  • 8001 College Blvd., Suite 100
  • Overland Park, KS 66210
  • 913.491.4432
  • priorlearn@bakerU.edu

Prior Learning Assessment Portfolio

Baker University's undergraduate business students may create a portfolio of life learning experiences to submit for credit evaluation.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a prior learning portfolio?

A prior learning portfolio is a formal written communication presented by you to our University, requesting credit for extra-collegiate learning.

Who may submit a prior learning portfolio?

Any enrolled Baker University undergraduate business student may submit a prior learning portfolio prior to completing his or her respective degree program requirements. You may submit the College Level Learning Essays section of the portfolio after you have completed our Prior Learning and Writing Development course (BBA/BSM/BBIS/BBL 310).

What is the Prior Learning and Writing Development (BBA/BSM/BBIS/BBL 310) course and how does it relate to the portfolio?

This course fulfills the upper-division-level (junior/senior) writing requirement for BBA/BSM/BBIS/BBL students. A portion of the course requirement is to write a College Level Learning Essay that relates to a particular life experience. This essay may be submitted in your portfolio to the PLA Center for evaluation. Three semester hours of credit are awarded upon successful completion of the course. Additional credits may be awarded for your portfolio submission. You may submit college level learning essays for evaluation after completing BBA/BSM/BBIS/BBL 310.

What is documented learning?

Documented learning is a portfolio category that consists of business and professional courses, seminars and other institutionally sponsored course work. We use documented learning to validate professional competency for learning gained outside the traditional college classroom. The four subcategories of documented learning are as follows:

  • Professional courses
  • Nationally or professionally accredited colleges and schools
  • Licenses
  • Standardized credits

As an undergraduate student, you may submit documented learning at any time before you complete your degree program. We recommend that you contact the PLA Center staff before starting work on your documented learning to find out if your courses will be eligible for credit through the portfolio.

What are professional courses?

We use this category of documented learning to document professional and business courses, seminars and training for potential college credit.

What are nationally or professional accredited schools?

This category is used to define courses taken at professionally or nationally accredited colleges and schools that are not regionally accredited. You may only submit courses not accepted in direct transfer because of the accreditation status of the institution where the credits were earned.

What are licenses?

This category is used to document licenses earned through an examination for potential college credit. For example, you may submit Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), securities, emergency medical technician (EMT), insurance and real estate licenses in this section of your portfolio.

If you completed course work for a license but did not actually receive the license, you may petition for credit under the professional courses category.

What are standardized credits?

This category includes corporate training courses that are evaluated by either the American Council on Education (ACE) or the Program for Non-Collegiate Sponsored Instruction (PONSI). Official transcripts are required to document this type of training. Historically, we have seen standardized credits from many companies.

What is a college level learning essay?

During the Prior Learning and Writing Development course, you will write a college level learning essay. In addition to satisfying the courses requirements, the essay may be submitted as part of your portfolio to be evaluated for additional credit. You will apply Kolb's Model of Experiential Learning to your learning experience by using a college course description for the framework of your essay. Your instructor will guide you through the process of writing the essay.

How much does a prior learning portfolio cost?

Submission of a portfolio for credit is an economical way to accelerate your degree progress. Our fees include the following:

  • Submission fee: $100. A 20% discount will be applied if your portfolio is submitted within 30 days of completing the Prior Learning and Writing Development course or if you have a one-on-one meeting with the PLA Center staff. This is a one-time fee; there is no additional charge for additional portfolio submissions.
  • Cost of  credits awarded:
    • Professional courses: $60 per credit hour earned
    • Nationally or professionally accredited schools: $60 per credit our earned
    • Licenses: $60 per credit hour earned
    • Standardized credit: $30 per credit hour earned
    • College level learning essay: $80 per credit hour earned
  • You will be billed for credits awarded after we complete your portfolio evaluation. Credits are posted to your transcript once we receive payment.

All credits earned through the portfolio process will be posted to the student’s transcript when the PLA office has received the evaluation. All fees associated with these credits will be due within 30 days. If portfolio verification and documentation fees are not paid within 30 days, the student’s account will be placed on financial hold, which will prevent access to grades and transcript information. Once the fees have been posted, the student’s account will be adjusted accordingly. 

Who will evaluate my portfolio?

A faculty member who has credentials (education and experience) in the discipline of your portfolio submission will assess the submission of your portfolio for college credit. For example, if you submit an essay about marriage and family, a faculty member who has an advanced degree and teaches in that discipline will evaluate your essay.

How long does it take to complete a portfolio evaluation?

The time it takes to evaluate your portfolio varies according to how much material is in your portfolio, whether or not a particular evaluator is available at a particular time and whether or not your portfolio needs to be sent to several evaluators. We make every effort to complete your evaluation as quickly as possible. On average, evaluation can take four to six weeks to complete.

What are the deadlines for portfolio submission?

If you need portfolio credits to complete your degree requirements, you can submit your portfolio any time before the commencement deadline, allowing enough time for evaluation, payment for credits earned and posting to your transcript.

How do I submit a PLA Portfolio?

The portfolio is now online using Moodle, allowing you to upload and submit your documentation electronically. To request access to the Online PLA Portfolio, please contact the PLA Center at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . All forms and necessary materials are located at the Online PLA Portfolio site.

 

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