Your prior learning experiences can come in many forms and may be more beneficial to your education than you already know. Depending on your types of experiences, you may have them evaluated and potentially receive academic credit for them. Prior learning can include:
Types of Assessment
Walden offers a variety of ways to assess whether your prior learning experience is eligible for academic credit, including:
- Credit by Portfolio: You can apply for credit recognized by NCCRS after developing a portfolio through the Council for Adult & Experiential Learning (CAEL) via LearningCounts.org. For this option, you will first consult with a member of the Academic Advising Team as a Walden student. If appropriate, you will then speak with a Council for Adult & Experiential Learning (CAEL) advisor and complete a Letter of Permission. Next steps include:
- Enrolling in the LearningCounts.org CAEL 100 course. This six-week course prepares you to create your portfolio for evaluation in order to earn college credit. This LearningCounts course only needs to be taken once regardless of the number of portfolios created. By completing this course, you can earn three credits that can be transferred to Walden as elective credit. Course fee is $500.
- Creating your portfolio and requesting an evaluation. Portfolios are evaluated by trained CAEL evaluators. CAEL will evaluate portfolios for credit and award credit on a National College Credit Recommendation Service (NCCRS) transcript. Each portfolio costs $250.
- Requesting that an official CAEL transcript be submitted to Walden.
- Professional Certifications: If you are a member of certain professional organizations, you may be able to translate your certifications into academic credit for a number of our online degree programs. Learn more.
- Credit by Examination: Prior learning credit can be awarded by examination through:
- Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES)
- College-Level Examination Program (CLEP)
- Excelsior College Examinations (ECE)
- Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma
- MOOCs: If you’ve completed a MOOC—a massive open online course—through an ACE-approved training program, you may be able to turn that course into credit if you completed it through an ACE-approved program.*
You will need to contact the appropriate accrediting organization to arrange your assessment. Please contact an enrollment advisor to learn more. Request information, call 1-866-492-5336 in the United States, or see a list of international toll-free phone numbers.
*Other ACE-approved training programs may also be used toward academic credit. Speak with an enrollment advisor.
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