The Credit for Prior Learning (CPL) program allows B.A. students to earn credits by demonstrating that their knowledge gained outside the classroom matches the learning objectives of one or more of their courses. CPL offers B.A. students three paths to earn credits, which can save them both time and money.

Many SLU students engage in a variety of work and other activities such as labor and community activism, public service, volunteerism, and other examples of social commitment, where they gain skills that mirror what they might learn in SLU courses. The CPL program guides students through the process of documenting and demonstrating their outside learning to seek the award of college credit.

Dr. Steve Greenfeld, Head of CPL

Prior Learning Assessment by Standardized Examination

SLU students generally complete standardized examinations to seek credit for Pathways courses and/or electives in the B.A. program.
Minimum passing scores have already been established, and SLU will grant credits only for scores recognized as equivalent to college-level work. Faculty may also require that students passing the exams further demonstrate a specific learning outcome level.
Students should consult their advisor before paying to schedule an exam to ensure the exam fulfills a degree requirement and that they do not already have credit for the course or content area that it covers.

Learn more about earning credit through standardized examinations

Prior Learning Assessment by Portfolio

The most flexible CPL option, portfolio submission does not depend on testing, and students can petition for credit regardless of the source of their prior learning. The portfolio is an organized collection of evidence that demonstrates proficiency in the learning outcomes of a required course in the B.A. program. Student portfolios are submitted to faculty evaluators, who determine whether to award credit for the equivalent B.A. course. To be eligible to submit portfolios, students are required to take a 3-credit Portfolio Development for Prior Learning course, which counts towards their degree and is graded pass/fail.

Learn more about earning credit with the portfolio method

Prior Learning Assessment by Non-Collegiate Learning

Credit for non-collegiate learning can be granted for college-level learning acquired in coursework or training outside of a college or university. The American Council on Education (ACE) and the National College Credit Recommendation Service (NCCR) evaluate college-level training programs, industry credentials, and licenses from the military, government, and the public sector that may be eligible for college credit at SLU.

Learn more about earning credit through demonstrating non-collegiate learning