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What is Prior Learning Credit?

​​​​​​​Prior Learning credit can be awarded for college-level learning students have already acquired from work, training, and life experiences.

As an adult, much of your personal and professional development has probably occurred outside the traditional academic classroom. Through such experiences, you may have acquired skills and knowledge that could satisfy some of your CMU degree requirements.

CMU’s Prior Learning model is based on “competencies” rather than on course “​equivalents,” but the credit awarded may be applied to your degree program, usually elective credits. The competency model allows you to have your college-level learning recognized, regardless of whether CMU offers specific courses pertaining to what you have learned.

For any of your learning from work, training, and life experien​ces to be considered for credit, you will need to assemble a portfolio that explains and documents the experiences ​and what you learned from them (i.e., what “competencies” you have acquired). A key component of the portfolio is your “self-assessment” of learning, which explains the learning that occurred through the experiences. Your portfolio will then be evaluated to determine whether credit can be awarded for undergraduate or graduate-level competencies.

See the Prior Learning Stude​nt Ha​n​​dbook for more information about Prior Learning credit.

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