NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED524578
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Apr
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Underserved Students Who Earn Credit through Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) Have Higher Degree Completion Rates and Shorter Time-to-Degree. Research Brief
Klein-Collins, Rebecca
Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (NJ1)
In 2010, the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL) released a report on a multi-institutional study on prior learning assessment (PLA) and adult student outcomes. The study examined data from 62,475 adult students at 48 colleges and universities, following the students' academic progress over the course of seven years. The data from the 48 postsecondary institutions in this study show that students with PLA credit had better academic outcomes, particularly in terms of graduation rates and persistence, than other adult students. Many PLA students also shortened the time required to earn a degree, depending on the number of PLA credits earned. This research brief showcases the findings by race/ethnicity and income--two demographic categories often used to define underserved student groups. The data show that black non-Hispanic, Hispanic, and low-income students with PLA credits have better academic outcomes than similar students without PLA credits. The positive findings for low-income, black non-Hispanic and Hispanic students suggest that awarding college credit for significant life learning could be an effective way to accelerate degree completion, while lowering the cost, for underserved student populations. (Contains 4 figures and 1 footnote.)
Council for Adult and Experiential Learning. 55 East Monroe Street Suite 1930, Chicago, IL 60603. Tel: 312-499-2600; Fax: 312-499-2601; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Council for Adult and Experiential Learning