PLA portfolio for University Studies

For students who need elective credit

If you have space in your degree plan for elective credits and meet the other prerequisites for PLA, you are encouraged to pursue PLA for University Studies credit. In this process, the University recognizes the learning gained through work, travel, volunteer, and self-directed learning projects. Students pursuing PLA for elective credit do not have to match their learning exactly to a Lewis University course.

PLA Seminar and ongoing support

In order to pursue PLA for University Studies (elective credit), students must enroll in a 1-credit hour course in portfolio preparation, LU 205 “Prior Learning Assessment Seminar.” This course is offered each semester and meets one Saturday morning/month. The summer course is online. In the class, students learn how to identify relevant past learning experiences, construct a portfolio, write about their prior learning, and collect documentation about what they know.

After students complete the “Prior Learning Assessment Seminar,” they will receive ongoing support as they write their portfolio. Portfolios must be submitted within one year from the completion of the “Prior Learning Assessment Seminar.”

Process for awarding credit

Portfolios for University Studies crediat are evaluated by the PLA Assessment Committee. The Committee interviews applicants upon completion of the portfolio and awards elective credits for PLA portfolios.

University Studies credit will not apply to the requirements of the major, general education or Mission course requirements. University Studies credit may be used for general elective purposes only.

Getting started

Students interested in writing a PLA Portfolio for elective credit must attend a free, 1 hour PLA Orientation. Contact Dr. Cynthia Stevens at (815) 834-6938 for further information.