Saturday, January 12, 2013

RSC Students Save Time and Money With Credit for Prior Learning

Written by Rio Salado College PR interns Erica White and Matt Loper

Jeff Glover serves as a public information officer
 for the Tempe Police Department
Education is more than just classroom work, and Rio Salado College can help students earn college credits for the knowledge received outside of the traditional academic environment.

“Credit for Prior Learning is credit for college level knowledge obtained through non-traditional schooling, work or life experiences,” said Linda Lukey, Rio Salado College director of testing and prior learning assessment. “It is based on learning that takes place outside of the classroom.”

The most common subjects students receive credit for are; English, language, literature, math, and communication, but credits can also be earned in many different areas.

Those earning credit for prior learning see added benefits. “It saves time, money, and increases the potential for upward mobility in their career,” said Lukey. “It also helps students find value in the experiential learning that has taken place.”

Jeff Glover, a public information officer for the Tempe Police Department recognizes the benefits of receiving credit for prior learning for himself and others in law enforcement.

“I’m looking at getting a different degree,” Glover said. “I think it’s a great program.”

Officers in the department take specialized courses that cover various subjects, some of which Glover believes could be applied toward college credit.

“You’re still doing the classroom work, you’re just doing it for your job,” he said.

According to Lukey, it is important for students to work with an advisor to determine what credits are needed for their degree program, define their educational goals and check on the transferability of any credits earned through Prior Learning Assessment.

“Know what type of prior learning assessment is for you; credit by exam, evaluation or portfolio,” said Lukey. “For credit by evaluation, make sure that you include all necessary materials, documents and certifications.”
For many, the opportunity to receive credit for knowledge attained through work and life experiences provides them with the hope of furthering their education.

“Education is one of those things that is always ongoing,” Glover said.

Credit for Prior Learning is one more way Rio Salado College hopes to help people take what they know and advance their education toward their life goals.

This article also available in the Jan. 12 News By You section of the Tempe Republic.