Prior Learning Assessment

Your success is our top priority at the University of Arizona Global Campus (UAGC). If you have work experience, previous corporate training, continuing education units, prior school credits, or other non-traditional sources of previous learning, they may be assessed for potential college credit. If the credits are not accepted through the official evaluation through the Registrar’s Office, you may request to have them reviewed through Prior Learning Assessment (PLA). Students may earn credit through the PLA program in two ways: Sponsored Professional Training and the Experiential Essay.

Check out the PLA Documentation Guide and the PLA Student Handbook to learn how the PLA program works.

Sponsored Professional Training

If you earned a certificate, completed a course, or have a documented completed training, PLA may be assessed by providing documentation of training content, hours, and a summarization of learning outcomes and application to a UAGC course. You will need to document what you've learned in a short Credit Rationale Paper. Examples include:

  • Standardized corporate trainings
  • Certificate programs
  • Seminars


Experiential Essay

Adult learners come to UAGC with a wealth of professional knowledge, and you deserve credit for your expertise. Experiential Learning Credits (ELC), earned by writing an Experiential Essay, offer you a convenient way to turn your experience into credits that may be applied to your degree.

Here's how to get started:

  1. Review the PLA Information Center in the Learning Resources section of your student portal.
  2. Send an email to [email protected] with your completed Learning Inventory Form and let the team know you are interested in the Experiential Learning Credit (ELC) Workshop. The workshop is a self-paced series of 5 modules that take you through the process of writing an Experiential Essay aligning your learning with the outcomes of a course in your degree program.
  3. At the end of Module 5, you submit your completed essay to be evaluated by a faculty subject-matter-expert.
  4. If your essay is approved, you will be awarded credit for the course.

Upon completion of the Experiential Learning Credit Workshop, additional essays may be submitted. See the UAGC Catalog for more information.

Get Credit for Your Work and Life Experience

The University of Arizona Global Campus knows that our students often come to us with many years of experience in their field or other valuable life experience. That’s why we offer the opportunity to have that experience evaluated through Prior Learning Assessment (PLA).

Explore Common PLA Opportunities

Opportunities for Active Students

Some UAGC community-based opportunities offer a chance for active students to earn PLA elective credit. For more information see the opportunities below:

  • Undergraduate students who are approved to be CHAMPS Mentors may also earn credits through the PLA program by meeting the prescribed requirements of the CHAMPS program.
  • Honors Program students have an opportunity to earn elective credit through the PLA program.

The transferability of credits is subject to the University of Arizona Global Campus transfer credit policies and requires the submission of official transcripts. The official transcripts will be evaluated by the Registrar’s Office to determine the credits that will officially apply toward a UAGC degree program. Credits must be earned at the same degree level in order to be applied. Additional restrictions may apply. See the UAGC Academic Catalog for full undergraduate and graduate transfer policies.

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