Credit For Prior Learning

You may be closer to earning a degree than you think! Genesee Community College recognizes that "prior learning” may be equivalent to college-level credit. Prior Learning is non-college or experience-based learning that has been attained outside the sponsorship of accredited postsecondary education institutions. Credit for Prior Learning includes knowledge acquired from work and life experiences; community and volunteer extension courses; individual study and reading; civic, community and volunteer work; and participation in informal courses and in-service training sponsored by associations, business, government, and industry.

Not sure if Credit for Prior Learning is right for you? Take our quick survey to discover which Credit for Prior Learning options you may be eligible for!

Credit for Prior Learning is awarded within the following standards:

  1. Proficiency credit is recorded on the student transcript using the grading mode of "CR". Please check with your desired transfer institution, if applicable, to determine if your Prior Learning credit is accepted to their institution.
  2. Credit is limited by the College Residency Requirement. To be awarded a degree at least half of the student's credits must be earned through Genesee Community College courses.
  3. Credit will not be awarded to students who have earned credit in equivalent course work.
  4. Credit earned will only be awarded to registered Genesee Community College students or accepted students who intend to register in the proceeding semester.

Credit for Prior Learning at GCC can be earned in three different ways: Standardized Examinations, Non-College Sponsored Learning, and Prior Learning Assessment (PLA).

Standardized Examinations

In developing an academic plan your advisor may discuss the possibility of receiving course credit by taking standardized exams that test prior learning knowledge. Depending on your score, the exam results may be used to meet some of GCC’s course requirements within a degree program. GCC accepts exam scores from the following examination programs:

Non-College Sponsored Learning

Students may have acquired college-level learning from non-college professional development programs, training experiences offered by an employer, professional associations, community-based organizations or military experience. GCC recognizes learning completed with the following organizations:

Prior Learning Assessment (PLA)

This assessment process examines knowledge you may have gained outside the classroom through work and life experiences, training programs, or other non-traditional learning methods and evaluates it for college credit. Here are a few questions that will help you to decide if you should consider this option:

  • Is your learning exactly or closely equivalent to a specific course listed in the College’s catalog?
  • Is your learning in subject areas that coincide with courses necessary to meet your degree requirements here at the GCC?
  • Do you understand the principles behind what you do, or have done, as well as the steps involved in doing it?
  • Is your knowledge current?

If you decide to pursue this route you will be expected to demonstrate proficiencies equal to or exceeding the knowledge gained in the course learning objectives. A faculty member will be assigned to you assist in documenting your prior learning and creating a portfolio. Your portfolio will then be assessed to determine credit recommendations.

Evaluation Fee: $25 per credit
Transcription Fee: $25 per course

For further information regarding PLA please contact the Transfer Services Office.