Credit for Prior Learning

Students may have the opportunity to gain credit for college-level learning obtained outside the college setting. Learning is considered college-level if it is generally applicable, includes both a theoretical and a practical understanding of the material and if it meets the following criteria:

  1. The student can demonstrate that what was learned is equivalent to the achievement levels expected of college work.
  2. The maximum number of credits to be gained through alternate means is limited to 10 percent of the completed study program degree requirements.
  3. Credits by alternate means, other than portfolio credit, are not considered among the credits to be taken in residence.
  4. All requirements for credit granted by alternate means must be completed prior to the beginning of the final semester before graduation.
  5. After completion of a challenge exam, acceptable grades of “P” (pass), “S” (satisfactory) or a letter grade of C or above will be recorded on the transcript as transfer credit. Credit by portfolio will be recorded as College of Saint Mary credit.

Methods by which college-level learning can be demonstrated include challenge examinations, CLEP examinations, DSST examinations, and credit by portfolio assessment. Individuals must be enrolled as students at College of Saint Mary to take advantage of these options. Some graduate programs do not accept credit for prior learning. Check with the Program Director.