Credit for Prior Learning
South Louisiana Community College (SLCC) recognizes that learning the acquisition of skills and competencies- occurs in many settings and contexts and is not limited to formal educational processes provided by colleges and universities. Accordingly, SLCC proactively offers students the opportunity to earn credit for college-level learning acquired through a variety of resources.
SLCC acknowledges that CPL methods validate college-level knowledge, skills and competencies acquired through many avenues such as, life experience,work experience,military experience, civic engagement, individual study and participation in classes or training sponsored by business and industry, professional organizations or government agencies through the use of evidence of experience already acquired that meets the course objectives.
Students will receive credit for demonstrated mastery of learning objectives that are equivalent to the learning objectives of courses offered for credit.
All degree-seeking students enrolled in a degree, diploma, or certificate program within SLCC who meet the requirements established in this policy shall be eligible and awarded college-credit equivalents.
Students must be enrolled (fully admitted) at SLCC when applying for any of the prior learning assessments leading to the award of non-traditional credits.
Credits may be requested only for courses that are offered by SLCC.
Students, irrespective of the CPL method chosen, must satisfactorily demonstrate a minimum of 75% of the required college-level knowledge to be awarded non-traditional credit.
Students may only apply once per course for the recognition of prior learning credit. If denied an appeal must be filed following the appeal process detailed in the catalog.
Credit for prior learning (non-traditional) credit cannot be awarded in a course that a student has previously completed or enrolled in at any college or university for which the student earned a grade of ” C” or higher.
Credit hours earned through these options are assigned a grade of “S.”
No quality points are earned, and the grade is not used to compute the grade point average.
No more than one-third credits in required major courses and no more than 50 % of credit hours total from non-traditional sources (CPL/PLA) may be used to meet degree requirements, except for specific programs governed by outside accrediting agencies.
No fee shall be charged for reviewing credit for prior learning, which is included on the matrix and entering them on the student’s transcript. Students may be assessed a fee for the administration of examinations and review of the portfolio.
If credit for prior learning is awarded, it will be added to the student’s transcript. If a student remits enrollment after CPL has been granted, for the applicable semester, then the credits will be removed from the student’s transcript. Students in this situation may reapply to the college and begin the process again at a later date.
Students who plan to use these non-traditional credits to meet degree requirements of other institutions should contact those institutions for their policies regarding acceptance; the receiving institution often reevaluates this type of credit.
SLCC is committed to offering qualified students appropriate opportunities to demonstrate mastery of college course content, skills and competencies through the following Credit for Prior Learning/Prior Learning Assessment evaluations:
- Advanced Placement via ACT and SAT
- College Board Advanced Placement (AP)Credit,
- College Level Examination Program (CLEP) Subject Examination,
- Credit by a Departmental Proficiency Challenge Examination,
- Credit by the Life Experience Assessment Program (LEAP),
- Industry-Based & Professional Certification Recognition,
- Credit for Military Education or Police Academy courses,
- Correspondence Credits,
- Credit for Non-Credit Courses, and
- Nontraditional credits from other Institutions
Advanced Placement via ACT
Advanced Placement refers to a college testing result that, once established criteria are met, allows first-semester freshmen and transfer students who have not attempted the next course in sequence at the former institution to receive college credits in certain English and Mathematics courses without actually completing those courses.
The potential award of this credit is contingent upon the submission of American College Testing (ACT) scores that (a) meet the College’s criteria and (b) are no more than five years old. The student’s highest relevant ACT scores will be considered.
First-time freshman students are automatically considered for Advanced Placement credit if they enroll in the advanced course before the completion of thirty academic credits at SLCC. Transfer students who have not attempted the next course in sequence at the former institution must request Advanced Placement credit before the completion of thirty academic credits at SLCC.
Dual enrollment high school students who achieve the required ACT scores, prior to admission to SLCC, may request a pre-requisite waiver and be placed in the higher level course. The ACT score must be verified to receive this advanced placement. Upon admission to SLCC, within the first semester, students who successfully complete the higher-level course must make the appropriate application. This process will verify the required result at the higher level has been achieved and the lower level course will then be entered into the transcript with a grade of “S”. If unsuccessful, the student will be required to enroll and take the lower level course at the earliest opportunity. Dual enrollment students who elect advanced placement, but are not intending to continue studies at SLCC, should first check with their intended future College or University concerning this decision. Students are advised that policy and procedures concerning advanced placement and the acceptance of the advanced placement credit and completion of the lower level course are at the discretion of the receiving college.
The SLCC general policy concerning credit from non-traditional sources is applicable to this credit opportunity. The following are specific requirements:
- A student with an ACT Math score of 25 or higher will be allowed to enroll in a higher Math course, and credit will be awarded for three hours of MATH 1105 College Algebra .
- A student with an ACT Math score of 28 or higher will be allowed to enroll in the Calculus I course, and credit will be awarded for three hours of MATH 1105 College Algebra and three hours of MATH 1110 Trigonometry.
A grade of “S” will be posted to the student’s transcript for credit given for any of these courses. SLCC students seeking advanced placement credit for any course should make this request in writing to the Registrar’s Office using the Credit for Prior Learning form located on the SLCC website. There is no ability to appeal the outcome of this process.
College Board Advanced Placement Credit
South Louisiana Community College may grant non-traditional credit for College Board Advanced Placement Examinations, which are taken prior to the student’s high school graduation and before admission to SLCC.
The first-semester SLCC student who has taken a College Board AP Credit exam must have scored at least 3 to receive appropriate course credit for the equivalent SLCC course. The determination of AP credit application to SLCC courses is subject to periodic review by the Division Deans in conjunction with the appropriate Department chairpersons. This process produces a published crosswalk of AP courses and SLCC course equivalencies when a minimum score of 3 is achieved. The crosswalk is reviewed periodically and comparisons will only be made on the currently approved crosswalk at the time the student applies. A student may not receive credit toward a degree solely on the basis of an Advanced Placement test score. The College reserves the ability to request, receive and assess supplementary assessment materials to establish course equivalencies. For all applications for Advanced Placement, the student must request that an original transcript from the College Board be sent to the Office of the Registrar for college evaluation and filing with the student’s records. College Board AP Credit scores are valid for three years from the original test date. There is no ability to appeal the outcome of this process.
When AP credit is considered for program or course placement purposes, this final placement decision is made by the appropriate Department Chairperson or Divisional Dean. Important:
- Students must request consideration of AP scores for equivalent credit of SLCC courses in the first semester of enrollment at the College.
- The student must request that an original transcript from the College Board be sent to the Office of the Registrar for evaluation.
- Student must score a minimum of “3” in the AP course to be considered for evaluation of equivalent College credits and where required, submit in a timely manner, supplementary assessment materials as directed by the relevant Department/Division offering the course equivalency sought.
- AP credit scores are valid for only three years from the original test date.
- A student who intends to use AP credit to receive SLCC course credit, and to then transfer to another College or University, should check the requirements of the receiving institution in relation to conditions to meet their degree requirements.
Credit by College Level Examination Program (CLEP) Subject Examinations
The awarding of credit under Educational Testing Services College Level Examination Program (CLEP) is based on scores earned on subject examinations using the scores recommended by the American Council on Education as approved by the faculty. Students must submit official test scores to receive credit. The subjects and credits for which students may receive advanced placement credits are available from the Division Dean and students should check that the CLEP credit is applicable to the students major before proceeding.
SLCC has identified the following guidelines regarding receiving advance credits for CLEP:
- Prior to taking a CLEP examination, the student must check with the Division Dean or Academic Advisor of his/her major to confirm that the credit is applicable to the student’s major.
- All CLEP testing is scheduled through the Testing Center.
- This process involves the payment of a fee for testing, which must be paid in advance.
- The awarding of credit at SLCC under CLEP is based upon three criteria:
- Based on the standard scores recommended by the Commission on Educational Credit for the American Council on Education, SLCC has identified an equivalency in its course offerings.
- SLCC requires a minimum standardized score of 50 to be achieved by a student to be considered to receive credit for any CLEP exam, and the College reserves the ability to request, receive and assess supplementary materials as part of the awarding of college credit.
- That the student is enrolled at the college.
- No more than two different exams may be taken on each test administration date.
- Once the test is completed, the student will be notified whether s/he has passed and to decide if they wish to transcript the credit.
- Semester hours of credit earned by the CLEP examination are assigned an “S” grade. No quality points are earned. Such credit does not enter into grade point average computation.
- Once posted in the transcript, students will be able to schedule courses based on the credit received.
- CLEP testing must be completed prior to the start of the semester they are to be applied.
- Students who wish to transfer CLEP credits to SLCC must request that official score reports be sent to the Registrar.
- The general procedural guidelines will apply and if approved.
- There is no ability to appeal the outcome of this process.
Credit by Departmental Proficiency Challenge Examination
Opportunities are available, in select courses, for students who believe s/he is qualified by experience, previous training, or non-credit coursework to seek credit. Students should initially inquire with the Dean of the appropriate Division or Departmental Chairperson whether the course they seek to challenge is open to challenge. Faculty of each Discipline/Department maintain a list of courses that are approved for this activity.
Students, upon determining the course is eligible, may request and submit the appropriate CPL fee to the Registrar’s office to schedule a departmental proficiency challenge examination. This examination may be of a written nature or a demonstration of competency and skill, or a combination of both. Students must be currently enrolled in other SLCC coursework to be able to request such an examination. The purpose of the comprehensive challenge exam is to demonstrate mastery of the content of a course. Successfully completing this challenge will result, in the course credit being awarded on the student’s transcript with a grade of “S”. Students may challenge a particular course only once.
SLCC has identified the following guidelines regarding receiving advance credits for Challenge Examination:
- A non-refundable CPL fee will be charged prior to administration of the examination.
- Administration of all Challenge Examinations must occur by midterm.
- To pass a Challenge Examination, a student must demonstrate a minimum proficiency of 75% of the written component of the examination and if a practical component is involved, to the satisfaction of the faculty. Students should ascertain the level of competency required prior to submitting to such examination by meeting with the appropriate Divisional Dean/Department Chairperson.
- A student who intends to use credit by Challenge Examination to meet degree requirements of another institution should check the requirements of the receiving institution.
- A student who wishes to take a Challenge Examination for a by-passed course must take the examination by midterm of the semester in which the student is enrolled in the more advanced course.
- A student who fails to meet the minimum written proficiency (75%) and/or competency requirements on the Challenge Examination will be administratively withdrawn from the sequential or higher level course. No course fees or tuition refund will be granted.
- The Division Dean of the course and the Division Dean of the student’s major must approve the credit for Challenge Examinations.
- Challenge Examinations are available only in courses offered at SLCC.
- A student may apply for credit by Challenge Examination only once in the same course.
- A student may not take a Challenge Examination in a course in which s/he has been or is currently enrolled, or which s/he has completed at any college unless it been over 10 years.
- A student who receives Academic Renewal may request a Challenge Examination for any course completed prior to receiving Academic Renewal. A grade of “C” must have been earned in the course when it was taken prior to the granting of Academic Renewal.
- A student may not take a Challenge Examination for a course that s/he has audited.
- The general procedural guidelines will apply and if approved. There is an ability to appeal the outcome of this process, using the Appeal procedures detailed below.
Credit by Life Experience Assessment Program (LEAP)
The Life Experience Assessment Program (LEAP) concerns itself with the idea that what a student knows is more important than how the student acquired the knowledge. In this program, SLCC provides the student the opportunity to report what they know or can do, in terms that relate to given college courses and a way to assess their knowledge or competence in those areas. If the student can demonstrate knowledge and skills in certain areas compared to what a college-trained student knows in these same areas, equal credit is awarded.
A student must be both enrolled and in good standing at the time of a LEAP application and may only make one application for any given course. A non-refundable fee is required prior to the application being accepted.
The general policies concerning credit from non-traditional sources are applicable. LEAP credit is available only if the life experience warrants three (3) or more credit hours. Typically a LEAP application involves the submission of a portfolio and/or documentation and demonstration of competencies. For each applicant, a review committee is established to verify that the student can demonstrate knowledge and skills in the requested area comparable to the knowledge and skills of a college-trained student in the same area.
Those students considering a LEAP application should review the following table and then consult with their Academic Advisor who may direct them to the appropriate Department Chair/Division Dean for further advice concerning the suitability of their proposal. The following table has been constructed to provide guidance:
|Avenues from which LEAP credit can be acquired
|Structured coursework from:
- Vocational/technical/occupational educational programs.
- Nursing, allied health, and medical programs.
- Non-accredited professional schools (art, secretarial, computers, etc.)
- Military & Police training courses
- Enrichment seminars, workshops, and courses.
- Corporate workshops/training
- Specialist training
- Industry badging / certification
- Non-credit coursework
|Typically a portfolio is submitted validating content, contact hours, completion and/or grades if applicable. The portfolio should consist of documentation of the acquisition of the competencies deemed necessary for specific course content. Suitable exhibits and supporting narrative can be constructed using the following:
Alternatively, specific other achievements may be presented as demonstrative of competency in an area such as:
- Course Content/Description (Credit or Noncredit) and Contact Hours
- Drawings, Diagrams, Artwork, etc.
- Work Experience Records and Job Description
- Graduation Certificates
- High School Co-op Work Experience Training Plan
- Narrative of Experiences
- Letters of Recommendations/Testimony
- Successful completion of major projects
- Documentation of significant intellectual input and leadership in activities aligned with the area seeking credit
- Practical demonstrations, at a mastery level of competencies and skills
- A publication, in a recognized press, manuscripts, papers book, textbook and reviews in the area.
|Work Experience (which can include military, police, corporate experience)
||Typically a comprehensive, well-documented portfolio is submitted and where applicable applicant may be required to a demonstrate acquired competencies by practical testing
The following describes the general procedure to obtain credit by Life Experience Assessment Program:
- The student should contact their Program Coordinator or Department Chair to determine if a LEAP application credit will apply toward the student’s degree program. If available, the student will receive comprehensive instructions on the portfolio construction and relevant timeframes and procedure should they decide to apply. The application starts when the student completes the Application for Non-Traditional Credit in the Registrar’s Office and pays the required fee to Student Accounts.
- Following College submission guidelines, the student submits a portfolio documenting life experience with the designated Instructor/Department Chair/Division Dean.
- The College follows its procedure for evaluation of the submission and schedules as required practical demonstrations or supplementary assessment events. The final outcome is a written statement to the student approving or denying submission.
- If successful, the Instructor submits the form to the Registrar’s Office with an appropriate grade for processing.
A successful completion of a LEAP application will result, in the course credit being awarded on the student’s transcript with a grade of “S.”
The general procedural guidelines will apply and if approved. There is an ability to appeal the outcome of this process, using the Appeal procedures detailed below.
Industry Based & Professional Certification Credit
Students who are currently enrolled and have previously successfully completed industry-based or professional certifications should contact the Division Dean of the student’s major to ascertain if equivalencies to credit courses have been established or may be available. As SLCC experience grows, a crosswalk of industry certifications and equivalent credit courses will be established and maintained by the Division housing the equivalent courses. This crosswalk will be reviewed periodically and comparisons will only be made on the currently approved crosswalk at the time the student applies. A student may not receive credit toward a degree solely on the basis of an Industry or Professional Certification. The College reserves the ability to request, receive and assess supplementary assessment materials to establish course equivalencies. For all applications, the student must supply valid documentation authenticating the certification(s) and send this to the Office of the Registrar for college evaluation and filing with the student’s records. Generally, Industry and professional certification will be valid only if considered current by granting authority.
This non-traditional credit granting process must be requested starting with the Registrar. The process must be completed by the midterm of the semester in which it has been requested. The Division Dean/Department Chair reviews the request to determine if the specific industry-based certification is included on the College’s Industry-Based Certification Crosswalk. If the specific certification is listed on the Crosswalk, the Division Dean documents the appropriate college credit to be awarded and forwards the approved application to the Registrar’s Office for potential posting of the credit to the student’s transcript, with a copy to the student.
A student who intends to use credit received from industry-based certification to meet degree requirements of another institution should check the requirements of the receiving institution.
The general procedural guidelines will apply and if approved, with a grade of “S.” There is no ability to appeal the outcome of this process.
Credit by Police and Military Courses
Students who have taken courses as part of armed services training or police academies may apply at the Registrar’s office for acceptance of these courses. The credit recommendations from the American Council on Education are used to help determine equivalent credit awards. The Division Dean will determine which credits earned through military or police academy training are applicable towards graduation and will forward this information to the Registrar. These hours count as part of the hours of non-traditional credit applicable toward a degree or certificate.
Procedure for Peace Officer Standards and Training Academy Credit:
SLCC awards up to 15 credit hours to officers who can show proof of successful completion of a Peace Officer Standards and Training Academy. These 15 credit hours will be applied as credit for prior learning. In order to be eligible to receive such credits, students will be required to present a picture I.D. along with their POST certification. Students must also have Criminal Justice selected as a major and must have completed at least three credit hours toward their degree before the transfer credit is applied. Students will be awarded an “S” for the following courses:
- CJUS 1010: Introduction to Criminal Justice
- CJUS 2010: Police Process
- CJUS 2080: Police - Community Relations
- CJUS 2090: Criminal Justice Practicum
- **Other approved CJUS elective (3 credit hours)
Procedure for the Evaluation of Military Credit:
- The student should request “official” military transcripts through the Joint Service Transcript System or The Community College of the Air Force. The Registrar will submit the student’s request to the appropriate Division Dean for evaluation.
- The American Council on Education credit evaluation is sent to the Division Dean for final evaluation. The Dean, in consultation with appropriate Department Chairs, will evaluate the materials provided and determine final course equivalencies. The outcome will be communicated to the Registrar who will inform the student and, place the course(s) on the student transcript.
- The general procedural guidelines will apply, and if approved, the course(s) added to their transcript with a grade of “S.” There is no ability to appeal the outcome of this process.
Credit for Non-Credit Courses
Credit is available to students who have mastered the equivalent content of a course through participation in a non-credit course(s). A student is able to demonstrate competency in the college course content through successful completion of either a departmental proficiency Challenge Examination or a Portfolio Review. Only the college courses approved by the Faculty in the Discipline/Department are eligible for the challenge. Students must be currently admitted and enrolled in SLCC coursework to request credit for non-credit courses.
Below are the general procedures to obtain credit for non-credit courses by departmental proficiency Challenge Examination:
- Contact appropriate Program Coordinator or Department Chair to determine if the completed noncredit learning could/will apply toward the student’s degree program.
- Student seeks approval from the Divisional Dean.
- The student should then complete the Application for Non-Credit Courses Examination Credit in the Registrar’s Office.
- Student completes the challenge exam with the Divisional Dean’s designated Instructor
- Divisional Dean submits the form to the Registrar’s Office with an appropriate grade for transcription processing
Below are the procedures to obtain credit by Portfolio Review for non-credit courses:
- Contact appropriate Program Coordinator or Department Chair to determine if credit will apply toward the student’s degree program.
- Student seeks approval from the Division Dean.
- The student who desires to apply for credit by Portfolio Review should then complete the Application for Non-Credit Courses in the Registrar’s Office.
- Student submits a portfolio documenting completion of a non-credit course with the courses objectives and evidence of applying the objectives successfully with the Divisional Dean.
- Divisional Dean submits the form to the Registrar’s Office with an appropriate grade for processing.
The general procedural guidelines will apply, and if approved, the course(s) added to their transcript with a grade of “S.” There is no ability to appeal the outcome of this process.
Non Traditional Credits from Other Institutions
South Louisiana Community College may accept non-traditional credits that have been awarded by other regionally accredited institutions.
Acceptance will be based on the close evaluation completed conjointly by the Registrar and the appropriate Division Dean.
Transfer students who have been previously awarded non-traditional credits at other institutions should meet with the appropriate Division Dean to discuss the acceptance of such credit toward a degree at South Louisiana Community College.
The general procedural guidelines will apply, and if approved, the course(s) added to their transcript with a grade of “S.” There is no ability to appeal the outcome of this process.
Appeal Process Criteria
Students may not appeal CPL decisions based on disagreements with grade-weighting methods or scores earned on standardized exams. The methods of CPL that can be appealed are credit award decisions based on challenge exams or portfolios, due to the following reasons:
o a score miscalculation,
o an error in a challenge exam that would change the grade outcome
Process for Appealing Denied CPL Credit
A student wishing to appeal a denial of credit on a portfolio, an internally created challenge exam, or the evaluation of their Life Experience Assessment Program will complete the following steps:
- Print and complete the Credit for Prior Learning Appeal Form.
- Include any supporting documentation that may support the appeal.
- Submit the completed Credit for Prior Learning Appeal Form along with any supporting documentation to the Academic Division (Business, IT and Workforce, Liberal Arts and Humanities, Nursing and Allied Health, STEM, Transportation and Energy) from which credit is being sought.
- Appeals must be submitted within 10 business days of a written notice of credit denial.
- The student will be notified of the appeal decision within 3 weeks of the submission.
Evaluation of Transfer Credits for Degree-Seeking Students
Transfer credits from all regionally accredited institutions of higher education for degree-seeking students are recorded on the student’s permanent academic records. The acceptance of transfer credits to meet degree program will be governed by the following guidelines:
The Registrar’s Office in coordination with the Division Deans oversees the evaluation and review of official transcripts to determine whether the credit earned were earned at an accredited institution and determine which credits are acceptable to the College. Each division assesses the transfer credits taking into consideration how long ago the course was taken (typically anything outside of 10-15 years is not valid unless the student holds a previous degree) and if a student received a previous degree from an accredited institution of higher education. Students with credits older than 10 years, without a previous degree from an accredited institution of higher education, seeking credit for ENGL 1010 and 1020 should contact the Testing Department to take the English Department Proficiency Check.
This transfer evaluation is completed no later than the end of the first semester of enrollment at SLCC.
- A grade of “C” or better is required in coursed within the student’s major.
- A grade of “C” or better is required for any course that satisfies a prerequisite.
- The minimum grade accepted for all transfer credits is a “C” or better.
- Grades for transferred courses will be interpreted according to the South Louisiana Community College grading scale and will be recorded as follow:
- Grades of W, WA, WB, WC, WD, and WP will not be recorded.
- Plus (+) or minus (-) symbols will be disregarded.
- Grades of Pass, Credit andSatisfactory will be treated as Satisfactory.
- Grades of NC (no credit) will not be recorded.
- Incomplete (I) grades will not be recorded.
If the transfer work was earned in quarter hours, the credits will be converted to semester hours. (The number of quarter hours times 2/3 equals the number of semester hours).
Credits in courses from foreign countries and universities may only be accepted based on an interpretation of the credits by a suitable foreign transcript translation service.
Transfer students are reminded that at least 25 percent of courses required for a degree must be completed at SLCC and that select restrictions may apply in relation to programs of study. Students anticipating transfer credits should refer to these restrictions that are detailed below each program of study later in this catalog.
Credit from Non-regionally Accredited Institutions
Transfer credit from non-regionally accredited institutions may be accepted by SLCC. Special consideration is given to courses from institutions listed in the Louisiana Board of Regents Student Transfer Guide and General Education Transfer Matrix. Proprietary business schools and health professions colleges are often non-regionally accredited institutions.
Students desiring to transfer credits from such institutions may request a review of their transcripts by the appropriate Division Dean. The general procedural guidelines will apply and if approved, to have the course(s) added to their transcript.