Prior Learning Assessment

The Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) Program can help you attain equivalent credit for the college level learning you have achieved outside the traditional college classroom. PLA can save you time and money because you may not be required to take courses for the material you have already learned. Follow the steps below before registering for classes. Note that equivalent credit is not awarded for experience, but for learning that matches a particular course in your Bucks Program of Study.

Follow these Steps to Get Started

  1. Compare your required courses with your prior learning by viewing your Program of Study. To view required courses in your Program of Study, sign into Bucks Self Service, click on the student planning tab, and click on my progress.
  2. Research the Pathway for the assessment method to document your learning.
  3. Decide if you are going to take an exam, provide paper credentials, or create a portfolio.
  4. Complete and submit the PLA Application (PDF) with required documentation.
  5. Schedule an advising appointment with the PLA Coordinator to discuss your PLA plan, if desired. This step is required for creating a portfolio; however, other pathways do not require this meeting.

Create Your PLA Plan

The complexity of the PLA process can vary.

Some PLA plans, such as Challenge by Exam (CBE), are straightforward and may not require advising - Feel free to create and pursue your PLA plan by using the resources available on these PLA web pages.

Other situations may be complex or involve multiple assessment methods (Pathways) - You may benefit by consulting with the PLA Office for advising before creating your PLA plan.

Feel free to contact the PLA Office directly regarding your questions, concerns, and/or PLA plan.