Undergraduate Catalog: 2021-22

Prior Learning Assessment

Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) is a process used to earn college credit for learning that has been acquired outside of the traditional classroom. A maximum of 30 credit hours can be earned toward a Bachelor degree and 15 credit hours can be earned toward an Associate degree. While credit is awarded for prior learning, no grades are assigned. Certain programs cannot award credit for prior learning because of rules created by Indiana licensing and regulatory agencies. No duplication of credit is allowed.

Proficiency Examinations

A description and listing of proficiency tests offered by outside agencies is available from the Registrar’s Office. In addition, some academic departments at the University of Saint Francis offer challenge examinations that allow a student to demonstrate college-level competency by means of internally constructed examinations. These are not available in all departments; please contact the specific department if you would like more information.

Military Training

The American Council on Education (ACE) has worked cooperatively with the Department of Defense (DOD) and the Armed Services to establish standards for recognizing learning acquired in military service. This learning may be worth college credit. The student must submit a military transcript (e.g., AARTS, College of the Air Force, etc.), DD214, and/or DD295 to the Registrar’s office for evaluation.


The student-prepared prior learning portfolio is the most commonly accepted method used to evaluate prior learning. It is a collection of narratives and written documentation that articulates a student’s academically relevant, non-college classroom learning on a per course basis.