2021-2022 Course Catalog

Prior Learning Assessment

Chatham's Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) program grants degree-seeking students the ability to be awarded academic credit for prior learning knowledge gained in advance of enrolling at Chatham. Knowledge gained from employment, job training, independent study, open courseware, volunteer and civic duties, military service and travel are just some examples
that may prepare a student to earn credit through our Prior Learning Assessment program. PLA credit may be awarded either through the development of a portfolio or by attaining a passing score on a challenge exam.

Portfolio Development: Based on course-specific learning outcomes, students assemble a portfolio that consists of a written narrative along with supporting documentation that demonstrates a student's proficiency in the course learning outcomes.

Credit-by-Exam: A student may earn credit for a course by meeting established guidelines on standardized or challenge exams as approved by the program or department. 

A student may not receive credit by examination for a course:

• which the student has failed
• for which the student has already received credit
• for which the student is presently registered after the add-drop period.

All requests for PLA credit must be made in writing to the appropriate program director or department chair. Per each program, PLA may be unavailable or restricted (link to list). Please consult with each program director for a list of approved courses.

Undergraduate PLA
Undergraduate degree-seeking students may earn up to 60 credits through the PLA Program. A maximum of 90 credits can be awarded through PLA and transfer credit.

A maximum of 6 credits earned through the portfolio development program may count towards Chatham University's residency requirement.

PLA credits cannot be granted for Health & Wellness courses (PED) or Student Development courses (SDE).

Undergraduate Portfolio Development Fees: $83 per credit assessed ($249 per 3-credit course). Undergraduate credit by Exam Fees: CLEP and DSST exams are $85 per exam plus a $20 administration fee.

Graduate PLA
Chatham University students may earn no more than 20% of their graduate degree requirements through transfer credit and Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) in specific graduate degree programs.

Graduate Portfolio Development Fees: PLA credit assessed through Portfolio Development will incur a fee in the amount of 50% of the graduate per-credit tuition rate plus college fee. Students will be billed at the time that credit is awarded. The awarding of credit for prior learning occurs upon review of a successful portfolio or other appropriate means and does not coincide with the scheduled offering of a course.

NOTE: The PLA fee is not eligible for federal, state, or institutional financial aid; however, a no interest, no application fee payment plan may be available.

For more information about the Prior Learning Assessment program click here.