Designing Competency-based PLA Pathways to Scale Up Completion and Learner Success

Nan Travers

Project Team
  • Dr. Michele Forte, SUNY Empire State College

Empire State College

2016

Tier Three

Project Abstract:

SUNY Empire State College will combine Competency-Based Education (CBE) with Prior Learning Assessment (PLA). Using Flatworld, a competency-based learning platform, faculty teams will develop CBE PLA for: a) SUNY Transfer Path areas of Business, Computer Science, and Criminal Justice/Criminology; b) developmental skills in basic communications and mathematics to align with SUNY General Education learning outcomes; and c) workplace learning acquired through the Center for Disability Services in Human Services/ Human Services Management. The professional development for competency development and CBE PLA application process will be documented for consistency across teams and to share outside of this project. An advisory board consisting of faculty and administrators from other SUNY institutions will provide input on the development process and feedback on the end results. This open source project will provide a model for future CBE and CBE PLA development that can be used across other institutions.

Project Outcome:

Faculty teams were charged with creating a minimum of one CBE PLA; thus far, teams are on track to create more than one. Teams were charged with three areas: SUNY Transfer Path areas of Business, Computer Science, and Criminal Justice/Criminology (top PLA areas); developmental skills in the areas of basic communications (reading and writing) and mathematics (aligns with SUNY General Education learning outcomes); workplace learning acquired through employment in the area of Human Services/Human Services Management. This project builds upon previous work with PLA and e-portfolios, which has shown success for students to achieve their PLA credits.

Project Outcome Report