Prior Learning Assessment

Bowling Green State University recognizes learning acquired from experiences outside a formal classroom setting by offering students the opportunity to earn academic credit through portfolio assessment, the College Level Examination Program (CLEP), and departmental credit by examination.

Portfolio assessment

The portfolio program is designed primarily for students who have gained college-level learning through significant volunteer work, work-related training, or work experience. Developing a portfolio is one important way to document learning that has been acquired outside a formal classroom setting and to gain academic credits toward your degree. This process allows you to demonstrate that knowledge and skills you already possess correspond to the expected learning outcomes from BGSU courses. 

General Steps:

  1. Contact NTMSS to discuss portfolio assessment with an advisor.  The advisor will help you determine what courses may be a fit to pursue credit via portfolio and give you overall structural guidelines for the final product you will develop.
  2. NTMSS will then connect you with a faculty member who will oversee the development of your portfolio.  You will work with that faculty member to outline the learning outcomes of the course that you need to document your prior learning in the portfolio.
  3. The final portfolio is submitted to NTMSS along with the evaluation fee ($70 per course).  The faculty member will then review the portfolio and determine if credit should be awarded.  NTMSS then works with Registration and Records to have the credit posted.

College Level Examination Program (CLEP)

The College Level Examination Program is a nationwide credit-by-examination program which offers persons of all ages and backgrounds an opportunity to obtain recognition for college-level achievement, regardless of where, when, or how the knowledge has been acquired—through formal study, independent reading, employment, noncredit courses or other learning experiences.

Bowling Green State University offers academic credit for some, but not all CLEP subject examinations offered by the College Board. Examinations accepted and criteria for awarding credit can be found in the Undergraduate Catalog. If you achieve the criteria established for the examination, you will be awarded credit for the specific course(s). For helpful information concerning content of tests and preparation for them, please visit the following link to the CLEP Prep Center.

As a national testing center, BGSU administers CLEP examinations on the Bowling Green campus through the Office of Disability Services. The Testing Center schedules and administers the tests (419-372-7533). More information about CLEP examination scheduling, costs and score reporting, can be found at BGSU’s National Testing Center website.

Credit by Exam

Individual academic departments coordinate the credit by exam process.  The full academic policy concerning earning credit in this manner can be found in the Undergraduate Catalog.