8M+

Californian residents have filed for unemployment since March.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

4M

Californians have some college credits but no degree.

Source: California Competes

51%

of Californians without a degree who could benefit from credit for prior learning are people of color.

Source: California Competes

Recent Events

Californians Deserve Credit Town Hall

September 29, 2020
12:00PM-1:30PM PDT

The first of many conversations to engage educators, policymakers, and community organizations in ensuring more Californians receive the credit they deserve.

Watch Recording

The How

The way we measure learning is outdated. We give credit through a centuries-old approach that relies on classroom time and credit hours—privileging students who can afford to navigate more traditional pathways while reinforcing inequitable barriers for those not well served by a time-based approach. Here’s how two new approaches—if done with a focus on equity and quality—can help us build systems that recognize the most important educational outcome: learning.

Credit For Prior Learning

When an experienced student chooses to pursue a degree, credential, or certificate they shouldn’t have to start from scratch. Their relevant prior learning—no matter where it happened—should be validated and given credit. This can happen in numerous ways, from improving credit transfer to creating rigorous means of assessing what they already know. Credit for Prior Learning saves students valuable time and money by accelerating their path to a degree, credential, or certificate.

Learn More

Competency-Based Education

This approach enables students to progress in their education based on demonstrations of their knowledge and skills instead of the amount of time they spend in a course.

Learn More
  • 1. CPL

    Credit For Prior Learning

    When an experienced student chooses to pursue a degree, credential, or certificate they shouldn’t have to start from scratch. Their relevant prior learning—no matter where it happened—should be validated and given credit. This can happen in numerous ways, from improving credit transfer to creating rigorous means of assessing what they already know. Credit for Prior Learning saves students valuable time and money by accelerating their path to a degree, credential, or certificate.

    Learn More
  • 2. CBE

    Competency-Based Education

    This approach enables students to progress in their education based on demonstrations of their knowledge and skills instead of the amount of time they spend in a course.

    Learn More

Resources

Credit for Prior Learning: Leveraging Past Learning to Close Present-Day Equity Gaps

California Competes

This brief outlines how and why credit for prior learning (CPL) deserves a more prominent role among college and university programs offered for California adults.

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Competency-Based Education: A Strategy for Skills Upgrading in California

California EDGE Coalition

This policy brief examines the ways in which other states are now successfully employing competency-based approaches to teaching and learning.

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Side by Side: Comparing Credit for Prior Learning and Competency-Based Education

California Competes

This publication compares the CPL and CBE models and underscores how they both differ from traditional seat-time based instruction.

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Make It Count: Recognizing Prior Learning for Workforce Development

Association of Community College Trustees

This report examines the practice of awarding credit for prior learning as part of community colleges’ workforce development strategies.

Read More