How Do I Earn Credit for Prior Learning? | GCTC

How Do I Earn Credit for Prior Learning?

What Is Credit for Prior Learning?

Credit for prior learning is a term used to describe knowledge gained outside of a traditional academic environment. Potential areas for credit for prior learning can include:

  • Work experience
  • Participation in employer training programs
  • Military service
  • Independent study
  • Volunteer work or community service
  • Study of open source courseware

By demonstrating the knowledge gained through these experiences, via various prior learning assessments (PLAs), you may be able to earn college credit. Credit for prior learning is the same credit that would be awarded if you learned through a traditional class.

How Can I Use Credit for Prior Learning?

Credit for prior learning applies toward majors, minors, concentrations, general education requirements, and electives that count toward the degree or certificate you're seeking. They can also satisfy prerequisite requirements.

What Are the Requirements for Using Credit for Prior Learning?

Credit for prior learning can only be awarded to students who have been admitted to a KCTCS college.

We also recommend that any students interested in credit for prior learning meet with their academic advisors to ensure that the credit they're interested in will meet requirements for their academic programs. Changing majors may results in the reassessment of the credit and how it can be used toward the new program's educational requirements.

How Much Prior Learning Credit Can I Use?

KCTCS colleges will honor a maximum of 30 credit hours of prior learning credit for an associate's degree. However, whether you're seeking a certificate, diploma, or degree, at least 25% of the credit hours required for a credential must be completed at the KCTCS college awarding the credential. This means that the amount of prior learning credit you can apply to your credential may be less than the full 30 credit hours.


Reach out to Elsa Black for more information.