A successful PLA program is contingent upon integration into the student outreach and support processes. Prospective and current students may not be aware that their prior learning can be assessed for college-level credit, and having a mentor to connect a student to a PLA evaluator is important.
Student outreach through marketing, enrollment and admissions
PLA applies to both the accessibility and affordability of a pursuing a college degree for adult learners or students who have stopped-out of their academic careers citing financial and time investments.
Establishing points of contact throughout life-cycle of the student
Establishing relationships with points of contact throughout the PLA evaluation process and a student’s enrollment at the institution is critical – from advisors to professors to financial aid staff.
Information easily accessible through website and orientation
The availability of information regarding Prior Learning Assessment is key. Integrating this information into recruitment and retention messaging will provide necessary background for students to be aware of their options.
Targeting specific groups and creating appropriate communication plans
There are key audiences for whom PLA may be of extra value – members of the military community, low-income students, or adult learners who have been in the workforce and may test-out of a subject. The messaging to each of these groups varies and a specific communication plan should be applied.