School of Continuing and Professional Studies > Academics > Office of Prior Learning Assessment > robertainterview

Robert A. Interview (Course match PLA for DCM 302 – Project Management)

Robert A. received credit for a degree requirement (DCM 302 –Project Management) through a Course Match PLA project​. He says Prior Learning Assessment brings “value to what you do every day" by being able “to quantify [the learning and experience you already have] into university terms and university values." At work, we often move from one project to the next. We move past these projects never pausing to reflect and “sing our own praises."

To prepare for completing a PLA project, Robert A. took RPL 101 to make sure he was able to use some of the life experience he has had in order to gain some extra credit. Another consideration for Robert was the financial implications since “the fee is cheaper than a 4-credit class." RPL 101 helped Robert identify a class to match his experience to. Robert notes “when you are looking at some of the syllabuses you can see how they relate to real world experiences."

The process of compiling a PLA project was labor intensive. But Robert A. says a structured approach really helped. For his first project, he used the 10 weeks of RPL 101 to pull his materials together. One tool he found particularly useful was a grid that helped align the learning outcomes to his experience and research to the learning outcomes of DCM 302.

In order to demonstrate the connections, Robert A. began by pulling the learning outcomes from the DCM 302 Syllabus and grouping those that were similar together. Within those groups, he determined a central theme that could be used to conduct research through EBSCOhost (one of many academic search engines available to students through the DePaul Library​). He then “connected the dots" between learning outcomes, research and experience. Robert advises the importance in making connections between research and experience because only referring to experience will not demonstrate the learning a PLA project needs. He also provided an introduction that provided an overview of the experience and listed all of the learning outcomes he was going to cover.​

While PLA Projects require work, they are a way to sing your own praises and to earn credit for knowledge you already have.