School of Continuing and Professional Studies > Student Resources > Undergraduate Resources > Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) > Independent Learning Pursuits (ILPs)

Competence-based PLA (formerly known as ILPs)

​​Competence-based PLA (formerly known as ILPs) is for students in the following programs:

  • BA with an Individualized Focus Area (BAIFA)
  • BA in Computing (BAC)
  • BA in General Business (BAGB)

Students request credit for college level learning experiences obtained through professional development in the workplace, courses and workshops in non-accredited programs and independent learning—whether pursued at home, workplace or school. The learning experience may have been accomplished prior to or during studies at SCPS.

A specific competence can be demonstrated by providing evidence of learning related to each of criteria of the competence statement. A submission includes completing the Competence-based PLA Submission Form and providing evidence. Evidence can be a paper that relates personal or professional experience to the ideas of others, cited in the paper. In addition, other artifacts can be presented.

A $150 fee will be charged upon submission of the Competence-based PLA. Once the form has been submitted it is routed to the Office of Prior Learning Assessment which determines if the Competence-based PLA is ready for review by a content expert. The content expert will hold an advanced degree in a field related to the competence requested and will determine if the PLA passes, fails, or should be resubmitted with revision. If a requested revision is submitted but not approved, the student can take a course or initiate a new Competence-based PLA with a charge of $150. Students will receive an email from Undergraduate Resources acknowledging submission and after the assessment is completed.

Time Considerations

  • In Fall Quarter, passing submissions received aft​​​​​er October 28, 2020 will not appear on student records until Winter Quarter.
  • Students should submit all of their PLA no later than 2 quarters before their planned graduation.

Competence-based PLA Resources

Competence-based PLA Examples

These writing samples are examples of how to write to different competences and competence areas. However for specific and up-to-date submission criteria, please refer to the Competence-based PLA FAQ and Competence-based PLA Checklist for current submission requirements.

Competence Area

Project Title


Fast Car


Warsaw, Chicago, and Greek Tragedies


Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore Flowers and Plants


My Skydiving Mishaps


Color in Our Daily Lives​​​


Reading to the Hard of Understanding