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Instructions and Application 

Undergraduate credit may be granted for college-level learning you achieved outside the classroom through relevant work experience, employer sponsored training or internships, community activities, volunteer work, living in another culture, self-guided education, or artistic development. PLA portfolio credit is only available to current undergraduate degree students. 

The basis for granting credit will be a PLA portfolio of documentation that you prepare for the appropriate department chair or program director. Currently, most requests for PLA credit are for an individual course or two for which the student can document college-level learning achieved outside the classroom.

Credit will be granted only for documented learning that is clearly germane to your degree program, not for experience per se. Portfolios should include a description of the training/learning with any documentation that demonstrates the content or level of learning (such as letters from a supervisor or trainer). Portfolios may be presented in a variety of formats as appropriate to the discipline (written or other forms such as video, certificates indicating completion of training, etc.). 

The chair or program director will recommend the number and type of credits to be awarded based on the portfolio submitted and notify the student via email (with copy to and This may be designated as elective credit or may satisfy a program requirement as an equivalent course or as a substitution for a required course. Use the PLA interest form below to begin the process.

Students pay an assessment fee which will be processed through the Bursar’s Office and the Records Office will post the credits to your official transcript as PLA credit. PLA credits are not graded and are not calculated in GPA nor do they count toward the college’s residency requirement. 

PLA portfolio credit assessment fee (2020-2021):

$15/credit up to 15 credits

$10/credit over 15 credits

We are in the planning and development stages of a first adult degree completion program which will include a significant portfolio requirement as part of the major concentration.

Note:  Prior learning credit may not be listed on a second bachelor’s degree plan of study. A second degree plan of study requires a minimum of 30 Rhode Island College credits. Course/credit proficiency, field experience, prior learning portfolio credit or transfer credit is not counted towards the second degree 30-credit-hour requirement.


NOCTI Credit:  The NOCTI Workplace Competency Credential provides 23 elective credits for students pursuing a degree at RIC in Technology Education. Students must submit the NOCTI certificate to the Admissions Office as part of the application process. Credits will be posted once the student is officially enrolled. A portfolio is not required.

CNA License:  Undergraduate students who have earned a state-approved Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) license will be awarded 4 elective credits. Students must submit an official copy of their current CNA license to the Admissions Office as part of the application process or to the Records Office if already enrolled. Credits will be posted once the student is officially enrolled. A portfolio is not required. NOTE: Undergraduate nursing students must have a review by the School of Nursing to determine eligibility for credit.

PLA Interest Form

Page last updated: December 15, 2020