Chicago, IL – The Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL) announced its webinar at 12 pm CDT on October 9 to unveil and discuss the findings of its new report, “Random Access: Examining the Latino Student Experience with Prior Learning Assessment (PLA)” on October 9, Pamela Tate, CAEL CEO and President announced today. PLA provides opportunities to evaluate a student’s learning from work or life experience for the purpose of awarding college credit. For students whose experiential learning is demonstrably at the college level, PLA saves students time and money on their pathway to a degree.
In announcing the webinar Tate said, “This report was conducted in partnership with Excelencia in Education and examined the experiences of Latino students with PLA at 10 postsecondary institutions in the U.S. between 2010 and 2013. The study’s findings suggest specific strategies for more effective outreach to Latino students, as well as other important target populations on PLA. This webinar will be a valuable opportunity to learn about those findings and what it means to both adult learners and the institutions that are working to meet those higher education goals.”
The study analyzed more than 32,000 student academic records, as well as interviews with Latino students and PLA administrators and examined how Latino students engage with PLA in terms of methods used, number of credits earned, and areas of study for which credits were earned. It also investigated the role that institutions play in encouraging Latino students to take advantage of PLA. The study was coauthored by CAEL Associate Vice President, Research and Policy Development, Rebecca Klein-Collins and CAEL Research Associate, Richard Olson.
Added Tate, “We know that adult students with PLA credit are two-and-a-half times more likely to earn their degrees compared to adult students without PLA credit (Klein-Collins, 2010), yet compared to non-Latinos, fewer Latino students take advantage of this opportunity. During the webinar we will discuss the study’s specific strategies for institutions to take in order to support Latino students – as well as other populations – in their efforts to earn credit for what they already know.”