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Impact and Planning
Five Things Policymakers Should Know About Short-Term Credentials

Students Hold High Hopes That a Short-Term Credential Will Allow Them to Enter a New Field

Feb. 22, 2021
New America came out with a brief this week that uses data from the Adult Training and Education Survey, combined with insights from a series of focus groups, which suggest that many short-term programs fall short of their promises, with many graduates left unemployed or facing very poor earnings. Post-completion earnings are especially low for…
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Impact and Planning
Undergraduate Degree Earners

Seventh in the Series

Jan. 28, 2021
The Undergraduate Degree Earners report series, published annually, provides demographic and educational profile data for all students graduating with an associate, bachelor’s, or certificate. In the current report, the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center profiles graduates in the 2019-20 academic year, with a focus on first-time versus non-first-time graduates, and changes in demographics and education credentials received…
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Impact and Planning
Bendable Lifelong Learning System

Developmental Evaluation Report

Dec. 18, 2020
Bendable, a lifelong learning platform, aims to provide all residents of South Bend, Indiana, with access to learning in order to create more resilient individuals, economies, and communities. FSG was commissioned by the Lumina Foundation to conduct a developmental evaluation of Bendable's 2020 calendar year. This work built on a prior engagement when in 2019,…
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Impact and Planning
PLA from the Student’s Perspective

Lessons Learned from Survey and Interview Data

Dec. 2, 2020
This brief draws on data from a survey administered to 1,184 current college students and from interviews with six college students to better understand how students access (or not) opportunities to earn credit for prior learning. Lack of information about PLA was cited as a top barrier to accessing PLA. For those students that did…
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Impact and Planning
The Current State of Higher Learning Policies

Greater awareness of prior learning policies can help to increase completion

Nov. 20, 2020
This brief investigates the critical role states, accrediting bodies, and the federal government can play in making credit for prior learning more accessible and affordable for students with low incomes, students of color, immigrants, and adult learners.
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Impact and Planning
Credit by Examination

Recognizing Learning and Supporting Adult Learners

Nov. 10, 2020
Credit by examination is a foundational practice of Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) that serves as a widely used and accessible form of awarding postsecondary credits for prior learning acquired both in and out of the classroom setting.
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Impact and Planning
Recent Developments in Prior Learning

Workers who potentially have the most to gain by achieving a college-level credential are disproportionately non-white

Nov. 10, 2020
This brief explores the relationship between the recognition of prior learning and employers as more employers look for ways to reskill existing employees in a rapidly changing labor market. Because such relationships are still fairly new and vary considerably, three case studies are used to highlight both promising practices in RPL associated with employers as…
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Impact and Planning
Credit for Prior Learning in the Community College

A Case from Colorado

Oct. 29, 2020
The Education and Employment Research Center conducted a case study of the colleges in the Colorado Community College System to better understand the impact of grant funding on credit for prior learning (CPL) policy and practice implementation. Grant funding for CPL policy and practice implementation can ignite change but will not necessarily lead to sustained…
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Impact and Planning
HBCUs and Prior Learning Assessments
Oct. 15, 2020
This brief explores the ways in which HBCUs acknowledge and award postsecondary credit to students for college-level learning that took place outside of the institution as a way to improve student outcomes. Thurgood Marshall College Fund undertook research that reviewed information publicly available regarding PLA policies and information on HBCU websites and engaged in a…
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Impact and Planning
Learning Recognition and the Future of Higher Education

A Vision for a Post-Pandemic Learning Ecosystem

Sept. 10, 2020
The authors of this brief conducted conversations with several leaders of change within the higher education landscape. Drawing on these conversations, the authors suggest what a future higher education model could - and should - look like in order to reflect the realities of the changing world of work post-COVID while taking advantage of advances…
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