Marian University recognizes that learning may take place outside a classroom setting and will grant up to 30 undergraduate credits* for documented evidence of experiential learning. A student seeking credit for experiential learning must petition Marian University for credit and provide evidence of learning in relation to Marian University’s institutional and/or program-level student learning outcomes. Faculty with expertise in the academic area evaluate the student’s petition and award credit based on the documented evidence of learning.

*Students can apply a total of 30 credits of any combination of credit by examination or experiential learning credit toward the undergraduate degree.

Considerations for the award of credit include:

  • The educational quality of the learning experience, validated through a process of review;
  • The comparability of the nature, content, and level of the learning experience to that offered by Marian University; and
  • The appropriateness and applicability of the learning experience to the programs offered by Marian University, in light of the student’s educational goals.

The Experiential Learning Assessment Process

Experiential Learning Assessment at Marian University is based on the review of a portfolio of evidence documenting the college-level knowledge, skills, and dispositions to act learned in a substantive life experience. The process is based on the guidelines and recommendations of the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL). Students completing the process will:

  • Develop an inventory of all college-level learning experiences that are not documented in the form of academic credit, degrees, or certificates.
  • Map experiential learning to Marian University learning outcomes, including content learning outcomes.
  • Develop the Prior Learning Portfolio to align evidence of learning to outcomes, and make the case for the award or credit.

Getting Started

The Experiential Learning Assessment (ELA) process is a collaboration between student, faculty and staff. It is administered by the Director of Assurance for Learning, in the Office of Institutional Effectiveness. Students seeking credit for experiential learning must schedule an appointment with the Director to initiate the process.

For more information regarding Experiential Learning Assessment, please contact the Director of Assurance for Learning at or 920.923.8943.