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I.    Purpose

A.    The purpose of this Transfer Credit for Prior Learning Examinations Policy (“Policy”) is to establish the rules regarding the award academic credit for Prior Learning Examinations, as defined below, by Anne Arundel Community College (“College”).

II.    Scope and Applicability

A.    This Policy applies to Students who wish to be awarded academic credit for Prior Learning Examinations, as defined below. 

B.    This Policy does not apply to credit from other Non-Traditional Sources, as defined below.

III.    Definitions

A.    Catalog means the official reference for the College’s academic programs, courses, and academic regulations.

B.    Credit for Prior Learning means credit granted toward the award of a certificate or degree for experiential learning that can be shown through various means of assessment to be the equivalent of learning gained through formal collegiate instruction, including Prior Learning Examinations and Non-Traditional Sources.

C.    Elective means any course among the College’s credit courses of instruction that does not meet a General Education Requirement or Program Requirement in a student’s selected Program of Study.

D.    Faculty means subject matter experts on a specific program of study, including instructors, instructional specialists, deans and assistant deans. Faculty does not include non-academic staff.

E.    General Education Requirement means a course that is classified as part of the foundational, interdisciplinary curriculum fostering knowledge, skills, and perspectives that enable critical thinking, global awareness, lifelong learning, and community engagement offered or accepted by the College as meeting the general education program requirements under Maryland law.

F.    Non-Traditional Sources include military experience, life and work experiences, clinical practice and cooperative education experiences, credit awarded through articulation agreements, technical courses from career programs, program pathways, proficiency assessment, department examination, portfolio assessment, Prior Learning Examinations, and any other Credit for Prior Learning deemed acceptable by the College.

G.    Official Score Report means a score report received directly from a Testing Agency. 

H.    Prior Learning Examinations include Advanced Placement Program Examinations (“AP”), Cambridge Advanced International Certificate of Education Diploma Examinations (“AICE”), College-Level Examination Program Examinations (“CLEP”), International Baccalaureate Diploma Program Examinations (“IB”), Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (“DANTES”) Subject Standardized Tests (“DSST”), and any other standardized examination deemed acceptable by the College. 

I.    Program of Study, also referred to as major, means a structured and coherent course of study with clearly defined learning objectives and intended student learning outcomes, leading to the award of a certificate or degree, that requires the completion of a specified number of course credits from among a prescribed group of General Education Requirements, Electives, and/or Program Requirement courses.

J.    Program Requirement means any course required to complete a Student's selected Program of Study.

K.    Student means an individual who has completed an admissions application with the College.

L.    Testing Agency means The College Board, DANTES, International Baccalaureate, or Cambridge International.

IV.    Awarding Credit

A.    The College may award academic credit for scores of three (3) or higher on AP exams, 50 or higher on CLEP, C or higher on AICE, five (5) or higher on IB, 400 or higher on DSST, and scores for any other standardized examination deemed acceptable by the College.

B.    Faculty will review the Prior Learning Examination content to determine course and credit equivalencies and acceptable scores, in accordance with the Transfer Credit for Prior Learning Examinations Procedure.

C.    Course and credit equivalencies and acceptable scores will be set forth in the Catalog.

D.    Credit awarded under this Policy will be classified as a General Education Requirement, Program Requirement, or an Elective credit dependent upon the Student’s active Program of Study at the time of evaluation. 

E.    In the event the Program of Study does not require the credit which the student seeks, no credit will be awarded.

F.    A maximum of thirty (30) credits towards a degree or certificate may be earned through Non-Traditional Sources of credit across all categories of Credit for Prior Learning, including Prior Learning Examinations.

G.    The College may award credit under this Policy based on the Student’s score on the Prior Learning Examination as set forth in the Catalog at the time the Official Score Report is received by the College.

H.    Credit for Prior Learning Examinations will follow nationally accepted standards for the notation of such credit on the Student’s transcript.

V.    Exceptions

A.    If a Program of Study requires more than sixty (60) credits, the maximum number of credits towards a degree or certificate, earned through Non-Traditional Sources across all categories of Credit for Prior Learning, including Prior Learning Examinations, may exceed thirty (30) credits, but is limited to half the total credits required for that Program of Study.

B.    Pursuant to the College’s academic regulations concerning transfer credit, no credit will be awarded if equivalent or similar credit has already been awarded through coursework completed at or accepted by the College.

Policy Title:  Transfer Credit for Prior Learning Examinations Policy

Policy Category:  Academic Affairs

Policy Owner:  Vice President for Learning and Provost

Policy Administrator:  Registrar

Contact Information:; 410-777-2834

Approval Date: March 12, 2024

Effective Date:  March 14, 2024

History:  Interim Policy adopted on Oct. 1, 2022

Applies to:  All faculty, students, staff

Related Policies:  N/A

Related Procedures:  Transfer Credit for Prior Learning Examinations Procedure


Relevant Laws                      

  • COMAR 13B.06.01.01, seq.
  • COMAR 13B.06.02.01, seq.
  • Code, Educ., §11-207