An important part of Undergraduate Education’s strategic mission is to improve the success of all undergraduates and we collaborate with colleges, campuses, and administrative units University-wide on projects to help improve processes, address timely issues, and optimize the academic experience. The following impact reports reflect the critical projects UE is working on with partners across Penn State.
Prior Learning Assessment
Penn State has a rich history of awarding college credit for learning experiences that occur outside of the classroom. Defined as prior learning assessment (PLA), this learning often comes from life, work, and military experiences. Undergraduate Education’s Prior Learning Assessment office has been leading efforts since 2014 to help students earn college credit for knowledge, training, and professional skills they already possess.
A data analysis helped inform ongoing work to assess the process for students to make course substitutions across the General Education Knowledge Domains. Based on this work, recommendations were made to streamline the substituton process and update the policy. Then new policy will go into effect for students matriculating in summer 2023.
Penn State Learning Guided Study Groups
A quantitative and qualitative analysis of Penn State Learning’s guided study group (GSG) programs were conducted to assess their effectiveness in increasing student success within individual courses. The report provides an overview and key findings from the analysis, which finds that participating in the GSG programs is associated with overall improved letter grades and increases student success in the courses.