Prior Learning Assessment Information (PLA)

At UA Little Rock, we value the life experiences of our students, and are committed to helping working and adult learners achieve their higher education goals. We are proud to offer pathways for certain experiences to be counted toward graduation requirements through Prior Learning Assessment (PLA). PLA is the evaluation and assessment of an individual’s life learning for college credit, certification, or advanced standing toward further education or training.

Prior Learning Assessment Programs and Policies

UA Little Rock recognizes several methods for earning university credit for undergraduate and graduate-level learning, including rigorous high school curricula, professional or military experience, professional licensures and certifications, and work experiences. To receive university credit, these competencies must undergo systematic evaluation against established program or course learning outcomes.* A student may earn a maximum of 50% of program degree requirements through PLA (excluding the General Education Core), however, some academic programs may enforce a lower maximum for PLA credits. The PLA credit awarded for a specific program of study may not be recognized should the student change majors, programs, or transfer to another institution. Portfolio and licensure credit may not be applied to the General Education Core. Finally, PLA credit may not be awarded for senior theses or projects, thesis hours, dissertation hours, field research, or field professional experience hours. To be eligible for PLA, the student must be currently admitted and/or enrolled in the university and good standing. All PLA credits must be awarded before the student’s last semester before graduation. Prior learning credits will be noted on the student’s transcript as having been awarded through PLA. Credit through PLA is not recorded as grades on the student’s transcript and does not affect the student’s GPA.

*Graduate programs will specify if they will accept PLA, what forms of PLA they will accept, and the maximum percentage or number of hours they will accept.

Further restrictions on PLA credit:

  • Credit through PLA cannot replace a failing grade;
  • Credit may only be awarded for courses applicable to the student’s declared degree plan;
  • A student may not receive credit twice for a course that has been awarded through PLA;
  • PLA credits do not count toward the residency requirement for the student’s degree program;
  • PLA credits do not satisfy eligibility requirements for financial aid or loan deferment.

For information on Undergraduate degree programs that consider PLA credit, please contact the following departments:

Bachelor in Applied Science: 501-916-5923

Computer Science and Cybersecurity: 501-916-3130

Construction Management: 501-916-3133

Criminal Justice: 501-916-3195

Information Sciences: 501-916-3951

Word Languages: 501-916-3272

For information on Graduate degree programs that consider PLA credit, please contact the Graduate School at 501-916-3206, or via email at