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Academic Credit for Prior Learning (ACPL)

Academic Credit for Prior Learning (ACPL)

ACPL can help students complete their training and degree programs sooner by evaluating an individual's existing knowledge and competencies for college credit, including knowldege that may have been acquired through documented military training.

Methods for awarding Academic Credit for Prior Learning include:

 

Credit by Standardized Testing or Evaluation link image

Credit by Standardized Testing or Evaluation

BTC awards college credit for completion of certain standardized examinations.

Credit by Examination link image

Credit by Examination (Challenge Exam)

The course challenge is a process permitting students to receive a grade in a course in which the student demonstrates the knowledge and expertise of that course through completion of an examination.

Portfolio link image

assessment of prior experiential learning: Portfolio

Credit for prior experiential learning is a process permitting students to receive credit for particular program course(s) for which the student demonstrates they have knowledge and expertise through submittal of a portfolio.

Extra Institutional Learning link image

Extra Institutional Learning

BTC accepts formal training with consistent learning outcomes which are generally aquired through industry and military training.

For more information contact Heidi Ypma, Dean for General Education and Instructional Support at hypma@btc.edu

Credit by Standardized Testing or Evaluation

BTC awards college credit for completion of certain standardized examinations, listed below. Provide documentation of these exams, through a high school transcript or other means to the Admissions and Student Resource Center.

If you have taken a similar standardized examination not listed below, please contact the Admissions and Student Resource Center.

Advanced Placement (AP)


Students who have completed college-level AP courses in high school and have taken the exams administered by the College Board may receive college credit in selected courses at BTC. A note reflecting credit granted will appear on the student transcript. AP scores may also be used to waive portions of the Accuplacer exam.

To request credit based on AP scores, students must submit either official AP test scores from the College Board or official high school transcripts containing AP scores to the Admissions and Resource Center.. Credit will be awarded according to the Advanced Placement Credit Chart below which outlines the minimum required scores and corresponding courses.

Advanced Placement Credit Chart

AP Exam Min Score BTC Course Credits

Biology 3 BIOL& 160 5
Calculus AB 3 MATH& 151 5
Calculus BC 3 MATH& 151, MATH& 152 5
Calculus BC 5 MATH& 151,MATH& 152 10
Chemistry 3 CHEM& 121, CHEM& 161 5
Chemistry 5 CHEM& 121, CHEM& 161, CHEM& 162 10
Economics (Microeconomics) 3 ECON& 201 5
Economics (Macroeconomics) 3 ECON& 202 5
English: Language & Comp 3 Elective 5
English: Language & Comp 4 ENGL& 101 5
English: Literature & Comp 3 Elective - Humanities Distribution 5
Physics 1 3 Elective - Science Distribution 5
Physics 1 4 PHYS& 114 5
Physics C (Mechanics) 3 Elective - Science Distribution 5
Physics C (Mechanics) 4 PHYS& 221 5
Spanish: Language & Culture 3 SPAN& 121 5
Spanish: Language & Culture 4 SPAN& 121, SPAN& 122 5
Spanish: Language & Culture 5 SPAN& 121, SPAN& 122 10
Spanish: Literature & Culture 3 SPAN& 121 5
Spanish: Literature & Culture 4 SPAN& 121, SPAN& 122 5
Spanish: Literature & Culture 5 SPAN& 121, SPAN& 122 10
Psychology 3 Elective - Social Science 5
Psychology 4 PSYC& 100 5
Statistics 3 MATH& 146 5
US Government & Politics 3 Elective - Social Science 5
US Government & Politics 4 POLS& 202 5
US History 3 HIST& 146, HIST& 147, HIST& 148 5
US History 5 HIST& 146, HIST& 147, HIST& 148 10

International Baccalaureate (IB)


Students who have completed IB courses in high school may receive college credit for selected courses at BTC. A note reflecting credit granted will appear on the student transcript upon program completion. IB may also be used to waive portions of the Accuplacer exam.

To request credit based on IB scores, students must submit official scores from the IB to the Admissions and Student Resource Center.

Exam Min Score BTC COURSE Notes

Soc/Cult Anthro 5 ANTH 900 Social Science Elective ANTH& 206
Environmental Sci 5 BIOL 900 Natural Science Elective
Biology 5 BIOL& 160 General Biology with Lab
Bus & Management 5 BUS 900 Business Elective
Chemistry 5 CHEM& 121 or CHEM& 161 or 162 Introduction to Chemistry
Economics 5 ECON 201 Social Science Elective
English A 4 ENGL& 101 English Composition I No credit for English B
Geography 5 GEOG 900 Social Science Elective GEOG& 100
any History 5 HIST& 146 Social Science Elective
Mathematics 5 MATH& 141 Precalculus I Both MATH& 141/142
Mathematics 5 MATH& 142 Precalculus II Both MATH& 141/142
Music 5 MUSC 900 Humanities Elective MUSC& 105
Philosophy 5 PHIL 900 Humanities Elective
Physics 5 PHYS& 221 Natural Science Elective
Psychology 4 PSYC& 100 General Psychology

CLEP Testing


Students who have taken CLEP exams may receive credit in selected courses at BTC. To request credit based on CLEP scores students must submit official CLEP scores to the Admissions and Student Resource Center. A note reflecting credit granted will appear on the student transcript upon program completion.

See the following list for policies on granting placement of credit for CLEP exams. Credit will not be granted for scores below the ACE recommended score.

EXAM Min Score BTC Course

Financial Accounting 50 ACCT 141 Financial Accounting I
Biology 50 BIOL& 160 General Biology with Lab
Introductory Business Law 50 BUS 900 Business Elective
Principles of Management 50 BUS 900 Business Elective
Chemistry 50 CHEM& 121
or CHEM& 161
or 162
Introduction to Chemistry
or General Chemistry I w/ Lab
Princ. of Macro/Micro Econ 50 Econ& 201 Social Science Elective
Intro to Ed Psych 50 EDUC 900 PTE Elective
English Composition 50 ENGL& 101 English Composition I
English Composition 50 ENGL& 102 English Composition II
College Mathematics 50 MATH& 107 Math in Society
College Algebra 50 MATH& 141 Precalculus I
Precalculus or 50 MATH& 142 Precalculus II
Calculus 50 MATH& 151 Calculus I
Introductory Psychology 50 PSYC& 100 General Psychology
Human Growth & Development 50 PSYC& 200 Lifespan Psychology
Introductory Sociology 50 SOC& 101 Introduction to Sociology
History of the United States I: Early Colonization to 1877 50 HIST& 147 United States History
History of the United States II: 1865 to the Present 50 HIST 900 Social Science Elective
Social Sciences and History 50 HIST 900 Social Science Elective
Western Civilization I: Ancient Near East to 1648 50 HIST 900 Social Science Elective
Western Civilization II: 1648 to the Present 50 HIST 900 Social Science Elective
Analyzing and Interpreting Literature 50 ENGL 900 Humanities Elective
English Literature 50 ENGL 900 Humanities Elective
Humanities 50 HUM 900 Humanities Elective
Natural Sciences 50 BIOL 900 Natural Science Elective

DSST (formerly DANTES)


The nationally recognized Dantes Subject Standardized Tests (DSST; formerly DANTES) provides college credits for learning acquired outside the traditional classroom through a suite of 38 exams in college subject areas such as Social Sciences, Math, Applied Technology, Business, Physical Sciences and Humanities. The American Council on Education’s College Credit Recommendation Service (ACE CREDIT) has evaluated and recommended college credit for all 38 DSST exams.

To request credit based on DSST scores, students must submit official scores and a completed Evaluation Request form to the Admissions Office. Credit awarded will be indicated in the student database and will appear on the graduate’s record of cumulative waiver/transfer earned upon program completion.

Exam Min Score BTC Course

Principles of Financial Accounting 47 ACCT 141 Financial Accounting I
General Anthropology 48/400* ANTH 900 Social Science Elective
Business Mathematics 48/400* BUS 150 Mathematics for Business
Business Law II 44 BUS 900 Business Elective
Human Resource Management 46 BUS 900 Business Elective
Foundations of Education 46 EDUC 900 PTE Elective
Human/Cultural Geography 48 GEOG 900 Social Science Elective
Physical Geology 46 GEOL 900 Natural Science Elective
Fundamentals of College Algebra 400 MATH& 141 Precalculus I
Principles of Statistics 48/400* MATH& 146 Introduction to Statistics
Business Ethics and Society 400 MGMT 900 Business Elective
Ethics in America 46/400 PHIL 900 Humanities Elective
Principles of Physical Science I 47 PHYS 900 Natural Science Elective
Astronomy 48  ASTR 900 Natural Science Elective
Lifespan Development Psychology 46 PSYC& 200 Lifespan Psychology

*In 2008, ACE revised 14 exams and changed to a score range of 200-500 for these exams, with 400 being the cut score for passing. Thus, in the chart you will see scores for both unrevised and revised exams. For example, “48/400” indicates scores before and after 2008.

Credit by Examination (Course Challenge)

The course challenge is a process permitting students to receive credit in courses in which the student demonstrates the knowledge and expertise of that course. Not all courses have a challenge procedure. Contact the Academic Credit for Prior Learning (ACPL) Coordinator to discuss the process for challenging a specific course. Course challenges require a per credit fee to be paid to the cashier prior to completing the challenge. To pass the course a minimum (B) grade is required.

  • The course must be offered in the current college catalog.
  • Permission by the course instructor must be granted to the student to take the challenge.
  • Credit for a course challenge cannot duplicate credit granted by transfer or previously graded course work.
  • The student must submit a Credit by Examination form to the instructor for approval.
  • The student must earn a B or higher on the exam to be awarded a letter grade on their transcript.
  • Credits are not eligible for financial aid and do not count toward full or part-time enrollment.
  • Students cannot repeat a course challenge.

Process:

  1. Meet with the ACPL Coordinator to learn about policies and procedures required for Credit by Examination and to determine if you are eligible.
  2. If eligible, the ACPL Coordinator and appropriate instructor will sign and complete the Credit by Exam form and submit to Heide Willbrandt, CC 220.
  3. A course section (Item No.) will be created. You will be notified once available.
  4. Take signed Credit by Examination form to the registration office and register for the course.
  5. Submit the signed form to the cashier and pay ($75.00 per credit) for the course. Bring receipt to the instructor or ACPL Coordinator.
  6. Complete the exam. If successful, your Instructor will grade the course, with a letter grade, at the end of the quarter.

Assessment of Prior Experiential Learning (Portfolio):

Credit for Prior Experiential Learning allows students to receive credit for program course requirements for which the student demonstrates knowledge and expertise that meets the outcomes of the course(s). Credit for prior experiences can be shown through various means of assessment; however, these experiences must be equivalent to learning gained through formal collegiate instruction. This experience may include industry certifications, work experiences, and similar out-of-classroom learning. The college may recommend online instruction in portfolio development.

  • Only certain courses/programs are eligible.
  • The course(s) must be offered in the current college catalog.
  • Credits earned through Prior Experiential Learning can compose no more than 25% of the credits used to complete a degree or certificate.
  • Credits do not count towards residence requirements.
  • Credits are not eligible for financial aid and do not count toward full or part-time enrollment.
  • Credits are not eligbile for payment through Running Start.

Process:

  1. Meet with the Academic Credit for Prior Learning (ACPL) Coordinator to learn about policies and procedures.
  2. Meet with an instructor to determine course eligibility. If eligible, the instructor will provide information needed to complete portfolio.
  3. The instructor will complete and sign the Prior Experiential Learning form and submit to Heide Willbrandt, CC 220.
  4. The course section(s) will be created. You will be notified once available.
  5. Take signed form to the registration office and register for the course(s).
  6. Submit the signed form to the cashier and pay ( $75 per credit) for the course(s).
  7. Submit the receipt to the ACPL Coordinator who will notify the instructor that you are ready to complete the portfolio.
  8. Complete the portfolio and submit the required elements to the instructor.
  9. If successful, your instructor will enter a grade of CR (credit) at the end of the quarter.

Extra Institutional Learning

BTC accepts certain credentials from institutions other than regionally accredited colleges. Students should provide documentation to the ACPL Coordinator for evaluation.

Program faculty and ACPL Coordinator may award credit for additional credentials as appropriate.

Military Credits - American Council on Education (ACE)


Credit for military training will be awarded from a student’s official Joint Services Transcript (JST), or from a transcript from the Community College of the Air Force or any other college/university attended, based on recommendations from the American Council on Education (ACE) guide for prior military training that is applicable to a student’s certificate or degree requirements

ACE's Military Guide presents credit recommendations for formal courses and occupations offered by all branches of the military. All recommendations are based on ACE reviews conducted by college and university faculty members who are actively teaching in the areas they review. ACE has reviewed and provided academic credit recommendations for more than 35,000 courses, examinations, and certifications offered by employers, federal agencies, professional associations, apprenticeship programs, online education providers, and other organizations.

  • Bellingham Technical College enrolled students who are veterans of any branch of the United States armed services must request transfer credit for military training by submitting an Evaluation Request form to the BTC Transcript Evaluator. The student must provide an official Joint Services Transcript (JST), from the Community College of the Air Force transcript or any other college/university attended
  • Upon receipt of the official transcript the Credit Evaluator will evaluate the transcript for reading, English and mathematics placement and any academic (general education) credits. Credits will be posted to the student record as applicable
  • If technical courses need to be evaluated, the transcript will be forwarded to appropriate program faculty to evaluate in 3 weeks, along with the course description and the accompanying American Council on Education (ACE) course recommendation. The American Council on Education (ACE) standards are used as a guide. ACE translates military courses and occupations into academic credit recommendation, and provides guidelines to interpret and recommend credit for college courses

Exception: Military transfer credit for some programs must meet outside agency criteria prior to BTC acceptance (exp: programs with external accreditation)

  • Any military training or experience that is substantially equivalent to any course or program offered will be accepted as applicable toward the veteran’ program of study
  • ACE military course recommendations are accepted for both the amount of credit suggested, and the level of credit recommended (upper or lower division credit) under the following circumstances:
    • Per the Veteran’s Administration, all veteran student transfer credit must be evaluated within two quarters of program start. After the third quarter, if the student does not submit all transcripts, he/she must be decertified for the use of VA education benefits
    • Veteran students using education benefits are not permitted to opt out of prior credit evaluation

A list of military courses that match the common BTC courses can be viewed below:

Military JST Transcript BTCCourses BTC Course Title

Introduction to Communication CMST& 210 Interpersonal Communication
College Composition Modular ENGL& 101 English Composition I
Computer Applications CAP 101 Introduction to Computers
Computer Software Applications CAP 101 Introduction to Computers
Records Management BUS 123 Records Management

HIV/AIDS, CPR, First Aid, Forklift, Flagging, (C-STOP) and ServSafe certifications


Students requesting credit for HIV/AIDS, CPR, First Aid, Forklift, Flagging, (C-Stop), and ServSafe certifications may have these credits evaluated by the Admissions Office using industry certification or a Washington State Department of Health approved course completion.

An Evaluation Request form should accompany the evidence of industry certification document. Students with equivalent certification do not have to register or pay course tuition to receive waiver. A waiver of coursework will be indicated in the student database and will appear on the graduate’s record of cumulative waiver/transfer earned upon program completion.

Software Certifications


The BCIS Program accepts industry-certification exams for the courses listed below. Students provide documentation of the certification and complete the Extra-Institutional Learning Evaluation Request Form, and the corresponding course is recorded on the transcript as CR.

Course

Credits

Exam

Minimum Score


CAP138 Word

5

MOS Word and
MOS Word Expert

700
700

CAP142 Excel

5

MOS Excel and
MOS Excel Expert

700
700

CAP146 Access

5

MOS Access

700

CAP114 Outlook

2

MOS Outlook

700

CAP148 PowerPoint

3

MOS PowerPoint

700

CAP101 Introduction to Computers

5

All three IC3 Exams
Computing Fundamentals
Living Online
Key Applications

 

650
620
720