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Time-Saving Solutions to Finish Your College Degree

Time-Saving Solutions to Finish Your College Degree

It’s a goal of many recent post-high school students — go to a great university and graduate with a bachelor’s degree in four years. But why is that easier said than done, and what can be done to stay on schedule?
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, fewer than 60 percent of first-time students who sought a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent while enrolled at a four-year institution full time completed the degree at that institution within six years.
Degree completion remains at the forefront of the national agenda as experts predict that, in just 10 years, more than 60 percent of all new jobs will require a college education. Organizations such as the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL) are increasing efforts to raise graduation rates by presenting alternative ways to earn a degree quickly.
“Time was the biggest obstacle to getting my degree,” says 54-year-old Briana Taravella.
As time advances, the likelihood of degree completion becomes even more remote. But with alternative methods, such as Prior Learning Assessment (PLA), offered by some colleges and universities and services such as, completing credits is more convenient for students — especially adult learners.
“I had to work hard every day, but I was able to earn credit that would have taken longer going through classes,” says student Taravella as she references her effort to convert her work experiences to college credit through PLA.
As demonstrated by students like Taravella, PLA saves a lot of time toward degree completion. Hundreds of colleges and universities have used this system to award credit for learning gained outside the classroom — such as work experience, civic activity, corporate training and independent studies. In addition to PLA, here is a list of other ways students are earning college credit while saving time:
* Portfolio-based Assessments
* CLEP Exams
* American Council on Education (ACE) Guides
* Evaluation of Local Training
* Challenge Exams

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