Credit through Portfolio

WRIT 298/698 Course Overview


WRIT 298/698: Prior Learning Portfolio is a 1-credit course similar to an independent study in which students work one-on-one with the instructor to create a lengthy and detailed portfolio that articulates students' learning of particular course or department learning outcomes. Undergraduate students should register for WRIT 298 and graduate students for WRIT 698.

Catalog Description

Analysis and evaluation of prior learning experiences in the context of academic requirements and goals. Development of an individualized portfolio and plan for the attainment of educational and career goals. Designed primarily for students with significant life and work experience. Prerequisite: Approval of instructor. Pass-Fail only.

Course Objectives

Students will:

  • demonstrate knowledge of the portfolio development process through preparation of an online or physical portfolio which, when evaluated, will provide you with your current college educational standing
  • identify all prior learning experiences, reviewing, analyzing, and evaluating your prior learning experiences in the context of academic requirements and goals
  • write a resume
  • write an autobiography describing a chronological history of life-long learning
  • formulate a request for a specific amount of credit for your prior learning
  • write learning outcomes essays derived from your experiences, which will relate to UW-Superior courses/credits
  • gather pertinent documentation necessary to support your request of credit for prior learning


Students may be able to earn credit for some courses by preparing a portfolio documenting prior college-level learning.

Credit by portfolio development is suited for students who have extensive work or life experiences, professional certifications, and military or other specialized training.


To earn credit through portfolio development, follow these steps:

1. Contact the Credit for Prior Learning Advisor
The CPL Advisor will discuss your prior experiences and learning, and your educational goals. Several conversations are necessary between the student, the CPL Advisor, and the cooperating academic departments to determine whether a portfolio is feasible.

2. Register for online Credit Through Portfolio class (suggested)
After these initial conversations, if you wish to pursue WRIT 298 or WRIT 698, you can register for the course with the instructor's permission. The course isn't required but many students find it helps them organize and refine their portfolio. The course is delivered online and requires independence and good time management.

3. Meet the course expectations
During the semester, the course instructor will set deadlines for each section of the portfolio; s/he will offer you feedback on your writing, helping you to craft your portfolio for your audience(s).

4. Meet deadlines
Near the end of the semester, you will deliver your completed portfolio (sometimes more than one copy) to the cooperating departments, or in the case of an online portfolio, share a functioning link with all reviewers. You, as the student seeking credit, are responsible for communicating with both the CPL Advisor and the cooperating department(s) throughout the process.

5. Petition for Credit
Should the cooperating department grant the credit(s) sought, you will complete this form, Petition for Credit for Experiential and Non-Collegiate Sponsored Learning. You are responsible for getting the appropriate signatures and delivering the petition(s) to the Registrar's Office.

Fees and costs

There are four costs associated with Credit for Prior Learning:

  • Prior Learning Portfolio Development (WRIT 298/WRIT 698) is a 1-credit online course; therefore, students pay the current Distance Learning Center tuition and fee rate for a UWS course. Note: WRIT 298/WRIT 698 is not a requirement for submitting a portfolio, but most students find the course very helpful.
  • Costs to create a physical portfolio (and often more than one copy), if relevant. A binder, paper, printing, ink, postage and other materials may be needed.
  • A one-time administrative fee of $100 for the portfolio's review by the cooperating academic department.
  • Tuition fees are determined by the number of credits you are seeking:
1-3 credits sought $75
4-6 credits sought $150
7-9 credits sought $225
10-12 credits sought $300

Each additional 1-3 credits sought are assessed at an additional $75.

Compare the difference

A traditional 3-credit undergraduate course costs $305/credit (as of Spring 2013); 3 credits granted through this process cost $75 plus the $100 administrative fee. See UW-Superior's Tuition and Fee Schedules for the graduate tuition rate.