"Having an opportunity to obtain credits by writing a portfolio of my life experience and creating my own degree plan were key for me."

-UWW student

credit for experience

because what you've done in life matters

You've seen a lot. You know a lot.  You've done a lot. You may not have a college degree (yet), but we bet you could teach a course on life. At UMass UWW, we respect the prior learning and experience you bring into our program. We believe the experiences you have had, and the knowledge, skills and wisdom you have gained over the years matter and are worthy of up to 100 academic credits. And earning credit this way saves you time and money. 

what counts as prior learning and experience

how this works

Of the 100 credits you have the opportunity to bring in for your prior learning and earn for your experience, up to 75 are transfer credits and up to 30 are UMass Amherst residency credits.  75 + 30 = (about) 100

prior coursework
UMass Amherst has a generous transfer credit policy. Learn more about what prior coursework is likely to transfer.

professional trainings and certifications
In your first semester as a UWW student your advisor will ask you to dig up and put together documentation of any professional trainings and certifications you have that are directly related to what you're studying. The best part is the credits you are able to earn this way help fulfill your degree concentration. Even better? There is no per-credit cost for the transfer credits you earn this way which can mean huge savings for you- savings of time and money.

credit evaluations & exams
There are a number of organizations that offer credit by examination or conduct official evaluations of professional trainings. Learn more.

credit for basic training
All U.S. veterans and active duty service members receive 3-4 credits for completing basic training. Learn more

prior learning portfolio
In your second semester as a UWW student you will write a portfolio of essays about what you have learned through your life and work experiences. This portfolio is then evaluated for academic credit.  You will be eligible to receive up to 30 credits towards your degree, with the average student earning 15 credits. And the credits you earn this way are counted as residency credits (UMass Amherst credits) and not transfer credits, making it easier for you to fulfill the university's degree requirements. Even better, the cost of these credits are about 1/5 the cost of course credits. 

get credit where credit is due

We're steadfast in our commitment to helping you graduate as quickly and affordably as possible with a great education from a world class university.