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Join Keynoters Goldie Blumenstyck (Chronicle of Higher Education) and Phil Hill and Michael Feldstein (MindWires Consulting)

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22st Annual OLC International Conference
November 16-18, 2016 | Orlando, Florida | Walt Disney World Swan/Dolphin Resort

OLC Innovate 2016 - Innovations in Blended and Online Learning
April 20-22, 2016 | New Orleans, LA | Sheraton New Orleans Hotel

Alternative Credit Pathways for Adult Learners

Burck Smith (StraighterLine, USA)
Session Information
October 16, 2015 - 10:45am
Institutional Level: 
Multiple Levels
Audience Level: 
Session Type: 
Vendor Showcase
Europe 7
Session Duration: 
45 Minutes
Concurrent Session 10

This presentation will examine the topic of alternative credit pathways by identifying some of these options and offering strategies that institutions can adopt for implementation. 

Extended Abstract

There has been much industry talk of late on the subject of alternative credit options and their potential value to nontraditional learners--the much talked about MOOC is just one example. Adults often have relevant life experience that can, and probably should, count for some college credit. They may have gained competency in subject areas without ever stepping foot inside of a classroom. Examples include professional and military experience; credit-by-examination; prior learning assessment (PLA) portfolios; and ACE credits. StraighterLine is an example of a low risk, low cost option that can be a good solution for adult learners who need flexibility, and perhaps a bit of orientation to online learning.

Lead Presenter

Burck Smith is CEO and founder of StraighterLine (www.straighterline.com) -- a pioneer in using alternative credit pathways to make college more affordable. He was also the co-founder of SMARTHINKING, the largest online tutoring provider for schools and colleges. He has written three book chapters on education policy for the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). Further, he has worked as an independent consultant and journalist whose clients included the Gates Foundation, Microsoft, Teaching Matters Inc., Converge Magazine, Wired Magazine, the National School Boards Association and more. Burck holds a Master's in Public Policy from Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government and a Bachelor’s from Williams College.