During an Adult and Professional Studies program, all students must create a portfolio that summarizes the learning acquired from academic, personal, and professional experiences. Students receive materials on developing the portfolio before classes begin. Program representatives and assessment counselors assist students in completing this portion of the program.
The portfolio serves several purposes:
- Provides a means by which students may petition for life-learning credit applicable to their degree.
- Assesses extracollegiate learning.
- Determines the progress of the student's career and personal development.
- Provides a vehicle to explore growth patterns and formulate future academic and career plans using this knowledge.
The portfolio consists of five sections:
- Section 1: Autobiography
- Section 2: Transcripts and A.C.E./military documents
- Section 3: Résumé
- Section 4: Professional/technical experience and continuing education
- Section 5: Experiential learning essays
Since it is an integral part of the coursework, all students must complete the portfolio. Students must write at least two experiential-learning essays. This is mandatory regardless of the number of transcript credits accumulated prior to the program. Essays are used to determine the significance of the learning experiences. Documentation is required to verify the experiences described in the essays.
Letter grades are not assigned to prior learning credit earned through the portfolio. They appear on the APU transcript as "CR" for credit received. Students may earn a maximum of 30 units through portfolio assessment. Credit awards may differ among individuals.
All Adult and Professional Studies programs deliver practical, relevant skills. Each student participates in a major project throughout the program which applies theory and knowledge to real-world situations.
Students in the leadership program design, conduct, and report on an applied research project that will have some impact on an organization. During the course of completing the project, students learn problem-solving techniques, data analysis, and presentation skills.
The primary instructor and a full-time faculty member evaluate projects. This thoughtful assessment provides the student with helpful feedback and ensures consistent high quality.