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EIU Major In Organizational and Professional Development

You may be closer than you think. The Organizational and Professional Development program recognizes that students develop competencies in a variety of ways and in a variety of environments. As part of that dedication, our program offers a unique opportunity for earning college credit for knowledge learned outside of the traditional classroom setting. Let's be clear, though. Credit is granted for college level knowledge, knowledge that you've never been given credit for before.

So what is college level knowledge? How do you know that the knowledge you have would be considered college level? Well, the truth is you don't know for sure. Only the evaluators can truly access what you know, via the portfolio, and compare it to college coursework offered here at EIU. While some students find this to be a very time consuming process, many feel it is well worth the time and effort. This is sometimes a faster way to earn college credits that count towards your degree. EIU will help you facilitate the process of submitting a portfolio for evaluation.

Awarding Prior Learning Credits

Students can earn credits for prior learning two ways.  First is through training experiences that have been previously evaluated by the American Council on Education (ACE) (e.g. Military Training). Transcripts for these experiences can be sent directly to the OPD coordinator.

Students may also earn credit through the development of an occupational portfolio.

There are several steps to the portfolio process. Here is a brief glimpse:

  1. Once admitted to the OPD Program, let your advisor know you're interested in the portfolio process. Your advisor will put you in touch with the Portfolio Administrator, who will answer any questions you might have about the process.
  2. Enroll in the portfolio class, BGS 3001/OPD 3000.
  3. After completion of the class, and in consultation with the Portfolio Administrator, you can submit your portfolio(s) for evaluation to the School of Continuing Education.
  4. The School of Continuing Education will send your portfolio(s) out for evaluation.

Portfolio Fees

There are expenses involved in offering a quality experiential learning portfolio. These expenses include copying, postage, and evaluation fees as well as the time commitment on the part of the School of Continuing Education.

Students choosing to develop an experiential learning portfolio with credit awarded through BGS 3001/OPD 3000 will be charged the following fees:

  • An initial portfolio fee, whose dollar amount is equivalent to one semester hour of current tuition, includes the evaluation of the first portfolio, based on the semester in which the portfolio is submitted, as communicated on EIU's Financial Aid website.
  • If a student submits more than one portfolio, each subsequent portfolio will also carry a fee whose dollar amount is equivalent to one-third of one current semester hour of tuition.

All of the above steps will be outlined for you once you're admitted to the OPD Degree Program.

Please continue learning about the portfolio process by choosing options from the site menu. If you have any questions, please contact Kim Redfern at or 217-581-5618.

Related Pages

Contact Information

Luke Steinke PhD,
OPD Program Coordinator

School of Technology
4020 Klehm Hall
600 Lincoln Ave.
Charleston, IL 61920

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