The University of Wisconsin System is a national leader in competency-based education. Competency-based education (CBE) awards college credit based on competency—the knowledge, skills and abilities students can demonstrate—not classroom time. The UW System’s competency-based educational programs are designed to serve the hundreds of thousands of Wisconsin residents with some college credits but no degree through convenient delivery models.

  • The UW Flexible Option: The University of Wisconsin Flexible Option provides a personalized, convenient, and affordable way for adults and other nontraditional students to earn a University of Wisconsin degree or certificate while balancing work, family, and other commitments.
  • Lumina Grant on the UW Flexible Option: Through a Lumina Foundation grant, the UW System chronicled the development of the UW Flexible Option and conducted research to identify alternative student success metrics appropriate for returning adult students and competency-based education.
  • College Credit for Prior Learning: PLA is the evaluation of college-level learning outcomes that an individual attained outside of the university classroom.

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