Transferring to LATI & Credit for Prior Learning

There are two general ways to get academic credit for what you’ve done in the past. These are transferring college credit to LATI and documenting prior learning. Prior learning may be especially beneficial for veterans.

Transferring to LATI

Transfer of Previously Earned College Credits to Lake Area Tech

Any credits being transferred to LATI must meet the following criteria:

  • An official transcript must be submitted from an accredited post-secondary institution. This will be kept in the student's official file at Lake Area Tech.
  • Credits must have a grade of C or above to be considered for transfer. When a course has been repeated for credit, the last grade earned will be evaluated for transfer.
  • Grades for transfer will be recorded on the Lake Area Tech transcript with a TR notation.  Transferred grades are not calculated in LATI’s grade point average.
  • There is no charge to transfer credits for presently enrolled full-time students.
  • Transfer credits are not eligible for financial aid.
  • The minimum unit to be transferred is one-half credit. Courses accepted in transfer from institutions with different credit and/or grading systems than Lake Area Tech's will be converted.
  • There are two general categories of college transfer credits: General Education Credits and Technical Studies Credits.

 

Transfer of General Education College Credits

General Education Credits are especially important for students earning their AAS. They are not directly applicable to the specific program, but are important for general competencies. General education includes topics such as English, math and social sciences. These credits can usually be transferred to a four-year college or university program.

  • No age restrictions are placed on the life of the general education credit to be transferred. The course to be transferred must be applicable to the student's degree program at Lake Area Tech. Credit will not be given for duplication of courses.
  • General education credits fulfilling the Associate of Applied Science degree requirements must be approved by the Registrar.
    • LATI generally follows to the policies of the South Dakota Board of Regents in awarding general education credit.
    • The content of the course transferred for credit must be sufficiently similar to the content of the applicable LATI course.
    • It is always a good idea to save course descriptions and syllabi from previous college courses to show the content of transferred courses. This information is often needed by the registrar and departments to determine an appropriate credit award.

 

Transfer of Technical Studies College Credits

Technical Studies credits apply to program specific courses.
In addition to the preceding criteria, the following policies apply:

  • Technical studies credits fulfilling the Associate of Applied Science degree or diploma requirements must be sufficiently similar to LATI’s curriculum.
  • The decision to accept specific technical credits will usually be made at the program/department level with approval by the Registrar.
  • The time limit for accepting transfer technical credit will be seven (7) years. Credits earned more than seven (7) years ago must be verified and approved at the department level.
  • A minimum of one-third of the technical credits must be from Lake Area Tech in order to be granted a diploma or degree.

 

Process for Transferring Diploma Credits to A.A.S. Degree

Lake Area Tech graduates who have previously received a diploma and desire to receive an A.A.S. degree will be subject to the following conditions:

  • All technical credits must have been earned within the past seven (7) years by the time of completion. Credits older than seven (7) years will be verified at the department level. The verification process may include documentation by a current or previous employer.
  • Any general education credits transferred in must meet the transfer requirements of Lake Area Tech.
  • Technical education courses must meet the requirements of the current program.
  • Transferring credits for enrolled students is subject to current policy.
  • Non-enrolled students will be charged $10.00/course for transferring credits.

 

Credit for Prior Learning (CPL)

In addition to transferring college credit, students can seek LATI credit for prior leaning (CPL). CPL is granted in cases where a student may have work experience or other experiences where general education or technical credit may be granted. The Registrar usually determines CPL awards for general education credit, while the applicable department does so for technical studies credit. The methods for obtaining credit for prior learning include national standardized tests, professional certifications, experience-based credit (to include military experience), and certain high school course work and challenge tests.

National Standardized Tests

Students can earn prior credit for earning passing scores on the CLEP, DSST and AP tests. If a CLEP, DSST or AP test is applicable to an LATI course, LATI generally adheres to the South Dakota Board of Regents policy in granting credit.

College-Level Examination Program (CLEP)

  • Information on taking CLEP tests is available here.
  • Student must provide proof of a minimum score on a CLEP test in the form of an official CLEP score report, CLEP transcript or ACE transcript.
    • To have a CLEP score sent to LATI, designate LATI to receive the scores when registering for a CLEP test. LATI’s school code is 2842.
    • To order a CLEP transcript, see this link.
    • To order an ACE transcript, click here.
  • Click here for LATI’s CLEP credit award policy.

 

DANTES Subject Standardized Test (DSST)

  • Information on taking DSST tests is available here.
  • Student must provide proof of a minimum score on a DSST test in the form of an official DSST score report, DSST transcript or ACE transcript.
    • To have a DSST score sent to LATI, have a DSST transcript sent to Admissions Office, Lake Area Technical Institute, PO Box 730, 1201 Arrow Ave., Watertown, SD 57201. See this link to order a DSST transcript.
    • For transcripts for DSST tests (this can include CLEP tests too) taken while in the military, see this link.
    • To order an ACE transcript, click here.
  • Click here for LATI’s DSST credit award policy.

 

Advanced Placement (AP)

  • Information for AP courses and tests is usually obtained in high school. For more information, click here.
  • Student must provide proof of a minimum score on an AP test in the form of an official AP score report or ACE transcript.
    • To have an AP score sent to LATI, designate LATI to receive the scores when registering for an AP test. LATI’s school code is 0717.
    • To send AP scores after taking the test, see this link.
    • To order an ACE transcript, see this link.
    • Click here for LATI’s AP credit award policy.

 

Professional Certifications

LATI awards CPL for professional certifications on a case-by-case basis. The registrar and department will determine specific credit awards. LATI awards CPL if:

  • There is adequate proof of the certification and its currency.
  • The certification certifies competencies sufficiently applicable to the appropriate LATI course(s).
  • The actual CPL award may be less than the credit of the applicable LATI courses(s). In some cases a student may receive partial CPL for a LATI course based on a certification, but have to take the entire LATI course. In these cases, the student will not have to pay tuition for the credits awarded. For example, if an LATI course is worth 6 credits, an applicable certification may receive 2 credits of CPL. In such a case, a student would only pay tuition for 4 credits, but have to take the entire course.
  • Click here to see health care field prior learning situations, which LATI will consider for CPL.

Contact the registrar to discuss your specific situation.

 

Experience Based Credit

LATI awards CPL for experience on a case-by-case basis. The registrar and department will determine specific credit awards. CPL will be awarded if:

  • There is adequate proof of applicable experience (often, this a letter from a previous employer).
  • The experience is sufficiently applicable to the appropriate LATI course(s).
  • The actual credit award may be less than the credit of the applicable LATI courses(s). In some cases a student may receive partial CPL toward a LATI course based on experience, but have to take the entire LATI course. In these cases, the student will not have to pay tuition for the credits awarded. For example, if an LATI course is worth 3 credits, applicable experience may receive 2 credits of CPL. In such a case, a student would only pay tuition for 1 credit, but have to take the entire course.
  • Click here to see health care field prior learning situations, which LATI will consider for CPL.

Contact the registrar to discuss your specific situation.

 

Military Experience

Verifiable and applicable military experience may be eligible for CPL at LATI. CPL will be awarded if:

  • There is adequate proof of applicable experience.
    • To document military experience, veterans should use the Joint Services Transcript (JST) and/or the ACE military guide. To set up a JST account see the JST registration page. This will allow the student to send an official transcript to LATI at no cost. This is ideal for most military training courses and military specialties.
    • Alternatively, the ACE military guide, available at this link, provides credit recommendations and transcripts for courses as well as military occupations. The ACE military guide has search tools for both military training and military occupations. To obtain an ACE transcript, the student needs to establish an account at this link. ACE charges a fee for this service. If you have taken prior learning from other source (e.g. CLEP, DSST) this option may save money.
    • Whether using a JST or ACE transcript, veterans should familiarize themselves with ACE’s credit recommendations.
  • The military experience is sufficiently applicable to the appropriate LATI course(s).
  • The actual credit award may be less than the credit of the applicable LATI courses(s). In some cases a student may receive partial CPL toward a LATI course based on military experience, but have to take the entire LATI course. In these cases, the student will not have to pay tuition for the credits awarded. For example, if an LATI course is worth 6 credits, applicable military experience may receive 2 credits of CPL. In such a case, a student would only pay tuition for 4 credits, but have to take the entire course.

Contact the registrar to discuss your specific situation.

 

Transfer Credit from High School (High School Articulation).

CPL “tech Prep credit” may be granted to students who graduated from high schools with articulation agreements with LATI. This option and the conditions that apply are explained in the registration information that each student receives prior to attending LATI. This type of CPL is specific to the student’s academic program. Click here to see a list of academic programs. From this page visit the web page for your program. On the left side most program pages, click on “articulation.” For most academic programs, this will reveal a menu with a link to “high school articulation.” Two of the more common high school CPL situations are listed below:

Computer Literacy - LATI will award one to two CPL credits for students who have taken high school computer classes and graduated from high school within the last three years under the following conditions:

  • The student must have taken the mandatory one semester computer course required for graduation plus at least one more semester computer course (excluding keyboarding).
  • The student must have a grade of "B" or better in these classes.

 

Accounting - LATI will award two CPL credits for ACCT 210 for students who have taken two or more semesters of high school accounting or bookkeeping and graduated from high school within the last three years. The student must have earned a minimum grade of a "B" or better in these courses. ACCT 210 is a three credit course. Students who receive this CPL award will be registered for that ACCT 210, but pay for only one credit. Alternatively the student may elect to test out, as described below.

 

LATI Challenge Tests (“Testing Out”)

 

CSC 100 or 102 Computer Concepts. Computer test-out Policy Several LATI programs require a one or three credit computer course. An opportunity to test out of these classes is available. The instructor will explain this option the first day of class. A fee of $20 per credit is required for the test.

ACCT 210 Principles of Accounting 1. Students who have had two or more semesters of Accounting on the high school level and who received a grade of B or better may attempt the Accounting I challenge test. The test consists of an accounting simulation and takes approximately five hours (this may be completed over several days). A minimum score of 80% is needed to pass. If successful, the student receives CPL for ACCT 210 (3 credits). There is a fee of $20.00 per credit (i.e. $60.00 for ACCT 210) to take the test and have the course added to the student’s transcript.

MA 115 Medical Terminology. Students who have taken medical terminology in high school may test out of this 1.5 credit class. Check with the Registrarís Office for details. A fee of $20 per credit is required for this test (i.e. $30.00 for MA115) Fee may be waived in whole or in part if the course is part of a tech prep articulation agreement applicable to the studentís program.

Math 100. The test must be done during the first week of the semester. There is a fee of $20.00 per credit (i.e. $60.00 for MATH 100) to take the test and have the course added to the student’s transcript.