The RBA Portfolio: An Overview
Students enrolled in the RBA Degree Program at Marshall University have an opportunity to earn college equivalent credit for selected work and life experiences through the preparation and evaluation of a Portfolio.
A portfolio is not a traditional college paper, nor is it merely a listing of job experiences.
Rather, it is a carefully thought-out and focused work that aims to convince a faculty evaluator that you have gained outside the classroom knowledge, abilities, and skills that are roughly equivalent to those gained in traditional coursework.
This portfolio overview is intended to help you determine whether or not you should consider a portfolio, and to give you an idea of the sorts of supporting activities and documents you will need.
If you decide to pursue the portfolio option, more extensive written suggestions and help are available from the RBA office.
The portfolio is a multi-part document composed of three sections:
- Section One consists of your resume and a listing of the courses for which you are seeking equivalency credit.
- Section Two contains a written narrative which outlines your experiences and justifies your claim that you have gained college-equivalent learning.
- Section Three consists of verifying documents which support your claim.
Once you have assembled your portfolio according to the guidelines provided by the RBA office, it is sent to the appropriate academic department for evaluation.
An evaluator, usually a faculty member, will review your portfolio and will make a recommendation as to the amount and kind of credit to be awarded towards your degree.
Before you begin to assemble a portfolio, please consult with your RBA Advisor.
Consulting with your RBA Advisor will help you determine the credits your need to complete the RBA Degree. Your RBA Advisor will also work with you to ensure that all other possible sources of credits you may have accumulated over time – transfer credits from other institutions, professional and military training credits, and credits from examinations – will be evaluated for possible inclusion in your degree program.
The Three Steps of RBA Portfolio Development
STEP ONE: Research and Document Collection
Please list the answers to these questions:
- “What knowledge, skills, and abilities do I have that will translate into college credit through the development of a portfolio,
- Why will my knowledge, skills and abilities fit into the courses I need?”
As most people gain their college-level learning at work, you should begin by listing all the jobs you have held and the knowledge, skills, and abilities you needed to perform those jobs. Serious volunteer activities or hobbies can also be the source of credit.
Next, please begin to assemble documentation that supports and verifies the knowledge, skills and abilities that you have listed above. The documentation that you will assemble will be crucial in determining whether these knowledge and skills will translate into college credit.
Supporting documents can include, but are not limited to:
- Job descriptions and evaluations;
- Letters from employers, supervisors, and teachers;
- Licenses and training certificates;
- Examples of your work.
Remember that the purpose of these documents is to support your claim to college-level learning!
STEP TWO: The Written Narrative
Once you have completed Step One, please contact the RBA Office and arrange to meet with an RBA Advisor. The RBA Advisor will review your life and work experiences listed in Step One and help you determine which ones might translate into college credit toward your degree.
Once this step in the process is completed, the RBA Advisor will work with you to help you produce a resume and a written narrative. The resume and written narrative will outline the sources of the knowledge you have acquired through your previous work and life experiences.
There is no required length for the narrative. The purpose of the narrative is to show the evaluator that you have acquired college-level learning outside of the classroom.
Please note that the RBA office will provide whatever level of help and support you feel you need to write this narrative.
STEP THREE: Portfolio Assembly
The final step is the assembly of all written work and documentation according to RBA Portfolio Guidelines.
Before you begin to plan a portfolio, please be aware:
- Portfolio credit can not be used to meet the residency requirement, but may be used to meet general education and upper division requirements.
- Portfolio credit can not duplicate credit already on your transcript,
- Portfolio credit can not be transferred to or from another Regents institution.
- For any evaluation period in which a portfolio is sent out, there is an initial $300.00 evaluation fee, regardless of credits requested or received. There is a ten dollar ($10) fee for each credit hour awarded. All fees must be paid before the credits are added to the permanent record.
- Portfolios are sent out for evaluation during two periods per school year: from the first class day in August though the last class day in September; and from the first class day in January to the last class day in February.
Is developing a Portfolio right for you? To find out, please pick up a copy of the RBA Portfolio Development Guide, in Laidley Hall 126, or download a copy by clicking below and saving the file to your computer:
Need Help or have questions? Please email us or call our office.
Andrew Gooding, Director
RBA Bachelor’s Program
One John Marshall Drive
Huntington , WV 25755-2050