Thought Leader Interviews: Dr. Wade Dyke
With tuition increases and student debt piling on at a discouraging pace, people from all walks of life are seeking out ways to get an education that won’t break the bank. Thanks to the online learning movement, innovative ways of getting college credit are on the rise, like an exciting new course from Kaplan University.
Documenting Your Experiences for College Credit is a massive open online course (MOOC) offered by Kaplan University that allows people to turn their real-world life and work experiences into college credit that can actually be applied toward a degree.
Dr. Wade Dyke, President of Kaplan University, joined StudentAdvisor in a Thought Leader Interview to explain how the course works and the huge positive impact it has already made in the lives of students.
Essentially, Dr. Dyke explained, the course teaches you how to build a personal portfolio that showcases the learning that you’ve achieved on the job and in your life.
“One way to think about it is if you were building a LinkedIn portfolio,” Dr. Dyke said. “You would be documenting your work experiences, right? This takes that to the next level.”
This learning recognition course asks students to dig even deeper into their work experiences and really think critically about the skills that they have attained through their various daily tasks. Then, they learn how to transfer and apply those skills toward their degree program.
Students are able to save thousands of dollars toward college credit and potentially skip an entire semester, just by recognizing what they know. Self-reflection and awareness are important in any job capacity, but this course actually allows students to save money because of it, which can have a huge impact in the long run.
So what types of students would benefit from taking this course?
All of them, Dr. Dyke says with a laugh, but he’s actually quite serious.
“In the IT fields, we had a software developer who came in and got credit for six courses,” he said, “and many other fields apply. In juvenile justice, for example, in the business arenas like real estate and finance – all those work experiences contain training or contain learning that could be applied toward a college degree.”
Students who come from firefighting, medical, and military backgrounds have also seen great success in the course. In these fields, professionals may not have as much traditional classroom experience and education as others, but their day-in, day-out work experiences encompass a a variety of important skills that can easily be applied toward a degree. Just because these professionals don’t have an associate or bachelor’s degree does not mean they don’t have the corresponding knowledge.
“If you’re looking for a college degree and you want to apply some of your learning from work – which a lot of people have – it’s a great tool to do that,” Dr. Dyke said. “It’s out there for free, and we’ve seen case after case after case of people being able to do this successfully.”
[Get credit for your life experiences – sign up for this course now!]