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KNEXT Launch Announcement  5/31/11

KNEXT, a New College Credit Advisory Service, Helps Adults Translate On-the-Job, Real -World Learning into College Credit

Can Accelerate and Lower Cost of College Degree Process,
Help Address Nation’s Unemployment and Underemployment Rates

Fort Lauderdale, FL, May 31, 2011 – A new college credit advisory service, called KNEXT, was launched today to help individuals document prior learning from on-the-job training and real-world experience and translate that learning into college credit. Through this process, students reduce the time and money necessary to earn a degree and enhance their long-term career potential.

According to the U.S. Department of Education’s College Completion Tool Kit (March 2011), 50 percent of all new jobs in the next decade will require a postsecondary degree, Yet, more than 97 million Americans between the ages of 25 and 64 do not have a college degree. Providing affordable, flexible education options to experienced members of the workforce with little or no college credits is an important way to address the U.S.’s long-term unemployment and underemployment challenges.

“In today’s job market, lack of a college degree can be the biggest obstacle standing in the way of millions of people being considered for jobs,” says Brian Ouellette, general manager of KNEXT. “However, adult learners often delay or abandon their pursuit of a college degree due to rising costs, conflicting time commitments and other factors. At KNEXT, our goal is to take the vast learning these individuals have achieved and help them convert that learning into college credit, which can thereby reduce the time and money necessary to earn their degrees.”

KNEXT’s innovative Learning Recognition Course has students complete online modules with the unlimited online and offline assistance of KNEXT-trained advisors. Through the process, students review their backgrounds, develop outlines of their experiential learning — including on-the-job experience and training — and create  portfolios that document their learning and make the case for why the learning should be considered for college credit. KNEXT portfolio evaluators ensure students' portfolios adhere to widely applied prior-learning assessment standards and provide credit recommendations based on the students' prior learning.  KNEXT then guides students through the college application process with partner institutions, as well as any other institution that accepts experiential credit by portfolio.

KNEXT estimates that its Learning Recognition Courses could save the average student approximately $10,000 and 29 college credits in his or her pursuit of a four-year degree. KNEXT’s team of advisors can estimate not only how many college credits a student may be able to receive, but also what his or her individual time and money savings may be in the pursuit of a degree.

KNEXT designed its portfolio process to include the high level of academic rigor found at regionally and nationally accredited institutions. It adheres to the Ten Standards for Quality Assurance in Assessing Learning established by the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL). KNEXT will also partner with schools and corporations to help their students and employees translate experiential learning into college credit and earn a degree that will further their careers. This can also enable companies to maximize their tuition assistance investment. KNEXT has the ability to privately label different parts of its coursework and process, allowing companies to deliver KNEXT services as part of their benefits offerings.

 “This is a timely issue in our country—the U.S. Department of Education is calling for the use of prior-learning assessments to give credit for skills learned outside the classroom, as there is a shortage of qualified college-trained workers to meet growing demand,” says Ouellette. “We’re proud to play a part of this change in adult education.”

About KNEXT

KNEXT, an independently run subsidiary of Kaplan Higher Education, is a college credit advisory service that helps individuals translate prior learning into college credit. The company is composed of experienced educators and professionals committed to promoting, growing and furthering education. Offering a variety of online programs, KNEXT seeks to help adult students in their pursuit of postsecondary education. For information about KNEXT, its Learning Recognition Courses, Evaluators, Advisors and more, visit http://www.knext.com

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