Call for Proposals

This Year's Theme: The Art & Science (and Business) of PLA

The National Institute on the Assessment of Adult Learning, which will be held in Atlantic City, NJ, on June 14-16, 2017, invites proposals for short or full presentations, panel discussions or roundtable discussions that present case studies, research, best practices and lessons learned in the assessment of adult and experiential learning. Our hope is that this year’s National Institute presentations will spur discussion and the exchange of ideas, both during the event and after it.

This year’s theme, The Art & Science (and Business) of PLA, is meant to get us thinking about the competing goals that are part of PLA and serving adult learners. Understanding how these can be balanced, or synthesized, can help us achieve our goals with adult learners:

  • How much is PLA personal, and how much can it be standardized and scaled?
  • Is it possible to be student-centered and still maintain a sustainable business model?
  • What is the ART of PLA, and how can it help us engage colleagues in the conversation?
  • What is the appropriate relationship between higher education, adult learners, and industry and workforce needs? How can we make these relationships work?
  • How can PLA play a stronger role in better harnessing talent at the local level in order to strengthen economies at the regional level? 
  • Can ed tech help us achieve our goals for adult learners and PLA?

Other welcome topics include portfolio assessment, competency-based education, credit-by-examination, online learning and testing, learning outcomes alignment, open educational resources, workforce development, and international perspectives on assessing adult learning. Proposals can be designed for those who are newcomers to PLA or for established practitioners.

Presentations should be designed to stimulate discussion and be interactive, and should not follow a traditional lecture format. Finished presentations will be collected and posted on the National Institute’s website immediately following the conclusion of the event.

Consider also the roundtable/learning exchange format, which is a more informal, intimate conversational format with minimal technological assistance. Ideas in the early stages of development, or practical, how-to topics, are well-suited to this format.

Deadline for Submission for the 2017 National Institute:
February 24, 2017.

All presenters are required to register for the Institute and pay the registration fee.

To submit a proposal, please send:

  • Proposal/presentation title
  • 250-Word Abstract
  • Proposed session type: panel, roundtable, presentation
  • On a separate cover sheet, please provide:
    • Name of presenter(s)
    • Institutional affiliation(s)
    • Email address
    • Phone number

Please send all proposals to

For information, please contact Marc Singer, Vice Provost, Thomas Edison State University, at, or visit the website at

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