VALOR Act Academic Credit Evaluation Policy
The VALOR Act (Senate Bill 2254) requires that as a public institution of education in the Commonwealth, North Shore Community College develops a set of policies and procedures that govern the evaluation and award of academic credit for a student's military experience, training, coursework, and occupation/s. The Act also mandates that each institution designate a single point of contact for student veterans who will also have responsibility for decisions regarding the award of such academic credit.
As a Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOC) member, North Shore Community College proudly supports a comprehensive Academic Credit Evaluation Policy for our military students. NSCC recognizes the value of the many foundational training and leadership learning experiences provided by the United States Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard. Veteran and active-duty students often receive academic credit for these experiences, which can shorten the time it takes to complete a degree and prepare them for a smooth military-to-workforce transition.
1. NSCC's single point of contact for student veterans who has responsibility for decisions regarding the award of academic credit for a student's military experience, training, coursework, and occupation/s will be housed in the Center for Alternative Studies & Educational Testing. This individual's contact information will be made readily available to students.
2. Eligible students will receive accurate and complete academic counseling from said individual in regards to this policy. This policy will be made readily available to students.
3. In order to be considered for credit evaluation, a student's military experience, training, coursework, and/or occupation/s must be listed on official military documents, i.e. the Joint Services Transcript. Other official military documents may be used as a basis for evaluation in accordance with the Center for Alternative Studies & Educational Testing's approved credit evaluation procedures.
4. NSCC will consider prior learning attained in non-credit or experiential military settings. Credit will be awarded for prior learning that is evaluated as college-level learning as it applies to a student's chosen program of study or as an elective. Evaluation for such credit may take place by standardized examination, challenge examination, portfolio review, evaluation by certification or license, and the ACE Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experience in the Armed Forces.
5. Non-college learning through formal military training, and/or a military occupational rating or specialty that has been evaluated for college credit by the American Council on Education (ACE) will be accepted by NSCC as an elective or direct course credit based on ACE Recommendations. If the course to which the non-college learning is equivalent to general education, elective, or NSCC program requirements, the credit will meet that requirement and count towards graduation/certification.
6. NSCC will maintain a list of military equivalencies for direct course credit on the Center for Alternative Studies & Educational Testing webpages. This list will include numbers of credits that may be awarded and course equivalents and will be made readily available to students.
7. Based on ACE recommendations and where no military equivalencies for direct NSCC course credit exist, the Center for Alternative Studies & Educational Testing may propose a Special Topics course in adherence to NSCC's Curriculum Committee policies and procedures. If approved, credit may be applied to a student's chosen program of study or awarded as elective.
8. College level knowledge demonstrated by scores on standardized examinations may be applied to NSCC's programs as transfer credit. NSCC accepts scores from the following national examination programs: CLEP, DSST, AP, DLPT, SOLT, BYU, and NYU.
9. Duplicated military experience, training, and coursework will not be posted. The determination of duplication will be based on the ACE guide number for the course.