Inside Higher Ed published a great piece on Prior Learning Assessment awhile ago. PLA has been gaining in popularity at colleges and universities. PLA is a great option for adult students who are looking to start a college degree. Unlike CLEP (College-Level Examination Program), which also provides students college credit for life experience, you are not sitting for a subject based test. PLA requires the student to research and write a paper on the subject incorporating their knowledge on the topic.
The article provides great information on what PLA involves and includes YouTube videos of adult students sharing their experiences and insights on their own PLA projects. http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2012/08/02/look-students-who-have-earned-credit-prior-learning