Competency-based degrees emerge as a popular alternative to traditional degrees awarded on the basis of completing a certain number of credit hours. Competency-based degrees are self-paced, reward prior experience and measure learning through demonstrated proficiency, making them very attractive to students seeking a degree from a well-recognized institution at a fraction of the cost of an equivalent in-person degree — and with less time spent out of the labor market.
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College for America, University of Wisconsin, and Western Governors University (WGU) use technology to scale competency-based education to more students. College for America students, for instance, can earn an associate’s degree in as little as 100 days for $2,500 or a bachelor’s degree in just two years for $10,000.