#8 Unbound / Lumerit Scholar/ College Plus
NOVEMBER 2019 BREAKING NEWS: Lumerit / Unbound has just been sold to Pearson. Read the full story here.
What is Lumerit? Lumerit (also called Lumerit Scholar, Unbound, and formerly College Plus) is a degree planning company that helps you line up your CLEP exams and classes to match a degree. For a yearly fee ($7,500) they’ll help you select classes and exams that you can transfer to your college by checking your target college’s transfer policy. They also offer a catalog of ACE-evaluated classes and a catalog of 48 Pearson Education classes you can complete online.
Regionally Transcripted: “Regionally Transcripted” is the term they’ve created to explain their credit laundering process. Make no mistake, only colleges can be Regionally Accredited. “Regionally Transcripted” is their marketing term that explains how courses you complete with them will later appear on the transcript of a Regionally Accredited college, specifically Waldorf University.
Classes: 7 of their courses have been ACE evaluated for college credit, and 48 Pearson Education courses are also ACE evaluated, but when taken through Lumerit and added to a Waldorf University transcript will become “Regionally Transcripted.” One advantage of taking the Pearson courses through Lumerit instead of on your own (which you can do for $300) is the credit laundering. This is an advantage if your target college does not otherwise award college credit for ACE courses.
Cost: Unbound/Lumerit charges $5,400-7,500 per year for consulting / degree planning/enrollment into their courses.
Lumerit’s ACE Evaluated Course List
SOC240: Community Service Learning
BUS201: Introduction to Entrepreneurship
ENG131: Composition and Reading I
ENG131: Composition and Reading II
PHIL113: Comparative Worldviews
PSI131: Earth Science, Earth Science with Lab
COMM396: Leadership and Management Com (not upper level)
COMM394: Leadership Theory and Practice (not upper level)
SOSCI280: Social Justice from a Biblical Perspective
Lumerit’s Pearson / Regionally Transcripted List
American History I
American History II
Anatomy & Physiology
English Composition I
English Composition II
Introduction to Biology
Introduction to Early Childhood Education
Introduction to Economics
Introduction to Literature
Introduction to Psychology
Introduction to Sociology
Human Resource Management
Introduction to Business
Introduction to Business Information Systems
Introduction to Finance
Principles of Management
Principles of Marketing
Criminal Justice Ethics
Introduction to Corrections
Introduction to Criminal Justice
Introduction to Homeland Security
Introduction to Policing
Policing Techniques: Interviewing and
Probation and Parole
Thoughts and Opinions
The Good. Lumerit has found a workaround that other providers have not. The development of “Regionally Transcripted” courses is a new solution to the age-old problem of credit laundering. For this, they should be applauded. I’ve had the pleasure of confirming that a Lumerit course appearing on a Waldorf University transcript is clearly NOT transfer credit – thus “actual” credit laundering occurs.
(note: most transfer credit or credit by exam is identified as such on a college transcript, thus credit laundering done this way never works – I believe they are one of only 4 companies that can successfully launder transfer credit in a way that is not distinguishable from that university’s actual credit.)
The course appears as original credit, which is the most important aspect of successful credit transfer in cases like this. Students should feel confident that their courses will transfer into a college or university that accepts transfer credit. If your teen is going to attend a college that does NOT allow you to use ACE credit for college credit, using Lumerit will work around that obstacle.
The Bad. If a family is using Unbound / Lumerit for Christian courses, you should know that only the 8 ACE courses (see list above) were written by Unbound/ Lumerit. The rest of their catalog is secular. If a family is using Unbound / Lumerit for their degree planning service, this is very expensive consulting. Lumerit’s primary business is professional degree planning. The sticking point for me, is that they don’t teach YOU how to degree plan, they do it FOR you, so you’re essentially hooked into using them for all your kids for each year of college. I believe, that homeschooling parents are completely capable of learning how to degree plan for their own kids. Further, if you’ll learn how to degree plan, you’ll have that skill forever and can use it with all of your kids (and community!) Degree Planning 101
Lumerit is simply acting as the middle man for Pearson courses and charging you a premium. You can cut out the middle man and take Pearson courses directly (brand name Propero) if you’d like to save a little money, but if you do that, you won’t get “Regionally Transcripted” courses, they’ll simply be “ACE” courses. Choose carefully. If you’re attending a college that accepts ACE courses, there is no reason to pay a premium for Propero or Lumerit lower-level credit. If you need graded credit from a regionally accredited university, Lumerit accomplishes that, but at a premium price.