Officials with the University of Maine at Presque Isle are pleased to announce a new degree pathway for adult learners that gives them the ability to earn their college degree in just a few years for under $10,000.


The degree is a Competency Based Education Bachelor of Business Administration (CBE BBA) degree, to be offered online beginning in Fall 2017. UMPI is the first public university in New England, and one of a small number across the country, to offer such a CBE degree program.

“There are an estimated 200,000 adults in Maine with some college but no degree. Our new program is specifically designed to meet the needs of this group of Mainers, or any adults across the nation in a similar situation,” UMPI President Ray Rice said. “Participants can complete our CBE BBA at their own pace and they can save money both by getting college credit for their past learning and work experience and by taking advantage of the flat tuition rate we’re offering for in- and out-of-state students. No other bricks and mortar public school in New England is providing a fully-accredited degree pathway like this.”

UMPI’s CBE program aligns very closely with work initiated by the University of Maine System in 2012 to develop and implement a Systemwide plan to enhance baccalaureate degree attainment and completion by Maine’s adult and non-campus based citizens.


Most CBE degree programs are offered by online institutions and, while they vary, they generally have four main characteristics:

  • They apply participants’ prior learning and past work experience as college credit;
  • Instead of courses, they involve a list of competencies that need to be completed;
  • Using a digital platform, they provide learning modules for each competency that allow participants to progress as they demonstrate their mastery of academic content; and
  • They allow students to complete as many competencies as they like during a set time period—buffet style—at a subscription rate.

With UMPI’s CBE BBA degree program, participants will be able to apply past college credit, other learning, and work experience toward their degree. After determining which competencies they still need to complete, an UMPI learning coach will create individual learning plans for students. Students will then be able to pay a flat tuition rate of $2,000 per semester—less than one-half of UMPI’s standard in-state tuition rate and one-third the standard out-of-state rate—and be able to take advantage of as many competency learning modules per term as they’d like.

For more information about UMPI’s new CBE BBA, fill out the inquiry form here or contact Carolyn Dorsey at 207-768-9584 or

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