RPL – Recognised Prior Learning

What is RPL?

Participants undertaking training in Nationally Recognised courses (eg Certificate III, Cert IV, Diploma) through Aspire are able to apply for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).

The assessment for RPL is based on the recognition that people develop skills in many different ways throughout their lifetime, through:

  • Work place skills developed in previous and current employment
  • Life experiences outside of work or school
  • Previous education or training courses.

RPL takes into account a person’s skills and experiences, no matter where these were learnt, to enable them to gain formal recognition of these skills in a course of study.

How can prior learning be recognised?

Every training course contains a set of learning criteria that must be demonstrated before a participant will be deemed competent by the assessor. In broad terms, the process of RPL involves matching what participants already know and can do with the:

  • Elements
  • Performance Criteria
  • List of Critical Aspects of Evidence
  • List of Required Knowledge of the Unit of Competency.

In this way, RPL enables participants to invest time developing skills and knowledge in new areas, rather than re-learning what they already know and can demonstrate.

Who can apply

All training participants can apply for RPL if they think they have prior learning and experiences that can provide evidence to demonstrate they are already competent in the learning outcomes of the training course, or a particular unit of competency.

Benefits of RPL:

  • Conforms to the requirements for equity in adult education programs;
  • Avoids the problem of participants having to unnecessarily repeat learning experiences;
  • Encourages the development of various assessment procedures;
  • Assesses the candidates’ current competence in comparison to the standards of competence required – without first participating in a training component of the course – The RPL process can clarify what relevant skills the participant does and does not possess so that the learning program can be streamlined and tailored accordingly.