Australian Catholic University (ACU) supports an approach which values all learning, however achieved, through an open and transparent approach to assessment. It acknowledges that learning may be achieved through either non-formal or informal pathways, and that provision should exist for recognition of these. Accordingly, this policy for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) provides for:
opportunities for non-formal and informal learning to be recognised for purposes of entry to a course or obtaining credit towards an undergraduate or postgraduate qualification;
recognition of diverse and inclusive pathways to lifelong learning;
assuring the quality, integrity and standing of ACU qualifications.
In this policy and procedures the following meanings apply:
RPL: Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is an assessment process for recognising relevant non-formal and informal learning by collecting evidence and making judgments on the extent to which an individual has achieved the required learning outcomes, competency outcomes or standards for entry to and/or partial or total completion of a qualification.
Assessment: A process that identifies the purpose and the evidence required, provides a range of ways for students to demonstrate that they have achieved the required outcomes, makes judgments based on the evidence provided and records and reports the assessment findings.
Formal Learning: The attainment of formal qualifications or part thereof for study undertaken at anaccredited education provider within the Australian Qualifications Framework.
Non-Formal learning: Relevant skills, knowledge or competencies that have been acquired through non-accredited study with a provider other than a university or accredited education provider. It includes education or training provided through employer-based programs and professional bodies.
Informal Learning: Learning acquired in an informal context, such as through work and/or life experiences.
Learning or competency outcomes: A learning or competency outcome that a learner should know and/or be able to do as a result of being involved in a learning process. The learning should indicate a conceptual as well as a practical grasp of the knowledge or competency required and be applicable outside the environment in which it was acquired.
5.1 Heads of School, or equivalent, will nominate a member/s of academic staff such as a Course Coordinator, hereafter referred to as the RPL Advisor, to provide applicants with advice on RPL processes and the formulation of their application.
5.2 The specific responsibilities of the RPL Advisor in this regard are to:
assist applicants to understand the RPL assessment process;
assist applicants to reflect on and identify the learning or competency outcomes associated with their experience and identify areas where claims might be formulated;
assist applicants to identify the relevant units/course/qualification most suited to their needs;
following preliminary assessment, provide advice on the learning or competency outcomes against which students will be assessed;
advise on gathering valid, current, sufficient and reliable evidence, the authentication required and the format of applications;
provide information about the administrative procedures for receiving RPL applications, administering assessment, fees, recording RPL assessment outcomes and advising students regarding such decisions and appeal processes.
5.3 An applicant may be provided with an initial consultation of up to one hour to assist in the preparation of an application. If the consultation needs to be extended, this will attract an hourly charge.
Unless the Head of School, or equivalent, otherwise approves on the basis of evidence of subsequent development and life or work experience in the discipline, credit granted will lapse if the program is not completed within ten years from the date of completion of the study or learning on the basis of which credit is granted.