What is RPL and how does it work?

By Steven Galvin - Last update

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What is RPL and how does it work?

Recognition of Prior Learning is a process that acknowledges and validates an individual’s existing skills, knowledge, and experiences gained through informal or non-formal learning. RPL provides an opportunity for individuals to have their prior learning assessed and formally recognized, potentially leading to the awarding of academic credits, qualifications, or exemptions from certain courses or modules.

Increasingly, the national and international community acknowledge that lifelong learning is key to addressing the multiple social and economic challenges faced by humanity. Recognition of Prior Learning makes visible and gives formal value to learning that has been acquired in a range of contexts, at various stages in a person’s life and is a key enabler of lifelong learning. Valuing and recognising learning can significantly improve an individual’s self-esteem and well-being, opening up new learning opportunities and strengthening employability.

The National RPL in Higher Education Project is a collaboration between the Technological Universities, the Institutes of Technology, and Universities to streamline and strengthen RPL across partner institutions, so that larger numbers of learners, particularly those in the workforce, can benefit from higher education.


Hear from various learners about their journey through higher education and how RPL made it possible.


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Steven Galvin

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