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The RPL process can be used by a wide range of learners including.

  • Adults returning to higher education

  • Employed and unemployed people seeking recognition for skills gained through informal learning

  • People wishing to improve their existing qualifications

  • People wanting to re-train or change careers

  • People who have undertaken non-formal learning or training in the workplace or through community-based learning

  • People who have gained skills and knowledge through volunteering or through activities and projects in the community

There are two main categories of prior learning

  • Accreditation of Prior Certified Learning (APCL)

  • Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL)

Accreditation of Prior Certified Learning (APCL)

APCL is also known as APL (Accreditation of Prior Learning). This accreditation refers to the recognition given to formal learning which has previously been accredited, formally recognised or certified by a recognised educational institution or other higher/further education provider.

Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL)

APEL is the recognition of learning which has not been previously accredited or formally recognised and can also be described as informal or non-formal learning. Non-formal learning takes place alongside the mainstream systems of education and training and includes learning and training activities undertaken in the workplace, the voluntary sector or in communities.

Informal learning is learning which has been gained through life and work experiences, as well as community-based learning or other settings.  APEL is often unintentional learning and may not be recognised by the learner at the time of the experience.

If you can prove that you are already have studied part of your course and/or have relevant experience and learning in that field, you may be entitled to course exemptions or advanced entry (entry to year 2, 3 or 4).

For further information please contact the relevant School Office.

Module Exemption(s)

To apply for an exemption from a module(s) on a programme of study you must complete the following form:

 RP1 Module Exemption Form

If your application for module exemption is based on prior experiential learning or a combination of certified and experiential learning, you must also complete form RP2.

RP2 Portfolio of Learning