educationRecognition of Prior Learning

Recognition of Prior Learning

WIT operates a system of Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) to enable and encourage people to enter or re-enter formal education leading to qualifications. RPL is the term used to describe the system for giving formal recognition to a range of relevant learning that you may have gained prior to entry onto a particular course. RPL can be used by applicants to help:

  • Gain Admission to a course of study by helping candidates to demonstrate that they have met the Entry Requirements;
  • Gaining Exemption(s) from a module or modules within a programme of study where students can formally demonstrate that they have already met the learning outcomes for the module(s) concerned.

 

Prior learning may be the outcome of formal, non-formal or informal learning or a combination of all of these. Formal learning is gained through completing courses/modules in further/higher education or certified courses. Non-formal or informal learning may be attained through work, voluntary activities or private study but for which no certification may have been obtained.

It is important to remember that any RPL application must focus on learning attained and not simply, for example, on time spent in a particular job. RPL is not simply a general statement of previous learning – it requires applicants to map their prior learning to learning outcomes of the relevant WIT module and/or programme.

All RPL decisions are validated by the academic Department expert in the relevant area, in conjunction with the Head of Department and other subject specialists if required.

RPL for Exemptions

Students may be able to gain exemptions from certain modules on a programme where they can formally demonstrate that they have already met all of the learning outcomes of a complete module(s).

Cost: please note that there is a cost (typically 50% of the module fee) involved in processing RPL applications – students should contact the relevant administrator below for further details on the costs involved and when payments need to be made.

Award Year: students are asked to note that at WIT a simple ‘exemption’ cannot be granted in an award year (unless the student is happy to accept an ‘unclassified award’ which most are not). There is a requirement that a gradable piece of work – such as a portfolio of prior learning attained for example – be produced by the student and graded by the college. That grade will then go towards calculating the student’s overall result. Contact the relevant Department as below for further advice in this area.

How to Apply: Students are advised to have an initial discussion on the possibility of RPL for Exemptions with their Course Leader or Head of Department. To apply for an exemption from a module(s) on a programme of study you must complete one of the following forms:

RP1 Module Exemption Form
If your application for module exemption is based on prior certified learning then you must complete form RPL1. If your application is based on a combination of certified and experiential learning, you must also complete form RP2.

RP2 Portfolio of Learning
If your application for module exemption is based on prior experiential learning only, then you must complete form RPL2.

RP3S –Supplementary Form for Advanced Entry
Advanced Entry means to apply for exemptions from all of the modules on an entire year(s) of a programme – for example and application to go directly into the second or third year of a programme. If your application for module exemption is for advanced entry to a course you a must complete this supplementary RPL form. It asks you to describe informal ‘experiential’ learning you have gained through work/life experience or a combination of informal and formal learning (including incomplete programmes). 

Contacts: Please return completed forms to the relevant administrator in the School of Lifelong Learning and Education

For undergraduate part-time courses please return completed applications to:
3rd Level Administrator
School of Lifelong Learning and Education
WIT College Street Campus
email:   [email protected]
phone:  051 302764

For postgraduate education courses please return completed applications to:
Postgraduate Admissions Administrator
School of Lifelong Learning and Education
WIT College Street Campus
[email protected]
051 302225

For Literacy Development Centre courses please return completed applications to:
Literacy Development Centre
WIT College Street Campus
051 302872

Closing dates for Applications:
Semester 1:  Friday 23rd September 2016
Semester 2:  Friday 27th January 2017

RPL for Admissions

Applicants who don’t already meet the academic entry requirements for a WIT course may be able to use RPL to support their application and gain a place on a course.  Entry requirements refer to the level of learning and/or aptitude that the college has down that applicants need to have on entering the course in order to be able to complete it successfully.

The requirement for entry into the first year of an accredited major higher education course at WIT is typically a Leaving Certificate or equivalent [a ‘major’ course refers to a full Higher Certificate or Degree course for example]. Students over 23 years of age fall into the ‘mature students’ category and may be exempted from this requirement if they can demonstrate that they are suitable candidates for the course of study through WIT’s mature applicant assessment processes.

Many WIT awards, especially those at higher levels on the National Framework, will have a higher level entry requirements. For example applicants for a higher diploma award are typically required to already have a level 8 qualification. Therefore an applicant who has a level 7 qualification and who has further relevant learning may be able to secure a place on the course through RPL.

Applicants who do not currently meet the entry requirements for a course but who are interested in pursuing an application must submit the relevant, completed, RPL for Admissions form as part of their application. Applicants who wish to get academic advice on the possibilities of admission by RPL in their case should do so through the relevant Head of Department / Course Leader. The School of Lifelong Learning and Education administrator, listed below, can put you in touch with relevant academic advisor and supply the relevant forms.

For undergraduate applications:
3rd Level Administrator
School of Lifelong Learning and Education
WIT 
Cork Road 
Waterford

email:   [email protected]
phone:  051 302764

For postgraduate education applications to:
Postgraduate Admissions Administrator
School of Lifelong Learning and Education
WIT College Street Campus
[email protected]
051 302225

For Literacy Development Centre courses please return completed applications to:
Literacy Development Centre
WIT College Street Campus
051 302872