Recognition of prior learning (course credit)

If a student has experience or studies relevant to their chosen course they can apply to have these skills recognised through Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) towards their formal qualification.

If successful, this may mean that they receive course credit towards their formal qualification and/or are exempted from having to complete certain units or modules in their study program.

A student’s skills and knowledge may have been gained through work, formal study, volunteering, informal or formal training, social activities, self-taught or general life experiences.

When a student applies for RPL the student is asked to provide evidence of their skills and studies. This evidence can include certification, academic transcripts, subject descriptions, testimonials, references from employers and work samples. This evidence of their knowledge and skills is then measured against the equivalent module(s) or unit(s) in the relevant course.

If they are successful, they will be assessed as having already completed those modules or units in their course. This will enable them to complete their studies in less time and at less cost. An assessment fee applies for this process.

If a student applies before enrolment, the student should send their documentation with the international application form.

If they are applying after enrolment, the student should make sure that they bring their information and speak to their program coordinator.

Assessment of RPL is normally undertaken at the beginning of the course and students must apply for RPL within two weeks of their course starting.

TAFE South Australia’s practice of Recognition of Prior Learning is consistent with the Course credit definition and conditions of the Educational Services for Overseas Students (ESOS) Act 2000 and the National Code of Practice 2007 *. If course credits or exemptions are granted through RPL this may reduce the duration of the course. If this occurs before a student visa is granted TAFE South Australia will advise the student of the course duration, as per the reduction granted by RPL.

If course credits or exemptions are granted after a student visa is granted, the student must be notified of any course duration changes and the change in length of the course will be recorded in the Provider Registration and International Student Management System (PRISMS) as per the ESOS Act 2000. Students who have received course credits or exemptions must continue to keep their enrolment load at a level to allow them to complete their course within the expected duration.

*Course credit: Exemption from enrolment in a particular part of the course as a result of previous study, experience or recognition of a competency currently held. Includes academic credit and recognition of prior learning” (National Code of Practice for Registration Authorities and Providers of Education and Training to Overseas Students 2007).