Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) &/or Recognition of Current Competencies (RCC) All participants who wish to undertake any National Course with Scorpion Training Solutions, have the right at any time during the enrolment process, to ask for RPL/RCC. The Assessor will discuss the process and indicate on the evidence produced, if you may have some competencies that will allow you to gain RPL. Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL/RCC) is a process whereby competency acquired through education, training, work experience, previous or current work and/or life experience may be formally recognized. RPL/RCC is based on the understanding that people learn in different ways. It acknowledges that people learn through work experience, life skills and experience, as well as by education and training, be this informal or formal. RPL/RCC takes into account a person’s acquired knowledge and skills plus experiences to provide credit towards formal qualification. Recognition of Current Competencies (RCC) allows for acknowledgement and documentation of an individual’s current knowledge and skills without limiting the means by which the knowledge and skills may have been gained. These processes involve identification and formal recognition of competence no matter where it has been acquired. Competence is usually acquired in one or more of the following broad areas: 1.
Education and Training School/College/University qualifications, Industry in-house courses (Includes formal and structured training)
Work Experience, Previous or Current Work
On-the-job experience, including paid/unpaid work; full-time, part-time and casual work
Unpaid or volunteer work, community group involvement, family and leisure activities, cultural activity or experience
RPL/RCC’s are processes that enable people to be able to demonstrate their achievement of competencies by means that may not have been traditionally recognized. This enables recognition and acknowledgement of an individual’s current competencies without limiting the means by which these competencies may have been acquired. The RCC process provides for recognition of a person’s current competencies (acquired knowledge and/or skills) without limiting when, where or how their current knowledge and skills were acquired. Formal recognition of these current competencies is given when assessment indicates that a person has the required knowledge or can demonstrate the required skill.
Recognition of current competencies may be represented in a number of ways; both formal and informal. These include: Formal recognition: qualifications industry skill classification membership of professional bodies license to carry out specific work Informal recognition: -
personal… increased self-esteem, personal- or job-satisfaction, self-confidence external… praise, respect, commendation
RPL/RCC’s are based on a number of Key Principles. 1. Competence RPL/RCC shall focus on competencies acquired by way of formal and informal training rather than when, where or how the competencies were acquired. 2. Recognition RPL/RCC is fundamentally important to Competency-based Training and Assessment. It is essential that training providers recognize and give credit for the individual’s current competencies. 3. Access RPL/RCC must be available to all persons undertaking training in relevant areas 4. Reliability RPL/RCC must be applied objectively. Assessment of current competencies must be valid, reliable and equitable. 5. Support RPL/RCC must involve the provision of adequate support mechanisms, including the provision of information and counseling to participating individuals.
Planning Stages for RPL and RCC 1. Information stage Prospective applicants for RPL/RCC should be made aware that the mechanism exists. Sufficient information should be provided to allow people to make an informed decision on whether to apply for RPL/RCC or not. 2. Initial Support/Counseling stage Applicants should be assisted to recognize areas potentially suited to RPL/RCC and given all necessary information to facilitate the process. It is essential that training providers clearly define the guidelines and parameters under which assessment of current competencies will be carried out.
At the end of this stage, applicants should be able to start preparing their portfolios and applications. They should be preparing contact details for referees and listing details of relevant experience. This background information and “evidence” can then be compared with the learning outcomes and assessment criteria required to progress towards, or obtain, a qualification. Any background information evidence that an RPL/RCC applicant can provide to support their claim for qualification should be submitted as part of their application. Types of evidence will be discussed later. 3. Portfolio Preparation/Application stage Applicants must document their claim for competency in sufficient detail to allow for initial assessment. At this point, the training provider or assessor will determine whether the applicant’s claim will proceed. This will require the applicant to assemble and present evidence and submit a formal application. Applicants will usually claim exemption from specific modules of a course, based on learning outcomes and assessment criteria relevant to particular modules. When completing applications, applicants must ensure that: the learning outcomes being claimed are clearly specified the evidence supplied relates directly to specified learning outcomes and assessment criteria applications are unambiguous, clear and concise 4. Assessment stage At this stage, the assessor will conduct a systematic review of evidence to determine whether the applicant has achieved specific learning outcomes and can demonstrate competency in a particular area. If there is not enough evidence to allow the assessor to make an objective judgement at this point, the applicant may be asked to: provide more evidence complete assignments for submission demonstrate certain skills in the workplace or under simulated workplace conditions. review the application/portfolio with the assessor to clarify the evidence presented. This review may necessitate further competency-based assessment. 5. Secondary Support/Counseling stage At this point, assessor and applicant should review the results of the assessment stage and, if necessary, set further training and development goals. If an appeal process exists, the applicant should be informed of the appeal procedure. The assessor should provide feedback regarding the assessment process and assist the applicant to set further learning targets if required 6. Certification Stage If the applicant has successfully demonstrated competency in the areas applied for, this should be appropriately recognized by way of a credential, records, certificate, etc. It is essential that records of assessment be kept by the assessing organization and by applicants for future reference
Evidence In order to determine whether an applicant can demonstrate competence in a nominated area, there must be a systematic examination of evidence available that shows relevant knowledge and/or skills. Evidence may be described as information about an individual’s competencies. It may refer directly to knowledge, practical skills, experience and abilities that can be objectively assessed. Evidence presented for assessment must relate directly to learning outcomes and assessment criteria for the modules or course for which recognition is sought. In some cases, one area of evidence will be relevant to a number of learning outcomes or assessment criteria and may be used to support a claim for several outcomes or criteria. Evidence may be direct, supplementary or indirect. 1. Direct Direct evidence encompasses demonstrable skills, completed projects, quantifiable tasks or tests that can be demonstrated, shown, examined or objectively assessed. It shows the participant’s own work and may include examination results, practical tests or demonstration of specific skills. 2. Supplementary Supplementary evidence is information about the applicant derived from other sources. It may include: references from employers or others who have worked with the applicant (in paid or unpaid work) evidence relating to any course which has provided the applicant with relevant skills and knowledge (including short courses) certified copies of awards, certificates, results or statements of attendance statutory declarations 3. Indirect Indirect evidence encompasses a much broader range of material. It may include role-plays or simulations, membership of occupational associations, letters of reference or validation, certificates, awards and subjective material. It is generally used when it is not practicable for applicants to be assessed during actual performance of tasks. In determining whether evidence is appropriate and whether enough evidence has been obtained to provide a credential, a number of factors must be considered. 1.
The level of risk associated with performance of tasks encompassed by the module or course under consideration. Where high-risk tasks are performed, the assessment criteria should be subject to close scrutiny and careful consideration. Level of risk also increases with the number of learning outcomes/modules/courses claimed. Limited claims represent a lesser degree of risk because further training and further assessment will usually take place before issuing the eventual credential.
The complexity of the skills involved in performance of tasks encompassed by the module or course under consideration.
As the level of risk or the complexity of tasks under assessment increases, the intensity of the assessment process must also increase. This may mean that more assessors will be involved in the assessment; or that more direct evidence (and more detailed indirect and supplementary evidence) will be required to allow assessment of competence. When examining and assessing evidence, a number of criteria, must be considered. Evidence must be: Authentic. Assessors must verify that any direct evidence provided is genuine and of a suitable standard Relevant, Reliable and Sufficient. The evidence must relate directly to the assessment, must be capable of objective assessment and must be sufficiently detailed to allow assessment Up-to-date/Current. Evidence should be reviewed to ensure that it relates to current competencies. Competencies demonstrated in the past need to be assessed to ensure that they are still applicable to present assessment requirements Valid. The evidence presented must cover all knowledge and skills required to satisfy the relevant learning outcomes and assessment criteria. Related to Industry standards. Evidence must relate directly to the industry standards from which the learning outcomes and assessment criteria are derived.