Credit Transfer and Recognition of Prior Learning Policy

Fact box

  • Policy owner: Chair, Academic Administration Committee
  • Policy category: Academic: Academic Administration
  • Policy status: Approved
  • Approval body: Academic Board
  • Endorsement body: Academic Administration Committee
  • Last amended: 23rd June 2017

Purpose

This policy outlines how advanced standing, credit transfer from prior formal academic accomplishments, and recognition of prior learning (RPL) from informal learning are recognised.

Scope

VET and HE awards

Policy

Alphacrucis College (AC) is committed to maintaining the integrity of its academic courses in alignment with the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) and grants advanced standing, credit transfer or RPL accordingly. Advanced standing/credit transfer is to be awarded on the basis of completed formal academic studies that an authorised institution has assessed and certified (i.e. units of learning that are “quality assured” against known standards). RPL is based on “prior experiential learning”, i.e. “a process through which learning is achieved outside formal education or training".

Limits on advanced standing (for HE students only): The College limits the award of advanced standing/credit transfer to a two thirds maximum. That is students must complete no less than one third of a total program as College AC-enrolled students.

Definitions:

  1. Advanced Standing – recognition of achieving a portion of the required knowledge, skills and understanding of subjects in a course of study, expressed as an equivalent subject/unit or number of credit points toward that course.
  2. Specified Academic Credit: may be given for a specified subject/unit or subjects/units where learning has been gained through previous study that has already been assessed by an educational establishment (either vocational or higher education level). The learning is regarded as having satisfied both the objectives and the assessment requirements of the subject (at HE level) or elements, performance criteria, performance evidence and knowledge evidence (at VET level).
  3. Unspecified Academic Credit (HE only): may be given through recognising a number of credit points rather than a specific subject where prior learning is regarded to be consistent with the broad outcomes of the course being undertaken. Such prior learning may be granted to students who have completed relevant studies (either vocational or higher education level.) This may sometimes be referred to as 'block credit'.
  4. Credit without Advanced Standing (HE only): Students have completed similar subject material in another award, and thus are exempted from the subject, but receive no credit point recognition.
  5. Recognition of Prior Learning – acknowledgement of learning outside of formal education and training, including knowledge, skills, competencies, and attributes which may have been learned through: work experience, community involvement, or through general life experience. The focus is on assessing applicant students to determine if they have met the learning outcomes or standards or competencies prescribed for a program. RPL is available for students from all awards to access in compliance with the Australian Quality Training Framework.

For VET qualifications RPL can be applied:

  • for the partial credit or
  • complete fulfilment of a qualification.

For HE qualifications RPL can be applied:

  • either to gain entry to a degree (excluding Higher Degree Research), or
  • for partial credit towards a qualification (two thirds maximum).

Compulsory Studies: It is the responsibility of Program Directors to identify and publish those subjects provided in an approved course which do not attract credit transfer.

Concurrent Studies: Successful completion of approved concurrent (cross-institutional) studies will be applied to the relevant AC course.

Currency of Prior Learning:

Unless the Dean of Faculty or Program Director otherwise approves on the basis of evidence of subsequent development and life or work experience in the discipline, only evidence of formal and informal learning completed in the previous 10 years will be considered.

Special Internal AC Articulation Arrangements for Graduates of Relevant Vocational Education Programs:

i. Diplomates of AC’s accredited Advanced Diploma programs may receive up to 120 credit points towards an undergraduate degree.

ii. Diplomates of AC’s accredited Diploma programs may receive up to 80 credit points towards an undergraduate degree.

iii. Advanced standing credits are determined on the basis of equivalence of subject content and learning outcomes matching the description and standards of the unit for which credit is sought. Actual credit awarded may be less than the theoretical maximum established in these policies and procedures.

Determining RPL:

In determining the applicability of RPL, the College will assess that students have met the learning outcomes or standards or competencies prescribed for a unit/subject/course. This may require that assessment include (but not necessarily be limited to) methods such as:

  1. relevant professional training;
  2. project work;
  3. practice related learning;
  4. independent research;
  5. a piece of scholarship;
  6. a portfolio with examples of previous work;
  7. letters from employers or community leaders explaining applicant experience, responsibilities, skills and capacities;
  8. work-based assessment;
  9. examinations;
  10. interviews;
  11. demonstrations; or
  12. a combination of some or all of these methods.

Responsible for implementation

Program Directors; Admission Officers, Registrar

Key stakeholders

Students
Program Directors
Registry

Related documents

Application for RPL and Credit Transfer Form - https://www.ac.edu.au/forms/#application-for-credit-variation-withdrawal-transfer

Procedures

Credit Transfer and Recognition of Prior Learning

Application Procedure for Advanced Standing/Credit Transfer/RPL:

  • A formal application must be submitted using the online "Application for RPL and Credit Transfer Form" plus the provision of supporting certified documentation.
  • All applications must be submitted during the application process, and not postmatriculation.
  • Students must substantiate completion of studies cognate to the subject(s)/unit(s) for which exemption is sought.
  • Where studies were taken at an international institution, NOOSR checks are to be performed to correlate the award against the AQF.

Decision Making: Decisions on the applications of advanced standing, credit transfer and RPL are to be made by the Program Director in consultation with the Registrar. All decisions should be informed by careful professional judgment that is transparent and fair.

Academic appellate process may apply should an unsuccessful application be disputed.