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Recognition of prior learning (RPL)

RPL is a process used by awarding bodies, adult learning centers colleges and universities all around the world to measure and evaluate the learners achievements and skills. Under this process the learner needs to show how much knowledge, understanding or skills they already have, they do not need to repeat the course or complete extra assessment activity.

If there is evidence that the learner has previously shown the knowledge, skills or understanding required by a qualification, this may be used towards achieving that qualification. The evidence must be:

  • Valid;
  • current;
  • Reliable;
  • authentic and sufficient.

Recognition of Prior Learning Process

RPL recognition process steps

Step 1: Awareness, information and guidance

Before enrolling the learner, the assessor can discuss with them the option of using RPL to claim units/courses for some of their past learning or experience. If the learner are interested in this, they will be briefed with the following:

  • The process of claiming a unit/course using RPL.
  • The support and guidance that is available.
  • How long the process will take, how to appeal and any costs included.

The evidence provided by the learner for RPL must be achieved before the start of their course of study.

Step 2: Pre assessment, gathering evidence and providing information

During this step learners will be in contact with the qualification assessment team to gather and provide the information needed. A tracking document or assessment plan can be created for learners to help them gather the evidence.

The evidence gathered needs to meet the standards of the unit/course, or part of a unit, that the evidence is being used for. Evidence from a learner’s past experience could include:

  • Home or family life.
  • Non-certificated education or learning.
  • Paid work.
  • Community or voluntary work.

Step 3: Assessing and documenting evidence

A learner’s past achievement that would show evidence of current knowledge, understanding and skills varies between industries. It depends on the range of their experience, technological changes and the nature of the outcome claimed.

Assessment as part of RPL is a structured process for gathering and reviewing evidence and making judgments about a learner’s past learning and experience in relation to unit standards. The Assessor may look at:

  • Work experience records, validated by managers.
  • Past portfolios of evidence or essays made by the learner.
  • Reports validated as being the learner’s own unaided work.
  • Expert witness testimonies.
  • Professional discussions.
  • New assignment briefs or tasks that have been created to fill any gaps in the learner’s work.

Evidence collected through the RPL process needs to be assessed and verified through the same quality assurance procedures that your centre uses for any other internal assessment methods.

Assessment records used against prior learning should be kept and be available for verification if requested.

Step 4: Outcomes of the RPL process

Once assessors checked a learner’s evidence and made an assessment decision, it is important that feedback is given to the learner including the assessment decision and what options are available to the learner if you management decided not to award the unit/course or qualification.

If the learner wants to make a complaint they can do so using our Next Gates Education Website

If the learner can show that they have met all the learning outcomes and assessment criteria using RPL they will be able to claim for the unit/course or qualification.

If we identify that all unit requirements have not been met, we will:

  • ask you to provide more evidence, or
  • ask the learner to complete the standard assessment requirements if they want to achieve the qualification.

Step 5: Claiming certificates

You can claim certificates once the quality assurance processes have been successfully completed using the standard procedures.

Step 6: Appeals

If a learner wants to appeal against a decision made about their assessment they first need to follow the centre’s policy and procedures.

Next Gates assessment and procedures

It is our role to assess the learners’ knowledge and achievements following the steps mentioned above. However, we send our assessment with the decision to the awarding bodies, so they validate the results and give us the final decision. We offer learners the possibility to study individual courses/units into our platform, which are part of qualifications. When a learner completed successfully any of these courses and decided to pursue a qualification later, we can assess the achievement quickly as the learner evidence are already in place.

The assessment of RPL is concerned with our learners (students enrolled with our courses/qualifications). Learners might want to continue education with other colleges/universities. These organizations might have a different recognition process and students should be in contact with them for prior recognition. We offer learners all necessary documents or evidence related to their performance and achievement alongside with their certificates/diplomas.

If you want to apply for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for a course offered by Next Gates Education, you can send us a request on this email:

About NG Education

Next Gates Education offers a professional qualifications and courses in which most of them are accredited by UK’s top Awarding Bodies and internationally recognized.

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