RPL, the NQF, and Articulation

SAQA amends Policy & Criteria on Implementation of RPL

This topic contains 4 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Victoria Siphiwe Mamvura-Gava 5 months, 2 weeks ago.

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  • #70333

    sylvia hammond

    “RPL in South Africa is hampered by a number of barriers relating to the delivery, quality assurance and resourcing of RPL.”(Foreword p3)

    This acknowledgment by SAQA is incredibly important, because the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) constitutes a key instrument of redress, for past exclusion of people from education and training, and achievement of formal recognised qualifications.

    SAQA has amended their document to fall in line with the DHET RPL Coordination Policy.

    SAQA has the statutory responsibility to oversee development and implementation of the NQF – including RPL. The amended SAQA policy includes definitions of informal, non-formal, and formal learning, and distinguishes RPL for access, and RPL for credits or qualification. The achievements are then recorded on the National Learner Records Database.

    The policy sets out the responsibility for the 3 quality councils (QCTO, CHE, and Umalusi) to align with this policy. Then the responsibilities are detailed for: SAQA, the professional bodies, education and training and skills development providers, RPL practitioners, employers, and the responsibilities of the candidates are all set out in detail.

    The policy will come into effect once gazetted – and the copy is attached.

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  • #70416

    Hi Sylvia and all here.

    In accordance with the policy and procedures on subject recognition of prior learning, qualifying for the issuing of a qualification, and recognition of qualifications of South African as well as foreign students, the holder of University qualification certificates must have:

    (i) complied with the admission requirements for the qualification, including the admission requirements of the course/module prescribed for the qualification;
    (ii) bee assessed, and found competent in all the competencies and skills prescribed for the qualification;
    (iii) complete more than 50% of the credits of the prescribed course/modules for the qualification at the University; and
    (iv) completed more than 60% of the credits of the exit or final academic year of the prescribed curriculum for the qualification with the University.

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  • #70428

    Policy : Published by the Council on Higher Education (CHE) in 2016

    Overview of policies
    Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

    ● Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) refers to the principles and processes through which the
    prior knowledge and skills of a person are made visible, mediated and rigorously assessed and
    moderated for the purposes of alternative access and admission, recognition and certification, or
    further learning and development.
    ● RPL may be used to grant access to a qualification programme, or advanced standing/exemption
    from modules or courses constitutive of a particular qualification.
    ● In higher education, exemption from modules or courses does not translate to credits being
    awarded for those modules or courses. No credits should therefore be awarded for the modules or
    courses that a student is exempted from doing on the basis of RPL.
    ● A student who, on the basis of RPL, is granted exemption from doing some modules or courses in
    a qualification programme will complete the qualification with a total number of credits that is less
    than the normally required number of credits for the qualification in question. RPL creates such an
    exception, and the student concerned should not be compelled to do more modules or courses
    to make up for the difference in the total number of credits.
    ● Full qualifications on the Higher Education Qualifications Sub-Framework (HEQSF) cannot be
    awarded solely on the basis of RPL. Similarly, exemption based on RPL should be limited to not
    more than 50% of the modules or courses of the qualification programme in question. This means
    that no student should be exempted from more than 50% of the modules or courses required for
    any particular higher education qualification.
    ● Not more than 10% of a cohort of students in a higher education programme should be admitted
    through an RPL process.
    ● Higher education institutions (HEIs) should ensure that quality assurance processes that address
    the specificities of the RPL process (including applications, assessment, and reporting and
    management systems) are implemented; and that administrative and support systems, both prior
    and subsequent to RPL assessment, are in place.

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  • #70432

    Alan Ralphs

    Hi Victoria Siphiwe. The CHE’s RPL Policy is definitely the reference point for your query although the ‘50% residency Clause’ is often contested by those who argue that it is an unnecessary barrier to the principle of RPL. My view is that there are other (curriculum) principles that underpin this clause and that South Africa is no exception in this regard.

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  • #70457

    Thank you very much Allan, I agree on the “barrier to the principle of RPL.” Something you could note as you document this process.

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