Best RPL Policy and Procedure Design

We love the RPL Policy! The Recognition of Prior Learning policy helps learners understand how to compile and submit a portfolio for assessment.

Design a successful RPL Policy.

The RPL Policy and Procedure for Accreditation

Organizations must submit a Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) policy and procedure as part of their accreditation application.

7Sundays provides unique support services for education and training organisations.

From supplying policies and procedures to all other aspects of skills development.

Why The RPL Policy and Procedure is Significant

RPL assesses skills and knowledge gained through informal learning or work experience.

Applicants compile a portfolio demonstrating competency.

Assessors evaluate portfolios against qualification standards.

If requirements are met, candidates receive credits or qualifications.

rpl policy for accreditation consultation

Why an RPL Policy is Required for Accreditation

Recognition of prior learning is part of the education and training value chain.

How an organisation recognises and credits prior learning can present as a barrier or an opportunity for learners.

The NQF is designed to promote inclusion and access.

Many South Africans were unable to study as a result of political disadvantages.

How to Start the RPL Policy & Procedure

1. RPL Policy & Procedure Reference Points

Education and training policies and procedures should reference existing legislation and policy documents provided by the DoL, SAQA, DHET, CHE and the QCTO and SETAs.

This reference is placed at the top of your policy or at the end.

I often drop a table at the beginning of the policy and also add a listing of all the legislation the QMS refers to in an attachment.

SAQA National Policy for the Implementation of the Recognition of Prior Learning
Legislation & Policy FrameworksSAQA National policy for the Implementation of the Recognition of Prior Learning
NQF Act (Act 58 of 1995)
National Skills Development Strategy
HRD Strategy
Internal DocumentsDocuments (policies and procedures) that the RPL policy is usually linked to.Appeals policy
RPL Application and Self-evaluation Application
The RPL Policy

What the RPL Policy Contains

2. RPL Policy Headings

Give your headings a logical structure and remember the saying, “the devil is in the details!”

Here are key headings to include:

(a) RPL Policy and Procedure Purpose:

Begin by clearly outlining why this policy is necessary.

Provide insight into the objectives and goals it aims to achieve.

For instance, mention its role in promoting fairness, flexibility, and efficiency in the recognition of prior learning.

(b) Guiding Principles for the RPL Policy and Procedure:

Establish the foundational principles that underpin the RPL policy.

These principles should align with educational standards, equity, transparency, and quality assurance.

Incorporating principles such as inclusivity and accessibility ensures a comprehensive approach.

(c) RPL Processes and Activities:

Be specific about the processes and activities covered by the RPL procedure.

Provide a detailed overview of the steps involved in RPL assessment, including candidate application, evidence collection, assessment methods, and decision-making processes.

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(d) RPL Policy Intention:

Clearly articulate the intended outcomes of the policy.

This section should highlight the benefits for stakeholders, such as candidates, assessors, institutions, and employers.

Emphasize the policy’s role in recognizing and valuing diverse learning experiences and competencies.

(e) RPL Policy Custodian:

Identify the individual or entity responsible for overseeing and managing the implementation of the RPL policy.

This custodian plays a vital role in ensuring compliance, maintaining records, and facilitating communication among stakeholders.

(f) RPL Practitioner Responsibility:

  • Appointment: Specify the criteria and procedures for appointing RPL practitioners. This may include qualifications, experience, and ongoing professional development requirements.
  • Function/Role: Define the responsibilities and duties of RPL practitioners. This includes conducting assessments, providing guidance to candidates, ensuring compliance with policies and procedures, and maintaining confidentiality.

By structuring your RPL policy headings in this manner, you create a comprehensive framework that addresses key aspects of policy implementation and administration.

Remember, clarity and attention to detail are paramount to the success of your RPL policy.

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    Writing the Procedure for the RPL Policy


    Outline the RPL process and describe each step that must be embarked upon.

    For example, include the following details:

    Create an Assessment Plan and Delivery Program for RPL Candidates:

    The following steps must be undertaken:

    • How to Identify the award (i.e. which qualification will the candidate be RPL’d for
    • How to determine Candidate eligibility
    • Analysis of knowledge, skills, and competence
    • Process and rules followed for gathering evidence
      • What must the Portfolio of Evidence contain?
      • What direct evidence is applicable, examples:
        • Project or work-based assignments
        • Evidence of work-based assessment – on-the-job assessment for work skills
        • Job specifications
        • Company organization charts
        • Personnel records of in-house training and development
        • Accounts of personal experiences
        • Employer endorsement and / testimonials
        • Prior qualifications, Certificates of Education & Training etc
        • Training, assessment and test results
        • Curricula /course descriptions/outcomes
        • Staff training records / personal records
        • Products of work, samples of documentation/work undertaken, photographs
      • What indirect evidence is allowed, examples:
        • Membership in related organizations and societies
        • General references
        • Newspaper cuttings
        • Other evidence – accounts of overseas experience, voluntary work etc.
        • All relevant evidence and documents relating to the prior learning of the candidate must be identified by the candidate. Some evidence will be readily available, some require further research through contact with present and former employers, personnel departments, trainers, personal contacts, and other supportive sources.
        • As part of candidate support the RPL Practitioner as mentor will assist the Candidate to identify the range and types of evidence to be presented.

    Assessment Steps:

    • How is the evidence assessed?
    • How do you make a recommendation?
    • What is the Appeals or Dispute process?
    • What are the RPL Candidates’ responsibilities?
    • How are assessments recorded?
    rpl policy rpl qualifications

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Designing the RPL Policy and Procedure

    Q1: Why is it important to have a well-designed RPL policy and procedure?

    A1: A well-designed RPL policy and procedure ensures fairness, transparency, and consistency in recognizing prior learning.

    It provides clear guidelines for candidates, assessors, and stakeholders, enhancing trust and credibility in the RPL process.

    Q2: How can I ensure that my RPL policy aligns with industry standards and best practices?

    A2: Aligning your RPL policy with industry standards and best practices requires expertise and thorough understanding of regulatory requirements.

    7Sundays offers professional policy writing services.

    We specialize in crafting policies that meet accreditation standards and comply with relevant regulations.

    Q3: How can I customize the policy to meet the specific needs of my organization?

    A4: Customizing your RPL policy to align with the specific needs of your organization requires careful consideration of various factors, including organizational goals, target audience, and industry regulations.

    7Sundays policy writing services offer personalized consultations to understand your unique requirements and develop tailored solutions that address them effectively.

    Q5: What are the benefits of outsourcing policy writing services?

    A5: Outsourcing policy writing to professionals like 7Sundays offers several benefits, including expertise, efficiency, and compliance.

    By entrusting your policy development to experienced writers, you can ensure that your policy meets the highest standards while freeing up internal resources for other critical tasks.

    education quality management systems support for seta and qcto accreditation legislation

    Q6: How can I evaluate the effectiveness of my RPL policy and procedure?

    A6: Evaluating the effectiveness of your RPL policy and procedure requires ongoing monitoring, feedback collection, and performance assessment.

    While implementing your policy, 7Sundays can provide guidance on establishing evaluation mechanisms to measure its impact and identify areas for improvement.

    Q7: How can I get started with designing my RPL policy and procedure?

    A7: To initiate the design process for your RPL policy and procedure, reach out to 7Sundays policy writing services for a consultation.

    Our team of experts will collaborate with you to understand your goals, assess your needs, and develop a customized plan to create a robust and effective RPL policy and procedure.

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