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14 Mar 2017 225 2 mins Share

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and Reduced Volume Learning (RVL) at Universities Abroad

Are you aware of ‘Recognition of Prior Learning’ and ‘Reduced Volume Learning’ at universities abroad? Learn who are eligible for RPL and RVL!

14 Mar 2017 225 2 mins Share
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How would you feel if a university abroad could acknowledge your prior learning and transfer some credits to your current course or if the university could reduce the volume of your new course, accepting your prior learning or work experience that is relevant to your current degree. Will you feel good? Well, such practices are called Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and Reduced Volume Learning (RVL). A few universities abroad follow them and many international students are benefited by these methods.

What’s RPL?

Recognition of prior learning or RPL is where universities abroad recognise your previous relevant learning or work experience and consider it towards shortening the length of an award course or reduce the volume of learning by transferring some credit points to the course that you undertake.

What’s RVL?

Reduced Volume Learning or RVL is awarded only for masters, not for undergraduate, graduate certificate or graduate diploma programmes. It is used to reduce the number of credit points that count towards a course based on your previous relevant work experience or learning.  

Who can study RPL and RVL?

RPL is for students who feel they have reasonable skills and knowledge and would like to fast-track their education style. You can apply for RPL either online or at a university abroad.

The RPL guarantees credits to be transferred if you have prior learning in a relevant field that complements your current field of study. And the prior experience could be any formal or informal learning. In academic terms, if you have prior experience and knowledge acquired through any paid or unpaid work or any organisational involvement, then you can get RPL from a recognised university abroad. To apply for RPL, a student has to file an application, and every university will have a set of guidelines based on which it decides to offer this programme to a student. The practice of granting RPL to any student is at the discretion of a university.

RPL can also help those students who want to transfer to some other university midway due to any reason. The transition for such students would be easy if they could follow the university pre-requisites and pursue a relevant course similar to the previous one.

On the other hand, the RVL is for masters students who have relevant industry experience or knowledge in any particular field and want to pursue a similar field at a university abroad. Under such circumstances, the university can grant RVL to a student and reduce the number of credits that count towards the current course.

What if you have gaps?

Well, that’s a good question. If you have a year gap, you need to check with the university where you are willing to apply for RPL or RVL if they entertain candidates who have relevant skills along with year gap(s).

Some top-notch universities abroad that provide RPL programmes are as follows:

  1. University of Melbourne
  2. The University of Sydney (check the screenshot below taken from the University prospectus).
  3. University of Eastern Finland
  4. University of Bristol

How to apply?

To apply for RPL and RVL, in each case, you need to submit the required documents, such as if you have prior education, you need to submit your transcripts whereas if you have prior work experience, you need to submit your CV along with an official letter from your current employer. You also need to specify the roles and responsibilities that you previously undertook.

Please note both RPL and RVL are not shortcuts to achieve any degrees abroad. Also, following this route doesn’t mean you need to staunchly mention about your RPL or RVL later, after completing your degree.

Do you have more doubts? Ask the expert! Our study abroad experts are here to guide you and help you with more information on abroad studies.

Image source: Distance Learning Australia.

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