Accreditation of prior learning

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) is a process which enables you to receive recognition and gain academic credits for learning acquired in the past through formal study and through work and other life experiences. It values learning, regardless of the context in which it is acquired.

APL can be:

  • Certificated (APCL) - To give credit for learning which has been formally assessed, and for which a certificate has been awarded
  • Experiential (APEL) - To give credit for knowledge and skills which have been developed through many types of experience, usually work and voluntary activities.

Depending on the course, you may apply for both certificated and experiential learning. Your 'prior learning' credits may be mapped against specific modules, removing the need for you to study them. In the case of Negotiated Work Based Learning, your prior learning is mapped against the course as a whole, reducing the overall length of your qualification.

Benefits of APL

APL reduces the time and cost of achieving a qualification and enhances the relevance of your study as you don't have to revisit learning you have already acquired.

How does it work?

You undertake a specific short course (or module) which supports you to make your APL claim.  For experiential learning we support you to evidence your prior learning and then match this against our course, whilst for certificated learning this usually involves matching your previous certificate against our course.

For some qualifications we have already carried out a 'matching exercise' to give standard credit exemptions for anyone with these qualifications; these include qualifications from the Institute of Leadership and Management qualifications at level 7, the Institute of Healthcare Management and the National Professional Qualification in Integrated Centre Leadership.

To make an APL claim you will start your course by initially enrolling on the module Recognition and Accreditation of Prior Learning (RAPL) to make a claim for APL credits to bring into your chosen programme.

Please contact us for further information and advice.