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Recognition of Prior Learning

RPL can help you getting back into learning and education 


One of the major issues for anyone returning to learning is the question of the value placed on whatever learning you have already attained. This is the area of Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).


RPL is a way in which prior learning, whether attained in a formal manner (such as a qualification you hold already) or non-formal manner (including "on the job" learning gained working in a particular occupation) is assessed and given a value.  Providers of courses can use RPL to allow a person entry to a programme of study or give them exemptions from part of the programme.


There is growing awareness that it is necessary to recognise informal, as well as formal, learning if we are to make learning accessible to all.  The use of RPL by education and training providers to allow candidates entry to a programme or exemption from part of a programme has increased over recent years.  However, RPL is not widespread and may not be available from all education and training provider.


All providers or colleges will have a policy on recognition of prior learning and it would be useful to chat to them about this when discussing your personal situation. Ask them!


More information is available on their websites and also at Recognition of Prior Learning for Providers | Quality and Qualifications Ireland (