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RPLO Development Event. Welcome to York St John University Tony Wall and Dr Penny McCracken Independent Consultants. Objectives. Share key developments in the field Debate the assumptions that drive our policies and practices Change our policies and practices.

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rplo development event

RPLO Development Event

Welcome to York St John University

Tony Wall and Dr Penny McCracken

Independent Consultants



Share key developments in the field

Debate the assumptions that drive our policies and practices

Change our policies and practices

innovation in quality assurance perspectives

Innovation in quality assurance perspectives

Dr Penny McCracken and Tony Wall

Independent Consultants

issues you raised
Issues you raised
  • Limits on APEL credit ‘allowed’
  • Understanding ‘learning’, not trusting ‘learning from work’ as equivalent to ‘learning’, “teaching to fill the gaps not teaching the whole lot again”
  • Staff buy-in, acceptance outside traditional areas
  • Time for assessors, funding
  • Complexity of process
first principles
‘First’ Principles
  • HEIs are in ‘the business’ of accrediting learning
  • Securing publicised award outcomes
  • Learning, not experience/achievement
  • Guided by external reference points, e.g. the AI, where appropriate:
    • Subject benchmark statements (SBSs)
    • the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ)
  • Assessments based on academic judgement
  • Open to internal/external scrutiny

See QAA (2004) and CEDEFOP (2009)

flexible curricula design
Flexible curricula design
  • Shell award frameworks
    • Negotiated: content, modules, award, award title
    • Generic level outcomes
    • Reference the AI (FHEQ and SBSs)
    • Institutional, subject or short awards
  • Modules...
    • Generic (rather than specific) credit?
    • What is the difference, in terms of teaching, learning and assessment?

See Wall and McCracken (2010); Wall (2010a)

related pedagogies
Related ‘Pedagogies’
  • A ‘Meticulous Accountant’ type
    • Closely aligned to Specific Credit
    • Mapping experiential learning to outcomes
  • A ‘Creative Sculptor’ type
    • Closely aligned to Generic Credit
    • Exploring and articulating informal experiential learning, in partnership
    • How different to taught modules?
    • A case for...

See Wall (2010b)

experiential learning awards
Experiential learning awards?
  • In ‘the business’ of accrediting learning
  • Within AI (FHEQ, SBSs)
  • But... facilitated ‘extraction’ and articulation of learning through an award
  • So... no distinction between “APEL” and “Taught” – in both, there is the facilitation of the articulation of learning
  • So... funded through the same mechanisms...
  • So... no limit, because no distinction

See Wall (2010a, 2010b)

workshop discussion 30 mins
Workshop Discussion (30 mins)
  • From what you have heard, discuss:
    • What might be possible in your context?
    • What may the barriers be?
  • Agree the following to share at 2.30pm:
    • 2 ideas of what could be possible
    • 1 key barrier and 1 possible solution
  • Facilitators to capture key ideas

CEDEFOP (2009) European guidelines for validating non-formal and informal learning, Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities,.

QAA (2004) Guidelines on the accreditation of prior learning, available at http://www.qaa.ac.uk/academicinfrastructure/apl/guidance.asp

Wall, T. (2010a) Prefiguring higher education as action inquiry, ALARA World Congress, September, Melbourne.

Wall, T. (2010b) APL Pedagogies: Meticulous Accountant vs Creative Sculptor, Council for Adult & Experiential Learning’s International Conference – Creating The Wave: Workforce, Education and Change, November, San Diego.

Wall, T. and McCracken, P. (2010) University Models for Validating Work Based Learning, in Mumford, J. and Roodhouse, S. (Eds) Understanding Work Based Learning, London: Gower.