Recognition of prior learning (RPL) arrangements and credit transfer
Are you eligible?
If you have at least 3 to 5 years bookkeeping or financial services experience and are currently running your own contract bookkeeping business you may be eligible for RPL for some of the bookkeeping units of competency in the FNS40211 Certificate IV in Bookkeeping — provided you can provide us with evidence of your skills and experience, including examples of your work.
BIA does not provide RPL of the BAS,Payroll and the Workplace Health & Safety Units .
The RPL assessment process
The RPL process formally assesses your current experience and skills and identifies any further training you may need to complete in order to obtain a Certificate IV in Bookkeeping. The process involves:
If you would like to proceed with this RPL process you will need to first contact Debra Lewis, enrol in the RPL, complete a standard enrolment form as well as an RPL Application Form. Go to : www.biau.com.au/products.asp?cat=44 and select Book this course and this will take you to the enrolment process for the Certificate IV in Bookkeeping [FastTrak] by selecting the RPL option.
What is RPL?
“Recognition of prior learning, also referred to as RPL or recognition of current competencies, is the formal recognition of a persons current skills and knowledge, no matter how, when or where the learning occurred. Even if you have never formally studied or trained in a particular area, you may have gained knowledge and skills through your education, training, work and life experience.”
Source: DETA Qld, 2013
RPL is an assessment process that assesses the individuals non-formal and informal learning to determine the extent to which that individual has achieved the required learning outcomes, competency outcomes, or standards for entry to, and/or partial or total completion of, a qualification.
RPL is about recognising existing learning outcomes, rather than how, when or where the learning occurred. For example, if you are a Financial Services student, and you have already worked in that field, you will know some of the content of the course. RPL is a way of getting credit for this learning, which may reduce the amount of time you spend studying. RPL gives you credit for your life skills – skills and knowledge you have acquired at work, home or through clubs and hobbies.
RPL assessment processes
In order to recognise prior learning it is necessary to:
The processes used to assess RPL applications may take the following forms, which are not mutually exclusive:
Steps in the RPL process
Step 1 – Provide information of your skills and experience
Complete the RPL questionnaire and provide as much information of your previous experience in the financial services and bookkeeping industries as you can. This is your first opportunity (but not the last) to provide proof of your variety of experience in the industry. Here you can supply examples of your work history which could include:
General employment documents
Workplace documents (NB: please block out any confidential client information)
Depending on the industry you have worked in, you may or may not have documentary evidence available. This should not deter you from seeking RPL as the Assessor will work with you during the RPL process.
You will also need to supply contact details of two work referees who can confirm your skills in the industry.
Step 2 – Conversation with Assessor
An assessor will review the information you have provided (usually with you) and begin to match up your skills to the units/subjects in the qualification. At this point, you will have the opportunity to discuss and identify your previous experience with the assessor who will understand your industry experience and conduct a competency conversation with you. You will be required to answer financial services industry related questions to identify your current skills.
If you are not located in the same city as your assessor this conversation will take place over the telephone.
Step 3 – Practical demonstration of your skills
If appropriate and possible the assessor will conduct a practical skills test at your workplace or at another suitable venue. This, again, is an opportunity to demonstrate your level of competence. This assessment will be focussed on skills that are required in the qualification. Your assessor will identify the skills that he/she will want you to demonstrate.
After you have completed the above steps, your assessor will give you information about the skills that have been recognised and whether you have gained the full qualification. If you do have skill gaps, these may be addressed through flexible training and specific assessments.
How do I check my skills against the course information?
You should first read through the course outlines on our website (www.biau.com.au) and determine if you can demonstrate or provide evidence that you have the skills and knowledge in the areas covered in the units.
Then you should read the detailed information on the units and the competency/learning outcomes that you wish to be assessed against, and then compare them with your own knowledge and skills before deciding whether you want to apply for RPL. This detailed information can be found by searching on the unit code at the National Training Information Service. The National Training Information Service (NTIS) is a database on vocational education and training in Australia. NTIS is the official national register of information on Training Packages, Qualifications, Courses, Units of Competency and Registered Training Organisations (RTOs).
Once you have completed your electronic application for RPL with BIA we will Email you an RPL kit and application form which contains details of all of the competency units including the elements, performance criteria, skills and knowledge required for all of the units.
The RPL Process is designed to be as fair, flexible and supportive as possible. If at any time throughout the application process you require additional information or clarification, please contact your trainer/assessor at first instance, or if the matter cannot be answered/resolved, the Director, BIA.
Who can apply for Recognition of Prior Learning?
Anyone who believes they have the skills and knowledge identified in the outcomes of a unit is encouraged to apply for RPL. The following factors may help you in deciding whether an application will be successful.
Guidelines for supplying evidence
AQTF Standards state that assessment must be based on what is sometimes termed the 'rules of evidence' - validity, reliability, fairness and flexibility. This is also good teaching and assessment practice and ensures the best learing outcome for students.
Tips and hints to help you prepare for recognition
To have your skills formally recognised in the national system, assessors must make sure you have the skills and knowledge to meet the industry standard. This means you must be involved in a careful and comprehensive process that covers the content of all unit/s or qualification/s you can be recognised for.
Assessment happens in a variety of ways. Being prepared can save you valuable time and hassle and make the recognition process stress-free for you.
Here are some tips and hints for you:
Please include as much evidence as possible with your RPL application, to give your trainer/assessor enough information to assess your competencies.
The following are the main types of evidence you should include where appropriate
Note – this is not an exhaustive list.
Applicants will have the opportunity to appeal RPL decision made by the Institute via the Compliments, Complaints & Appeals procedure. See further information about complaints and appeals in this Student Handbook or on the Institute website.