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C1-2 Review how RPL can integrate into curricula at design/review stage


  • How can RPL be integrated into curricula to ensure parity of informal/non-formal learning with formal learning? 
  • To what extent should RPL be fully integrated into curriculum design rather than as a "bolt-on" to curriculum delivery?
  • To what extent can RPL support the design of more flexible provision e.g. work-based learning, part-time provision? 

Good practice

  • Programme design explicitly addresses flexible modes of entry, progression and delivery, linked to a wider understanding and recognition of RPL across the institution including quality assurance.
  • Use of programme level outcomes or SCQF level descriptors rather than module level learning outcomes is made to enable an easier comparison between the outcomes the curriculum seeks to achieve in terms of capacity and competence and those demonstrated through personal or professional experiences
  • Learning outcomes facilitate a range of different routes for their achievement which link into delivery and assessment methods.
  • Programme design enables students to build on the range of competencies and knowledge gained through work-based and other experience which learners bring to the curriculum.
  • RPL is integrated within work-based learning programmes, forming an intrinsic part of the planning and evidence-gathering process, rather than viewed as a discrete activity before the programme commences.
  • Links between RPL and educational or personal and professional development planning are made explicit.
  • Employability skills and graduate attributes are made explicit through validation processes and module/programme learning outcomes and are explicitly linked to RPL.
  • Competencies from employers and professional bodies are mapped to learning outcomes and links to RPL are made explicit.
  • Flexible entry routes and alternative routes to credit, whether through RPL, credit transfer, articulation, or work-based learning, are addressed at the point of programme design rather than programme delivery.
  • RPL is used with employees in the workplace to support more flexible, part-time provision as part of regional and national workforce development agendas.
  • Programme design is aligned with how learners learn in the workplace.
  • RPL (as noted by the SCQF) is a gateway rather than a barrier to learning. 
  • RPL promotes the positive aspects of an individual's learning experience, not its deficiency.