What is Recognition of Prior Learning?

Recognition of Prior Learning (or RPL) is an assessment process aimed at confirming and recognising the competencies a candidate has obtained outside of a formal education and training environment.

These competencies might have been gained through informal or non-formal training, or they may have been gained through life or work experience. RPL assessment enables individuals to forego training and move directly to having their competencies assessed, thus avoiding the need for unnecessary training that brings with it additional costs, including time and effort.

Although it is not necessarily a quick or simple process, RPL aims to provide candidates who do not require formal learning with a flexible and faster way to have their skills and knowledge assessed against the competencies stipulated in Training Packages and vocationally accredited courses.

Why apply? What’s in it for me?

If you think you already have the experience relevant to a Unit of Competency or qualification, you may apply for Recognition of Prior Learning.

The advantages of applying for Recognition of Prior Learning are:

  • You identify where your experience has provided you with knowledge and skills that are required by the Unit of Competency or qualification
  • If you have already achieved the Unit of Competency for a course you will not have to re-do those programs
  • You complete your course/qualification quicker and you would have attended fewer days of training
  • You don’t do programs in which you have proven competence.


Candidates can achieve qualifications listed under AVELING’s ‘scope of registration’ (RTO No: 50503) by demonstrating competence in:

  • Individual Units of Competency
  • Skills Sets (a combination of several Units of Competency), or
  • Certificate or Diploma qualifications

Combination of Pathways

Where candidates for assessment have gained competencies through work and life experience and gaps in their competence have been identified, or where they require training in new areas, a combination of pathways may be appropriate.

In such situations, the candidate may undertake an initial assessment to determine their current competency. Once current competency is identified, a structured learning and assessment program ensures that the applicant acquires the required additional competencies identified as gaps.

Recognition of Qualifications Issued by Other RTO’s

Under the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF), AVELING recognises and accepts any Statements of Attainment and Qualifications issued by any other Registered Training Organisation (RTO).

How much does it cost?

The fee structure will depend on which RPL method the Candidate chooses and how many Units of Competency are being undertaken. The cost for RPL application and evidence method is listed in the relevant RPL Application document.

When the candidate has submitted the application and documentation for assessment, AVELING will then invoice the individual or organisation.

How You Are Assessed

The Assessor will use the following decision making rules when reviewing your submission:

Currency of evidence Evidence should be relatively recent (as a guide, no more than one to two years).
Authenticity The documentation provided should verify that the evidence is that of the candidate and/or part of a team contribution.
Sufficiency There should be enough evidence to demonstrate to the Assessor competence against the entire unit(s) of competency or qualification.
Validity Once the evidence within the submission has been determined to be trustworthy and appropriate, the evidence will need to be judged against evidence criteria for each unit of competency or qualification.

What should I do next?

At this stage, candidates need to consider how their prior experience relates to the Unit or Units of Competency for which they are applying for RPL. You can contact AVELING on (08) 9379 9999 for the relevant Units of Competency or download them from www.training.gov.au website.

If you believe you have the skills and knowledge required and can provide evidence to support a submission, please contact AVELING and you will be sent an Application Kit for the unit or units you wish to apply for. The Application Kit will provide clear instructions on how to apply for the RPL.