Accreditation of Prior Learning

What is Accreditation of Prior Learning?

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) is a process which allows you to gain academic credits from prior learning or experience outside of education. With APL, we can assess and formally recognise learning which has taken place in the past. It may have been:

Prior certificated learning (APCL) – Learning completed at another educational institution where qualifications and academic credits were achieved.

Prior experiential learning (APEL) – Achieved from experiences outside the formal education and training systems (e.g. work/ life experience), or via non-credit bearing courses (e.g. in-house training).

Why might I need Accreditation of Prior Learning?

There are many reasons why you may need an Accreditation of Prior Learning some of the reasons are listed below:

  • If you do not meet the standard entry requirements.
  • Your qualifications were taken over 5 years prior to the start of the course.
  • You are transferring to the course with previous credits gained from another institution.
  • You have a non-standard educational background. 


How do I apply?

You need to apply for any prior learning to be recognised and accredited. You will fill out a form on our website where you will need to complete a 500 – 750 word statement and you will have the opportunity to submit supporting evidence.

How long do I have to complete this requirement?

You will have 14 days to complete your accreditation of prior learning form from the date of our first email to you about the process. 

What makes a good Accreditation of Prior Learning application?

An Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning Application assesses the knowledge you have gained prior to starting on the course, how this has been applied, as well as the skills you have acquired and how they have been used. You could consider some the following areas to cover in your reflective statement:

  • Work experience (paid or unpaid/ voluntary), e.g. a role that undertook on set or shadowed or semi professional projects you have worked on.
  • Non-accredited courses, e.g. in-house training, personal interested courses
  • Life experience from Travel, Home and family or a job. Reading and research.
  • Your own proven study.

Please note: All examples will need to be relevant to the subject and level of your course application.

What supporting evidence can I submit?

  • We would love to see your portfolio and the best work that you have produced. 
  • An up to date CV covering your most relevant work experience. 
  • Any certificates for validated/short courses you may have done that are relevant to the course you are applying for.
  • Written professional or academic references on letter headed paper would also be helpful but not necessary. 

What happens once I submit my form?

This will be assessed by a member of the team and you will be contacted as to whether or not the application was successful.