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Paget, QLD 4740
07 49 985 398

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Recognition of Prior Learning Policy

Click Here to Download PDF version of this policy


Zero Harm Safety and Training is committed to ensuring that all trainees are given the opportunity to be granted recognition or any relevant prior learning.

Zero Harm Safety & Training will ensure that:

This procedure outlines the process to be followed that enables trainees/students applying for RPL to gain
recognition of their existing competencies and prior workforce skills and experience.

As an outcome, trainees may be able to obtain exemption from undertaking some training within the training framework and/or receive recognition for competencies.

A person must be assessed for RPL before he/she begins that part of the course for which he/she is proposing to apply for RPL. RPL evidence must be submitted with an RPL Application Form (ZHST-RTO-0085) to Zero Harm Safety and Training (ZHST) within two weeks of starting a course. There will be no provision after this timeline has passed.

The RPL application will be processed according to the criteria set out in this policy and will be granted for complete modules or units of competency.

Trainees/students who disagree with their RPL outcome or believe that the process may not have followed appropriate procedures may undertake grievance procedures.

The assessor will base their judgment for granting RPL on evidence provided by the applicant in their demonstration of the appropriate skills or a practical demonstration.

Management of Recognition of Prior Learning

The Principle Consultant will appoint trainers to be responsible for the Recognition of Prior Learning. The
appointed trainers must have appropriate technical experience and hold at least a TAE40110 Certificate IV in
Training and Assessment.

The appointed trainers will maintain a register for recording the applications for and results of RPL assessments
and will ensure that applicants are informed in writing of the outcomes of their RPL application.
Trainers will advise applicants of the outcomes of their RPL application within 10 working days of submission.


Zero Harm Safety & Training will provide qualified RPL Assessors who shall be responsible for the RPL process by:

  • Advising intending applicants regarding the RPL process;
  • Assisting applicants with the preparation of their application;
  • Processing applications;
  • Convening the RPL Assessment Panel and advising the applicant of the time, place and date of the interview (if required)
  • Providing RPL guidelines for Subject Matter Experts (if required)

RPL Assessors shall be responsible for ensuring that the RPL process is followed in a fair, equitable and consistent manner.

Subject Matter Experts shall be responsible for making recommendations on competencies being claimed to the RPL Assessor. This recommendation is to be accepted by the RPL Assessor unless they believe the correct process has not been followed.Guidelines and Steps Required in the RPL Process

Guidelines and Steps Required in the RPL Process

All students will be given the opportunity to apply for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for industry skills or life skills, or where credit or credit transfer may apply.

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) acknowledges the full range of an individual’s skills and knowledge, irrespective of how it has been acquired. This includes competencies gained through formal study, work experience, employment and other life experiences.

All students are informed of the right to RPL and the process on enrolment. The RPL Application Form (ZHSTRTO-0085) is available from the training consultant. Students wanting to apply for Recognition for past experience need to do so within two weeks of enrolment by lodging an RPL Application Form (ZHST-RTO-0085).

The training consultant will inform students of the outcomes of their RPL application within 10 working days of submitting the application.

RPL is assessed against the units of competency in a program based on the completion of one or a combination of the following:

  1. Interviews
  2. Confirmation of Testimonials
  3. Validated Workplace Logbooks
  4. Skills/Challenge testing
  5. Written/Oral reviews

The steps for RPL

  1. Student/trainee requests recognition at enrolment
  2. Appropriate qualification and competency are identified at enrolment
  3. Training consultant will advise student/trainee of evidence required; The student will be given access to the full curriculum so they can clearly identify the learning outcomes or competencies they have to apply;
  4. Student collects evidence to support claim for RPL, which must be submitted to Zero Harm Safety and Training within two weeks of starting a course. An RPL Application form (ZHST-RTO-0085) must be completed and forwarded, with any supporting evidence, to the Principle Consultant
  5. Zero Harm Safety and Training will then analyse individual experience and qualifications against appropriate learning outcomes/competency statements, the Principle Consultant and Training Consultant will complete this process
  6. If claim matches learning outcomes/competencies then full recognition is granted
  7. If claim does not match learning outcomes/competencies then further evidence will be requested, this may also involve an interview where applicant will support his/her case. Further evidence must be supplied within two weeks.
  8. If further evidence is not recognised then claim will be rejected, a letter of advice will be forwarded to applicant advising of decision either way. If student/trainee wishes to appeal decision he/she must inform ZHST in writing within 1 week of rejection letter
  9. Student/trainee may appeal decision and ask for a subject matter expert to make a recommendation, the cost of this further process will be shared equally by the student/trainee and ZHST.
  10. Letter of advice will be forwarded to student/trainee outlining the costs of further process. Once student/trainee has paid his/her share of cost for further process (must be received within 1 week of request for payment). The Subject Matter Expert will be obtained and his recommendation will be heard.
  11. Letter of advice of outcome will be forwarded to applicant within two weeks of final decision.
  12. Completed RPL Application Form with attachments will be placed on the student/trainees file
  13. Details of the Application recorded on the RPL Assessment Register – (ZHST-RTO-0086).

Credit Transer

If you have a prior Qualification or a Statement of Attainment issued under the Australian Qualifications Framework from any other registered training organisation, ZHST will give exemptions for those units of competency. Students will need to provide the original certificate or statement of attainment and a copy for the training consultant to view. Once the original is viewed the training consultant must sign and date the copy to confirm the original was sighted. Credit transfer will be granted only when the units in the course previously undertook are the same.

Principles underlying RPL

RPL is based on a set of principles as follows:

  • Commitment – Conviction on the part of the education and training provider of the worth of RPL is essential. This commitment is necessary to ensure that quality procedures will support the implementation of the model
  • Access – Mechanisms and practices must enable all potential applicants to gain entry to the process. It is therefore important that the procedures
  • Fairness – Processes utilised must be verifiable, credible and just. All students/trainees must be confident that the RPL process and its outcomes are fair
  • Openness – The way in which all decisions, criteria and processes are determined must be governed by these principles. All students/trainees in the process need to be able to contribute to the way decisions are made
  • Support – Potential applicants and personnel involved in implementing the policy shall receive adequate support in order to maintain a quality RPL system