Practical learning: achieving excellence in the human services

January 23-25 2008 Edinburgh International Conference Centre

SCQF and RPL social services project

Keywords: recognition of prior informal learning, learning from experience, SCQF, developing confidence, reflective writing

Authors: Dr Alison Harold (SSSC), Ruth Whittaker

The Recognition of Prior Informal Learning (RPL), a key development in the implementation of the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework in social services, enables employees to draw from what they had learned from their experience to work towards qualifications for registration with SSSC and for continuous employee development. The RPL-SVQ project developed materials to support learners as they grow in confidence, recognise the skills and knowledge they have learned from previous experience, and develop the capacity to think and write reflectively. The materials also support learners through assessments towards SVQ3 in Health and Social Care.
The RPL materials were tested in the first stage of a pilot study with groups of learners and mentors in voluntary, public and private organisations. Stage one evaluation concluded that this RPL process was very successful in helping learners to develop their confidence and to reflect critically on their practice. Stage two involves tracking learners as they work towards attaining SVQ3. Focus group feedback will contribute the final project evaluation. Four documents make up the guidance and resources for mentors and learners:

Although the materials were developed to support learners working towards SVQ3 they have much wider use. They can be used to support all aspects of workforce development including:


Date: Wednesday 23 January 2008, 1.30-3.00

Venue: Carrick One

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Organised by the Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services in association with PEPE (Practical Experiences in Professional Education).