Credit transfer and Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition
Prior Learning Recognition andAssessment and Credit Transfer:A Canadian ExperienceTerry AndersonPhD and ProfessorCentre for Distance EducationCIDUI SymposiumInternational Conference on UniversityTeaching and Innovation29 May 2013Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB)
A business or industry, as a livingorganism, often must evolve(i.e., to overcome or evenleverage changes) in order toseek higher efficiencies andensure itslong-term sustainability(Kim, 2010).
Drivers for Change• Need for constant, lifelong learning• Access to multiple resources– Informal – OERs, learning networks, MOOCs– Formal – multiple institutions, professionalaccreditation• Lower costs for content, improving machinetesting• Increased human mobility• More demand for evidence of competence andqualifications
• Learning is normal, valuableand happens all the time.• Why does it not lead toacademic credit?
New Affordances• Open Educational resources• Learning communities and networks• MOOCs• Knowledge wikipedia, Answers.com
If you want to learn how to fix a pipe, solve apartial differential equation, writesoftware, you are seconds away from know-how via YouTube, Wikipedia and searchengines. Access to technology and access toknowledge, however, isn’t enough. Learning isa social, active, and ongoing process.What does a motivated group of self-learnersneed to know to agree on a subject or skill, findand qualify the best learning resources about thattopic, select and use appropriate communicationmedia to co-learn it?http://peeragogy.org/
Massive (But Not Open) Master’s• “The Georgia Institute of Technology plans tooffer a $7,000 online master’s degree to10,000 new students over the next three yearswithout hiring much more than a handful (8)of new instructors.”• Regular fee $40,000 /year• Inside Higher Ed– May 15 2013
Prior Learning Assessment andRecognition:• "The formal acknowledgement ofskills, knowledge, and competencies that aregained through work experience, informaltraining, and life experience" (UNESCO :Vlãsceanu, et al., 2004).
Flexible paths to assessment for OERlearners: A comparative study• Conrad &McGreal, (2012)• Purposively selected 31institutions from 10countries, known to be interestedin open or alternative education
• “resistance within institutions to RPL practice”• Almost all charged fees for RPL• “Usher, Bryant, and Johnston (1997) point out, "itoffers a contestable and ambiguous terrain wheredifferent socio-economic and culturalassumptions and strategies can be differentiallyarticulated. [However], as a field of tension, it canbe exploited by different groups, eachemphasizing certain dimensions over others"(p105).
• http://www.oer-europe.net/Briefing PapersIn order to develop a framework of learning based on study usingOERs, that is shared among several universities, OERtest will stimulateexchange between Higher Education experts in qualityassurance, recognition of prior learning, credit transfers andinstitutional issues such as strategy development and HEI financingfrom our partner universities as well as researchers/practitioners ofopen educational practice. These activities will firstly result in fourbriefing papers on• Assessment methods• Requirements and standards of resources•Credentilization, certification and recognition (institutional)• Inter-institutional collaboration
Credit Transfer• Over 50% of Athabasca undergraduatestudents are taking courses, that they willtransfer into other institutions.• Athabasca acts as a service provider forstudents and institutions across Canada
Credit Transfer• Relies on Trust• Europe has a long history from medieval days ofmobility• Successful EU Programs?? –Socrates, Eramsmus, Lifelong Learning Programme– Coles, M., & Oates, T. (2005).• Student mobility without credit transfer is neutered.• Addresses high personal and social cost of non-completion, allowing second chances and life-longlearning• Especially important for high risk and disadvantagedlearners.
Credit transfer at Athabasca• https://secure3.athabascau.ca/tcas/transfer.cgi
E-Portfolio Solution• Maintaining an accurate record of formal andinformal learning is critical.
Badges• No evidence such external motivators createlong term benefit or motivation. Kohn (1993) Punishedby Rewards• But useful as evidence of accomplishment atlower level of granularity than course ordegree.
Conclusions• Credit transfer and prior learning assessmentand recognition are:– Disruptive– Necessary– A critical component of a 21century University.Terry Anderson firstname.lastname@example.orgBlog: terrya.edublogs.org