Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL): The learning never stopsChen Wan Lim
The Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning or APEL, under the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA), is a systematic approach of identifying, documenting and assessing prior experiential learnings to carefully determine the extent to which an individual has achieved the desired learning outcomes to either continue pursuing higher formal education or to gain award for credits. The main objective of APEL is to provide the opportunity for individuals with working experiences but lack formal academic qualifications to pursue their studies in approved higher education institutions.
There are currently two categories of APEL which are APEL(A) and APEL(C).
Under APEL(A), applicants who have little to no formal education are given the chance to continue pursuing higher education at approved higher education institutions. In general, APEL(A) allows the applicant to be considered for higher education admission using his or her former education and also the experience gained through employment. To date, there are four evaluations under APEL(A) which are:
- Entry for Certificate courses (APEL T-3);
– Applicants need to be at least 19 years old and possess relevant work experiences
– Application fee is RM155
- Entry for Diploma courses (APEL T-4);
– Applicants need to be at least 20 years old and possess relevant work experiences
– Application fee is RM155
- Entry for Bachelor’s degree (APEL T-6) and;
– Applicants need to be at least 21 years old and possess relevant work experience
– Application fee is RM250
- Entry for Master’s degree (APEL T-7)
– Applications need to be at least 30 years old and possess at least an STPM or Diploma level education and relevant work experiences
– Application fee is RM350
Applications for APEL T-7 is currently only limited to business, performing arts, information technology, education, management, science, occupational health and safety, media studies, journalism, visual communication, media communication, mechanical and manufacturing engineering, electronic engineering, communication engineering, civil engineering, chemical engineering, software engineering, computer science and information system.
For the APEL(A) category, applicants will be given an aptitude test comprising four aspects namely Bahasa Melayu, English, Mathematics and Critical Thinking. Applicants will then be asked to compile a portfolio of related experiences and finally be interviewed for approximately 45 minutes by a two-person interview panel (only for Master’s degree applicants). Up to December 2016, Wawasan Open University and Open University Malaysia have been appointed to undertake the evaluation exercise for applicants.
- What is APEL(A)?
- Circulars / Notification Letters
- APEL Assesment Center vs Universiti Rakan
- Field of Studies
- Certification Process For Master’s Degree
- Assessment Fee For Master’s Degree
- Portfolio For Master’s Degree
- Handbook For Learners: Master’s Degree
- Apply For APEL
- Print Application
Under APEL(C), applicants can apply for credit waivers of up to 30% of total credit requirements for a course based on the applicant’s prior education experience and working experiences. Both citizens and non-citizens of Malaysia can apply for credit waivers under APEL(C). The main principle used for determining credit waivers is to match the applicant’s competencies with the course learning outcome (CLO). The common methods employed under APEL(C) to assess applicants are via a ‘challenge test’ or a ‘portfolio test’ where a list of prior knowledge and competencies are compiled.
As of December 2016, four higher education institutions namely UiTM, Wawasan Open University, Open University Malaysia and INTI International University have been appointed to undertake the evaluation exercise for the applicants.