The South African Council for the Architectural Profession has launched an online platform that re-ignites the Recognition of Prior Learning programme. In December last year, the South African Council for the Architectural Profession (SACAP) unveiled an online platform that aims to re-ignite the council’s Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) programme. The architectural professionals’ regulatory body had undergone a process of testing newly designed RPL software and is proud to announce that the programme is now available in a new format that will benefit draughtspersons, architectural technologists and senior architects.

SACAP’s strategic plan and objectives are aligned with the imperatives of the National development Plan (NDP) and the roll out of its cutting-edge large scale infrastructure projects. The launch of its re-ignited RPL programme has been a key strategic objective to help realise transformation within the profession and the broader Built Environment.

The RPL programme will assess previously acquired skills and knowledge with the view to providing an opportunity to advance to the next level of professional registration. Users will follow a two-stage process that involves online self-assessment as well as jury authentication. Each practitioner will have to demonstrate project work from the last three to five years, depending on their registration category. The authentication juries will convene in major cities around the country, based on demand or twice every year. To this end, a video tutorial has been produced to guide first time users who will need to enter evidence that demonstrates they meet the minimum standards in ten different outcome areas. This process aims not only to lead to more work opportunities for professionals within the industry, but also to uplift the professional status of successful applicants.

The RPL isn’t an academic qualification and the goal is to give applicants the opportunity to elevate their professional registration. An individual must be registered as a professional and as such, have passed SACAP’s Professional Practice Exams (PPEs) to be eligible to apply.

SACAP estimates that 500-plus professionals across the country, commonly referred to as “The Missing Middle”, need access to equal opportunity and practical redress for past imbalances and are eager to take their first steps on SACAP’s innovative RPL online platform. Yashaen Luckan, President of SACAP, anticipates that equity statistics will improve through this RPL programme.

“The fundamental philosophy on which the RPL assessment is based is that practitioners in all four categories essentially share the same professional landscape and social responsibilities. They are exposed to exactly the same technological, environmental, legislative and socio-economic parameters and constraints, although arguably to different degrees, depending on the complexity of the project and circumstances,” says Yashaen.

SACAP is ensuring that a virtual library will be available for those professionals who need to supplement their knowledge before demonstrating readiness to present before the jury.

For more information, visit www.sacapsa.com or call +27 (11) 479 5000.