The South African Council of the Architectural Profession (SACAP) has relaunched its Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) programme that will help professionals to reach the next level of professional registration.As part of the South African Council of the Architectural Profession’s (SACAP’s) vision to realise transformation within the profession and broader built environment, it has relaunched its Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) programme at the end of last year.
This follows a lengthy period of consultation between SACAP and its Voluntary Associations (VA), as well as intense testing of the newly designed RPL software.
The purpose of RPL is to assess previously acquired skills and knowledge, and provide an opportunity to articulate to the next level of professional registration. This will uplift the professional status of successful applicants and is expected to help them unlock more lucrative work opportunities.
It should be noted though that it is not an academic qualification in itself.
To be eligible for access to the platform, an individual must be registered as a professional and as such, have passed SACAP’s Professional Practice Exams (PPE).
Through its research, SACAP estimates that more than 500 professionals across the country, commonly referred to as “The Missing Middle”, need access to equal opportunity and practical redress for past imbalances. Each will have to demonstrate project work from the last three to five years, depending on their registration category.
The programme has been designed as a two-phase process. The first phase happens online and allows for self-assessment. 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.
The outcome of this assessment determines whether the user can progress to the second phase, which includes them being invited to present their work evidenced in the self-assessment phase for review by an authentication jury.
Applicants may be required to undertake a design test or mini dissertation. In the spirit of transparency and constructive input, every applicant will be issued with an assessment rubric with points range and comments. An independent adjudicator will be part of this jury. Any unsuccessful candidate may lodge an appeal with the registrar, who will steer it through a carefully formulated appeals process.
For professionals who need to first supplement their knowledge in order to demonstrate readiness to present to the jury, SACAP will make available a virtual library through its partnership with the Architectural Learning Sites (ALS) and Voluntary Associations (VA) that are validated by it. This is envisaged to include access to online journals, dissertations and material from Professional Practice Examinations (PPE) and previous Continuing Professional Development (CPD) courses.
Equity is key
The president of SACAP, Yashaen Luckan, says: “I anticipate equity statistics will improve through this RPL programme and am certain it will enable the realisation of our vision for people-centred architecture.”
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President of SACAP, Yashaen Luckan, explains how registered professionals can further their careers through SACAP’s Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) programme.