Amsterdam Tech


It is possible to bring and receive credit for previous learning experiences towards your Amsterdam Tech programme. The process to apply for credit for external learning is called Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). The RPL process can include previous learning that has occurred in any of a range of contexts (including school, college or university or through life and work experiences). After careful assessment, the university can recognise your prior learning through the award of credit and/or exemption from a module or modules in a programme at Amsterdam Tech at the bachelor’s and master’s level.


The policy covers the recognition of the following prior forms of learning:

  1. The recognition of the following types of prior learning which have not previously resulted in the award of credits or qualifications on the European Framework for Higher Education Qualifications, and which will therefore require assessment by the University:
    • RPEL Recognition of Prior Experiential Learning – a process through which learning achieved outside education or training systems is assessed and, as appropriate, recognised for academic purposes, usually through the award of credit.
    • RPCL Recognition of Prior Certificated Learning – a process, through which prior certificated learning which has not previously resulted in the award of university credits or qualifications positioned on the relevant HE qualifications framework is assessed and recognised by the Amsterdam Tech for academic purposes, usually through the award of credit. Prior Certificated Learning may include professional development or employment-related awards.
  2. Credit Transfer of credits/qualifications from another European higher education awarding body for use towards a Amsterdam Tech qualification or credits from a different programme at the same EQF level previously undertaken at the Amsterdam Tech. As the credits or qualification have been awarded in accordance with the EQF, the process of recognition requires academic staff to determine the status of the prior credit/award as they relate to the Amsterdam Tech programme but will not require a process of assessment as in the case of RPEL and RPCL.

This policy does not cover:

  • Prior learning at a lower EQF level than Amsterdam Tech programme applied for/being undertaken which may be considered towards University entry requirements during the Admissions process.
  • The transfer of credits, “advance standing” or other learning within collaborative programmes which is dealt with separately.
  • The transfer of credits or qualifications awarded by another European university or by an overseas degree awarding institution as part of a Study Abroad or Erasmus exchange   arrangement, which is dealt with separately.


  1. Academic departments are responsible for making potential applicants aware of opportunities for recognition of prior learning and for supporting applicants through the process.
  2. Responsibility for submitting an application for RPL, accompanied by supporting evidence, lies with the student. (Guidance for students and application forms will be provided).
  3. Applications should normally be submitted by the student at the application stage for the programme of study for which credits are being sought and should be addressed to the relevant Examination Board. 
  4. The University will normally only consider applications for exemption in relation to whole units or modules, not elements of units or modules. Departments may decide to permit applications for components of units or modules in cases where this is necessary in order to meet the requirements of a professional accrediting body or apprenticeship compliance requirements set. 
  5. Applications will only be considered for taught modules, not for the final project.


  1. Academic departments are responsible for considering applications and making recommendations to the Examination Board on the award of RPL.
  2. Academic departments that routinely handle RPL applications should have clear written procedures in place for the consideration of such requests. Departments which do not have such procedures in place but wish to consider an RPL application from an individual student, should contact the Programme Manager for advice.
  3. At least two members of the academic department concerned should be involved in the consideration of the RPL application. This would normally include the Programme Manager or the Department Dean.
  4. In considering applications for PEL and PCL, academic departments will assess whether the prior learning is equivalent in terms of learning outcomes, level and volume for the unit(s)/module(s) of the University programme of study against which credit is being sought.
  5. In considering applications for Credit Transfer of European credits / qualifications, academic departments will determine the status of the prior credit/award as it relates to the Amsterdam Tech programme.
  6. Departments may request further evidence from applicants to substantiate requests and may interview students to assist with the assessment process.
  7. The learning for which credit is being sought should normally have taken place not more than five years prior to the commencement of the University programme of study. 
  8. It should be noted that credit exemptions may affect a student’s mode of attendance as they will be taking fewer modules. Academic departments should liaise with the Programme Management to advise students accordingly.
  9. Copies of all applications, supporting evidence and related assessments should be retained within departments for as long as other forms of assessed work, in line with the University’s policy on retention of assessed work. It should be made available to external examiners, if required.


  1. Grades will not normally be attributed to credits that are awarded through RPL. In case this is specifically requested, each case will be considered separately.
  2. Classification for First Degrees and the award of Merit or Distinction for Postgraduate Degrees will not normally take into account any grades awarded by prior institutions for units where Credit Transfer has been allowed.


The student’s transcript or diploma supplement should clearly identify the modules (units) against which RPL has been awarded, the level and the amount of credits.


  1. Academic departments should provide students with information on fees for RPL. If a student gains a credit exemption for a module or modules (or module component where permitted), the student may be entitled to a pro-rata reduction in their tuition fees.


The table below sets out the maximum number of credits that the University may award through Recognition of Prior Learning.


AwardMaximum RPL CreditsTotal Programme Credits
Bachelor’s degree80240
Professional Masters3060



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