Learning from Experience: recognition of Prior Experiential Learning

Want to gain admission to a course but your qualifications do not meet the entry requirements? You may be able to use a Recognition of Prior Experiential Learning (RPEL) process Many people have asked for more information on Recognition of Prior Experiential Learning (RPEL). I have prepared a presentation that explains the process and how it works in National College of Ireland. Comments are welcome. posted by Leo Casey

Learning and Motivation

Motivation is used as a catchall term to describe how people are moved to act in a certain manner or direction.  In everyday use there is a tendency to conceptualise motivation as mono-dimensional we often seek the motive for why a person acted in a particular way.    Single explanations for people’s actions or goals are often inadequate and misleading.  People tend to justify past-behaviour and will report a retrospective rationale.  However, models of motivation, if they are to be of use, need to provide predictions of future behaviour. The term motivation is used in many different contexts and can mean different things in everyday language. Motivation is often used to describe a level of commitment even energy such as during half time at a football match where a manager gives a team a motivational talk to ‘lift’ the team for the second half.  In such uses of the term motivation is likened to a psychic booster; one could imagine an internal M meter reading either high or low. This meaning of motivation is not limited to physical activity – people might say “coming up to the exam I became really motivated and studied for five hours every day”. It’s Read More …

Wikipedia as a source in academic writing

Have you ever heard of Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi?Pestalozzi was a Swiss educationalist – he had interesting ideas for progressive education – at the start of the nineteenth century he was advocating an enlightened approach to schooling.   Perhaps in a future blog I will further discuss Pestalozzi but the topic I have set out above is Wikipedia and I have introduced Pestalozzi as an example to support a point I wish to make.Could I invite you the reader to open a new tab and look up Pestalozzi in Wikipedia.   There you will find an excellent illustrated article containing biographical details and illustrations.  It is a good place to start if you wish to find out more about this influential thinker.   Notice that the bottom of the entry there is a list of references and links for further reading (I have inserted these below).  Starting with these references and links you now have a means to explore the writings of Pestalozzi and commentary thereon.For me this is the best use of Wikipedia – I find it a great starting point and signpost to other materials.Is Wikipedia itself an appropriate source?   In other words, if I write an essay should I cite Wikipedia Read More …

Course Entry Requirements – Recognising Learning from Experience

If you are thinking about taking a course, for example any of the NCI courses in the prospectus, you may see in the entry requirements that it is necessary for students to have a specific level of degree (e.g. honours degree) or a certificate or diploma to gain entry. These conditions are necessary so that all students are able to participate effectively and teaching staff can make certain assumptions about the level of prior knowledge people will have. However, there is a down side to this in that sometimes very good potential students miss out because on paper they are not deemed to meet the entry level requirements.We’ve all come across examples in our work where people with significant experience and competence in a particular field are not necessarily the most qualified in the formal academic sense. Not many people know this but there is a mechanism whereby anyone can obtain a formal academic credit (yes I mean a degree, diploma or certificate) by means of providing evidence that they have achieved the learning outcomes equivalent to a recognised qualification.No this is not some e-mail scam to give people cheap meaningless degrees from a little known US private college – Read More …