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Developing a Policy Framework for Assessing and Recognizing Prior Learning Key Issues for Consideration.

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Presentation on theme: "Developing a Policy Framework for Assessing and Recognizing Prior Learning Key Issues for Consideration."— Presentation transcript:

1 Developing a Policy Framework for Assessing and Recognizing Prior Learning Key Issues for Consideration

2 Background & Context  Government recognition of the importance of developing PLAR policies and strategies:  Access to the Future Act, 2005  Building & Educating Tomorrow’s Workforce  A Learning Alberta  Building Vibrant Learning Communities  Alberta Council on Admissions and Transfer

3 Process & Timelines  Phase 1: Develop a PLAR Policy Framework  AET Working Group  Stakeholder Advisory Committee  Timelines: Spring & Summer - initial stakeholder input and development of a draft Policy Framework Fall - Engage in Stakeholder Consultations Winter - Finalize the Policy Framework 2008 – present to government for approval  Phase 2: Advance the Policy Framework as a Cross-Ministry Initiative

4 Overall Goals & Objectives  Support a learner-centred system  Foster a culture in support of prior learning  Increase value of all learning and knowledge  Increase access to lifelong learning  Increase access for untapped learners  Enhance learning and work transitions  Provide strategic policy directions for PLAR

5 Definition of PLAR Process of identifying, assessing, and recognizing credentials, competencies, and knowledge of individuals to facilitate the transfer of skills and knowledge in lifelong learning and work.

6 Key Considerations  Increasing participation & access :  Low advanced education participation rates  Delayed transitions into further learning  ¼ of youth do not complete high school  Over 80,000 working aged adults without high school completion  37% of Albertans have low literacy skills  Educational attainment gaps exist for Aboriginal, rural, people with disabilities, and Albertans from lower-income backgrounds

7 Key Considerations  Targeting learner groups: Aboriginal:  Demographic shifts indicate a young and fast growing Aboriginal youth population  Lower levels of educational attainment and participation rates among Aboriginal Albertans  Distinct barriers related to culture and geography International Immigrants:  Competitive demand for skilled immigrants  20% increase in the number of international immigrants in 2005  Increased demand for ESL and immigrant bridging programs  Recognition of foreign credentials and prior learning of immigrants a key policy issue

8 Key Considerations  Enhancing Workplace Education:  Strong economy drawing some Albertans away from formal learning  Lower levels of employer support for education and training  Large proportion of workplace learning is informal  Need to increase capacity to capture and track formal and informal workplace learning

9 Key Considerations  Ensuring Quality Assurance:  Shift from credentials to competencies  Standardization and mechanisms ensure quality assessments  Common policies for recognition and evaluation  Building support for PLAR within post- secondary institutions and professional regulatory bodies

10 Key Considerations  Increasing Capacity for PLAR & Ensuring Sustainability:  Recognition that PLAR activities require time and resources for community organizations, post- secondary institutions, and employers  Capacity and quality through training and professional development for practitioners  Remove affordability barriers for individuals in accessing PLAR services and resources  Ensuring funding mechanisms do not create barriers to engagement in PLAR

11 Key Considerations  Supporting an Integrated Approach:  Utilization of PLAR in community adult learning, apprenticeship system, post- secondary institutions, industry and employers.  Need to ensure alignment, consistency, and synchronicity across government departments, educational providers and community organizations

12 Key Questions  Do these issues and challenges represent the key priorities for Alberta? What other challenges might be facing Alberta?  In what areas might Alberta experience the greatest benefits from implementing a PLAR policy framework? Where could we have the greatest impact?  What barriers or impediments does Alberta face in implementing a PLAR policy framework?

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