On behalf of the Swedish Council for Higher Education (UHR), the Royal Institute of Technology together with Chalmers University of Technology and the University of Borås have developed a model to validate prior learning for engineering field of education. If you lack formal eligbility (competence) today to begin an engineering degree, an assessment and formal recognition of your prior learning can enable you to fullfill the eligibility and perhaps shorten your studies.
Prior learning – Validation in engineering programmes
If you lack the formal qualifications to start an engineering programme, you can have your prior learning assessed in order to still begin or shorten your studies.
Prior learning is a term for your overall expertise, regardless of whether you have formal proof of this expertise or not. It can include experience and knowledge from working life, staff training, non-profit association work and parenthood. It can include knowledge from formal, informal and non-formal learning.
The validation process includes a structured assessment, evaluation, documentation and recognition of the knowledge and expertise that you have, regardless of how you have acquired them.
Would you like to have your prior learning assessed?
Contact Chalmers study guidance counselor for support and guidance in this process.
To contact a Student guidance counsellor
Qualified for programme through prior learning
If you lack formal qualifications to begin an engineering programme but feel that you have the ability to handle the studies, you can apply to have your prior learning validated to correspond to the basic and/or special entry requirements.
You might be eligible if you:
- Have extensive professional experience
- Have unfinished studies combined with professional experience
- Post-secondary vocational education and training combined with professional experience
The higher education institution assesses your prior knowledge by evaluating your expertise based on the intended learning outcomes of the programme in question. This means that the school will determine if you have the knowledge needed to complete the education.
Shorten the programme by having prior learning credited
If you feel that you have knowledge from prior learning which corresponds to parts of a programme, you can have this knowledge validated in order to shorten your programme. You can apply to have prior learning credited once you have been admitted to the programme.
The validation entails the prior learning being compared to the programme’s courses, contents, and intended learning outcomes. The assessment is made by an expert in each respective course.
The assessment can lead to you qualifying to apply for a later part of a programme, but this requires the validation to correspond to at least 35 credits in the first two years of the programme. The validation can also lead to you being credited certain modules in the programme.
Advance decision regarding crediting of later parts through prior learning
An application for crediting can only be made once the applicant has been admitted and registered at a programme, but applicants with prior learning can apply for an advance decision. The advance decision is a preliminary assessment of the value of the prior learning and can lead to crediting once the applicant has been admitted and registered at the programme.
The Validation Process
1. Initial meeting – The supervisor invites the applicant to an information and guidance meeting (Skype/telephone or physical meeting)
The conversation results in:
a) The matter being closed.
b) The applicant being given a basis for self-assessment and the task of submitting documents to verify their prior learning.
2. Documents are submitted – The applicant is responsible for submitting documents that describe and verify their prior knowledge (grades, licences, certificates, tests
from work life or training programmes) to the project supervisor.
Self-assessment – The applicant is responsible for carrying out a self-assessment based on the documentation that they received from the supervisor. If it is a matter of validation for admission, the applicant will receive documentation relating to the subject(s) that the validation concerns. If the validation instead concerns credit transfer, the applicant will receive self-assessment documentation relating to the field. The applicant is responsible for returning the completed self-assessment to the supervisor.
3. Survey – The supervisor carries out the survey in consultation with the involved evaluators based on the received documentation and self-assessment.
The survey for admission results in:
a) The matter being closed. The applicant receives a decision of admission/rejection and the matter is documented and registered.
b) The applicant being asked to give further proof of their competence.
The survey for credit transfer results in:
a) The matter being closed. The applicant is considered not to have a sufficient basis for continuing on to the next step. Feedback/guidance for the applicant.
b) The applicant being asked to submit further proof of their subject knowledge.
4. Knowledge inventory – The applicant receives more advanced documentation for a knowledge inventory from the supervisor. In the case of validation for admission, the applicant will receive documentation for a knowledge inventory relating to the subject(s) that the validation concerns. If the validation instead concerns a credit transfer, the applicant will receive documentation for a knowledge inventory relating to the field. The applicant is responsible for returning the completed knowledge inventory to the supervisor.
5. Assessment – The evaluator/assessment group makes an assessment of the level of the received knowledge inventory.
Decision – The basis for a decision regarding the applicant is formulated by the evaluator/assessment group and given to the supervisor. An applicant who has received a positive decision on validation for admission or credit transfer may begin their studies.
6. Closing meeting – The supervisor calls the applicant to a closing meeting to inform the applicant of the result and to offer guidance and information regarding support in their continued study planning.
Registration, Documentation – The matter is closed and documented/registered by the supervisor.
Higher education institutions and programmes
If you want a validation towards education/programmes offered by the Royal Insitute of Technology (KTH) or University of Borås, please contact the insitution.
If you have questions related to the planning of your studies, you can
contact a Student guidance counsellor.