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Education sector agrees on credit recognition

Education sector agrees on credit recognition and transfer policy

Tertiary learners can be assured that if they move from one place of learning to another, or one course to another, what they’ve achieved will not be lost, under a new credit transfer policy announced today.

Associate Education (Tertiary Education) Minister Steve Maharey has welcomed sector agreement on the Supporting Learning Pathways Credit Recognition and Transfer Policy that focuses on supporting the learner.

“We want to make sure that students who change the direction of their learning, from one education provider to another to another or towards a different qualification, have every opportunity to have their previous achievements recognised. It makes no sense for people to have to study and be assessed again in areas where they have already gained qualifications credits,” said Steve Maharey.

“Credit recognition and credit transfer are not new concepts, but they are increasingly important in a coherent tertiary education sector. We needed a set of principles that all providers would buy into to provide consistency and surety for students,” Mr Maharey said.

“Providers have agreed to have consistent credit recognition and credit transfer process in place from January 2004. So from next year students should start to benefit,” Mr Maharey said.

Credit transfer is a process whereby credit already achieved for one qualification is recognised towards a new qualification. This may occur on a case-by-case basis between providers/qualifications developers and individuals or as a structured agreement between providers.

The policy is supported by the New Zealand Register of Quality Assured Qualifications (the Register), which will be online in July this year. The Register will enable the public to view and compare all qualifications that have been quality assured in New Zealand.

“The Register introduces a common credit currency for New Zealand qualifications. This credit currency provides us with the basis for consistent credit transfer systems within New Zealand. We lead the world in these areas and we are very well prepared to participate in international benchmarking projects,” Mr Maharey said.

The credit transfer policy was developed by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority, working with a group from across the tertiary sector, including universities, polytechnics, wananga, student associations, and private training establishments.

The policy will be implemented by the relevant quality assurance bodies as part of their approval, accreditation and quality assurance roles.

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