WOU hosted a 21-member delegation, comprising senior officials of various quality agencies, higher education authorities and community colleges/institutes from 12 countries in the Pacific islands, at the main campus today.
He stated that APEL (A) for admission and APEL (C) for credit transfer have already been successfully implemented in Malaysia, while APEL (Q) that focuses on awarding academic qualifications without subjecting students to the entire duration of studies has yet to commence.
Dr Liew said that APEL (A) certification is centrally controlled by MQA while the processing of credit transfers under APEL (C) is managed at the institutional levels.
During Q&A, MQA Senior Director of Accreditation, Lilian Kek Siew Yick, who was present, responded that institutions can embed traditional and cultural learning elements as part of their APEL assessment tools.
UNESCO’s Townsend, in thanking WOU, said, “The take away is that we must be focused on what’s best for the learner. In the Pacific, we want to move forward and engage our learners.”
Separately in an interview, she said, “APEL is of importance to the Pacific at the moment. But don’t make the system become so bureaucratic that it overtakes the need of the learner.”
She declared that she will be discussing with the team in Bangkok in a few days’ time to work out what UNESCO can do next, going forward, for the participants. “We will do a complete evaluation to find out how confident the participants feel to take things forward themselves, and then where would they like further support. So it will be those areas of further support that we will try to arrange to put into place and then we will monitor. It’s about what UNESCO can contribute based on what countries need and our strengths.”