RPL (Recognition of prior learning)


The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) launched Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) in 2015. This Scheme was further extended in 2016. The objective of this Skill Certification Scheme was to enable a large number of Indian youth to take up industry-relevant skill training that will help them in securing a better livelihood. A component for assessment and certification of individuals with prior learning experience or skills was also introduced called the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) Scheme. So far, over 13have been RPL certified under PMKVY Scheme


Recognition of Prior Learning commonly known as RPL largely refers to an assessment process used to evaluate a person’s existing skill sets, knowledge and experience gained either by formal, non-formal or informal learning. RPL under Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) 2016-20 primarily has threefold objectives…

  • It aims to align the competencies of the un-regulated workforce of the country to the standardized National Skills Qualification Framework (NSQF),
  • To enhance the employability opportunities of an individual as well as provide alternative routes to higher education and
  • To provide opportunities for reducing inequalities based on privileging certain forms of knowledge over others.



RPL under PMKVY involves a 5-step process

  • Mobilization- Mobilization involves activities related to mobilization of potential candidates who are skilled but uncertified.
  • Counselling and pre-screening- Potential candidates are counselled about PMKVY, what is RPL and how the skill certification will assist them in transforming their life. After counselling, a pre-screening test is conducted to ascertain the job role which matches the prior knowledge and existing skill sets of the potential candidates. Pre-screening test involves collection of supporting documentation/ evidences from the candidates and a candidate self-assessment.
  • Orientation- All candidates are mandatorily provided orientation of 12 hours. This orientation includes 6 hours of domain specific training, 4 hours of training on soft skills and entrepreneurship, and 2 hours on familiarization with the assessment processes and methods. Knowledge gaps identified during the counselling stage are also addressed during the orientation delivery. Candidates may opt to receive
  • Final assessment- Assessment of candidates is conducted by the assessment bodies accredited by the Sector Skill Councils (SSCs). Under PMKVY RPL, the candidate is assessed on both Core as well as Non-Core NOSs [National Occupational Standards (NOS) describe best practices by bringing together performance criteria, knowledge and skills pertaining to a job role. A set of NOSs related to a specific job role is called Qualification Pack (QP). Qualification Pack for every Job Role is pegged at a NSQF Level.] of a Qualification Pack (QP). Core NOSs carry 70% weightage and Non-Core NOSs carry 30% weightage in the total assessment score of the candidate. SSCs may choose to conduct offline as well as online assessment depending upon the characteristic of the sector and availability of online modules.
  • Certification, mark sheet and pay-out distribution to candidates- SSC upon approving the result issues the certificate to successful candidate. Pass percentage in the assessment exam for job roles of NSQF level 1, 2, 3 is 50% and for job roles of NSQF level 4 and above is 70%. A candidate who achieves greater than or equal to the pass percentage for a QP is awarded the PMKVY RPL Certificate, Mark sheet and a candidate pay-out of INR500. A candidate who achieves less than the pass percentage mentioned for a QP, but at least 30% or above of the total score, receives only mark sheet and candidate pay-out of INR500. A candidate who scores less than 30% of the total score, shall receive only the mark sheet and be encouraged to undergo Short Term Training under PMKVY.
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