APEL - Assessment of Prior Experience and/or Learning

An individual may have completed a course recognised by the ABTC as meeting the Knowledge & Understanding requirements for the Animal Behaviour Technician (ABT) or Clinical Animal Behaviourist (CAB), in which case they should apply to their chosen Practitioner Organisation for details of ‘provisional/similar’ membership. However, not everyone will have had the opportunity to undertake formal study in a college/university or may have studied subjects different to those areas covered by the Standards or completed a course that is not yet recognised by the ABTC as meeting the requirements. This is where Assessment of Prior Experience and/or Learning (APEL) comes into the equation.

APEL is learning gained outside of a formal course: through work roles, or other activities such as volunteer work, unassessed CPD eg webinars, reading, conference attendance etc.

For Animal Trainer (AT) and Animal Training Instructor (ATI) roles the Practitioner Organisations carry out assessments of both Performance Criteria and Knowledge & Understanding – which means that the APEL process is not required. 

For Animal Behaviour Technician (ABT) and Clinical Animal Behaviourist (CAB) roles the Practitioner Organisations carry out assessments of Performance Criteria; for assessment of Knowledge and Understanding, the ABTC provides a pool of Assessors to carry out the APEL process.

If you would like to apply for APEL assessment of your Knowledge and Understanding for the role of  ABT or CAB please contact the organisation you are interested in joining and they will explain the procedure.  Please look at this page for a list of ABTC Practitioner Organisations with links to their websites. You will see ABT or CAB beside the organisations that are able to add Practitioners in these roles, to those ABTC Registers.

Please be aware that there is a fee of £120 for APEL Assessment by ABTC Assessors and the Practitioner Organisation may need to add an administration fee to this. 

For more details on the APEL process please see The Animal Behaviour and Training Council Guidelines for the Assessment of Prior Experience and Learning

To apply for APEL you need to complete Reflective Account forms to show where you have gained the various Knowledge and Understanding required.  You can find exemplars of these for CAB Candidate A, Candidate B, Candidate C, and  Candidate E.

ABTC Practitioner Organisation APBC recently held a Q and A session about the APEL process.  If you would like to watch it, you can find it here

For details of all the ABTC role standards, please look here.