What is the International Big Picture Learning Credential?

What is the International Big Picture Learning Credential?


The International Big Picture Learning Credential is a new, personalised form of assessment. It evaluates and recognises the capacities, experiences and qualities of secondary school graduates from diverse cultures and backgrounds more comprehensively than exam-based certification systems.

The impetus is to put the ‘person’ back into educational assessment so that young people exiting schooling do so with a rich, customised portrait of their abilities that offers meaningful, accessible information to end-users in the wider community, while allowing students significant agency in the way they are represented.

As no two Big Picture students have the same interest-based learning pathway, a personalised approach to final-year assessment is required to provide a fair and balanced assessment that adequately portrays a student’s distinctive learning, achievement, competencies and potential.

Unlike other forms of assessment, no attempt is made to rank or scale students against each other. Their achievements are judged on demonstrations and observations of performance throughout their schooling against six specially constructed assessment frames in the areas of: Knowing how to learn, Empirical reasoning, Quantitative reasoning, Social reasoning, Communication and Personal qualities (for further details on these frames click the petals on the diagram above.)

Student final year results are presented in a Learner Profile that is a showcase of a graduate’s attainments, backed up by evidence of their work that students curate in a interactive online portfolio. The Learner Profile is personalised and designed to reflect the richness of students’ real-world experiences, personal qualities and academic results.

A new Credential for entry to tertiary education


The International Big Picture Learning Credential was designed in partnership with the Assessment Research Centre at the University of Melbourne with the intent of providing a rich, personalised “passport” to further study and work.

The assessment frames were statistically and pschometrically validated through a thorough test phase involving sample and live data. Evidence supporting teacher judgment for each student is stored securely on-line and regular moderation and adjustment is built into the assessment process.

In our initial year of issuing Credentials (2020), 18 Universities in Australia signed on to accept students to their preferred full degree programs based on their Big Picture Learning Credential alone. For context, this is over 40% of the universities in Australia.

As the Big Picture Credential shows personal achievement through learning dispositions and real world experience rather than a rank or localised curriculum outcomes, it is applicable to a wide range of cultural contexts.

The Credential is already being accepted at select tertiary institutions outside Australia and we look forward to building more partnerships with tertiary institutions around the world.


Australian universities that we currently have partnerships with include: 

Australian National University

Avondale University

Charles Sturt University

Flinders University

La Trobe University

Murdoch University


Southern Cross University

Swinburne University

University of Canberra

University of New England

University of Newcastle

University of Tasmania

University of Technology Sydney

University of Wollongong

Victoria University

Western Sydney University