Recognises achievement, through the award of credit for units and qualifications. The implementation of the QCF is already well underway in some sectors. Greater commonality through shared units and a standard unit template. New standardised titles will make it easier to understand and compare. It provides more flexible routes to full qualifications, achievable in smaller steps. A new centralised database, due in late 2010, will help to track credit and provide learners with an online record of their achievements. Qualification purposes will replace ‘types’ for categorising qualifications. Still some uncertainty on funding and development timelines in some sectors.
More flexibility under the QCF Provider Awarding organisation (AO) w credit unit x credit unit y credit unit Credit accumulation - Greater choice and flexibility can support the provider in delivering more tailored courses to meet needs of wider group of learners and employers. Qualification w+x+y+z credits z credit unit
Credit transfer and progression Providers Awarding organisations Level 3 credit Level 3 Qualification Credit transfer - Progression supported by credit being used across levels, sizes (Award, Certificate and Diploma) and sometimes sector areas. Reduces repetition of learning. Level 3 credit Level 2 credit Level 3 credit Level 2 credit
The building blocks Some units will appear in more than one qualification Credit can be transferred between qualifications Rules of combination outline what credit and which units can be used. Many units shared across awarding organisations (AO) Learners can gain credit towards a qualification from more than one AO Many shared units developed in collaboration. The credit value is a measure of average learning time one credit = 10 hours of notional learning Many units will still include guided learning hours (GLH) requirement to evidence GLH for funding purposes only. Units and credit in the QCF Standard unit template Title Learning outcomes Assessment criteria Level Credit value GLH (if applicable)
What makes up a qualification? 1 Rules of combination set out the combination of credit that must be achieved 3 States credit required from mandatory and optional units 2 Designed by AOs with *SSCs/SSBs and only go on QCF when approved by the relevant SSC/SSB 6 Opportunities for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) 4 Credit can come from more than one level 5 Exemptions and equivalents can also be identified * Sector Skills Council (SSC) / Standard Setting Bodies (SSB)
QCF qualifications 1 credit = 10 hours of learning. The learning time is notional and is taken as the estimated number of hours it takes the average learner to complete all the learning outcomes of that unit.
Used to describe subject area New titles and terminology Award Certificate Diploma Entry to level 8 Additional terminology used to describe its use eg prove occupational competence or CPD 3.Content2.SizePurpose?1.Difficulty We already have over 500 qualifications on the QCF with titles including: City & Guilds Level 3 (NVQ) Diploma in Hairdressing City & Guilds Level 3 Certificate in Retail Skills City & Guilds Level 1 Diploma in Retail Skills City & Guilds Level 3/4 Award in Preparing to Teach in the Life Long Learning Sector City & Guilds Entry 3 Certificate in Personal Progression through Employment
Key differences NQFQCF All qualification content defined in terms of unitsManyAll Same units used by different awarding organisationsOnly NVQsYes (unless restricted) Qualifications and units have credit (based on notional learning time) NoYes All units and content defined in the same templateOnly NVQsYes Unit assigned a levelNot alwaysYes Credit accumulationNoYes The credit awarded (or equivalent) is accepted by another Awarding Organisation Only NVQsYes Qualification types/categoriesYesNow purpose Qualification purposesNoYes Qualification title indicates sizeNoYes
Meeting the needs of the industry - the role of the SSCs/SSBs There are 25 SSCs that are led by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES). The SSC’s roles includes: Identifying skills needs Proposing/developing standards, units and qualifications Approving all qualifications in their sector alongside Ofqual Prioritising qualifications for public funding. The Sector Qualification Strategy (SQS) sets the direction and the Action Plan sets out what they would like to be publicly funded. Find your SSC at www.sscalliance.org/SSCs/LinksoSSCs.aspx
Learner records and Unique Learner Numbers 1 Each new QCF learner is set to have a centralised online learner record by the end of 2010. 2 ULNs are the identifier required to facilitate learner and funding records moving forward. 3 Many funding streams already have ULNs as a learner requirement. 4 We have already successfully collected and authenticated nearly 200,000 ULNs from centres. A major element of the centralised IT system for the QCF is the introduction of online learner records. This system will also manage the accumulation and transfer of credit (CAT) across awarding organisations and providers. For more information and guidance check out www.cityandguilds.com/uln
What it really means for you Now Mixed economy of delivery under new and old regulations Lots of redeveloped qualifications delivered in short period New titles and terminology Increased funding volatility Very short turnaround times Need to develop employer and learner understanding In the long run Further funding volatility and uncertainty over funding by credit/units More demand-led system Managing flexible delivery to meet more individual needs Individual unit take-up