Following consultation with Ofqual we are able to provide further guidance to Centres in relation to the assessment of our qualifications. As you will appreciate, there are a plethora of assessment methods utilised in order to test knowledge and skills to be awarded through our qualifications and we realise that in these unprecedented times, it may be difficult or impossible to complete assessment in the proposed way.

Following consultation with Ofqual we are able to provide further guidance to Centres in relation to the assessment of our qualifications. As you will appreciate, there are a plethora of assessment methods utilised in order to test knowledge and skills to be awarded through our qualifications and we realise that in these unprecedented times, it may be difficult or impossible to complete assessment in the proposed way.

Therefore, at the discretion of the awarding organisation, we will consider the adaptation of assessment methods where the method of assessment can be undertaken by alternative means. The assessment of each learning outcome would still need to remain the same in terms of what is assessed, however the way in which it is assessed could – in theory – be adapted. It would be vitally important however, that the proposed adaptation does not give any learner an advantage over another, or that any learners are disadvantaged by the adaptation.

Whilst there is flexibility in our approach during these difficult and challenging circumstances, we must ensure that fairness to learners is upheld. With this in mind we need to request that any proposed adaptations to an assessment method are submitted and approved by Skills and Education Group Awards prior to being implemented. This will ensure the integrity of the qualification is upheld and your external moderator is aware of any adaptation when the time comes to externally moderate.

Centres who request adaptations which are not approved will be provided with a rationale. To request a Variation to Assessment please complete this short form. We aim to provide a written response to all requests within five working days. If we require further information a member of our team will be in touch.

FAQ’s

Are there any arrangements for the specific qualification I am delivering?

On the 9 April 2020, the Secretary of State for Education wrote a direction to Ofqual regarding the assessment and awarding of Vocational and Technical Qualifications. We are now waiting for further guidance from Ofqual. Once this guidance has been published, we will be in a position to consider our approach for each qualification. We will confirm our approach for each qualification with Ofqual no later than 17 April 2020. We will also provide an update to Centres by email.

Can I still enrol learners onto qualifications and assessments?

Yes, it’s business as usual. Please go ahead and register learners through the Online Registration System (ORS).

Our learners have not completed the assessment for their entire qualification. Can we claim the award of the whole qualifications without the learners finishing, as is happening with GCSEs and A-Levels?

No, Skills and Education Group Awards is regulated by Ofqual, Qualifications Wales and CCEA. All of these regulators have been clear that the approach being taken for General Qualifications (e.g. GCSEs and A-Levels) is not suitable for all qualifications.

Our regulators have asked that where possible, assessment of learners is postponed until a later date. If this cannot be done, then an estimation can be used where mastery is not required. This means that for qualifications with Learning Outcomes and Assessment Criteria, we cannot allow an estimate, as all of the Assessment Criteria must be met (‘mastered’) in order for the qualification to be achieved. If an assessment cannot be postponed and the assessment result cannot be estimated, the assessment method may be varied.

Skills and Education Group Awards is allowing Centres to vary the assessment method they use, so long as this ensures that all Assessment Criteria are met and no learner is unfairly advantaged or disadvantaged. All such requests for variations of assessment must be approved by Skills and Education Group Awards. To submit a Variation to Assessment please complete this form. All applications will receive a response within five working days.

Ofqual’s latest position on vocational and technical qualifications can be found here.

What should I do if I have a moderation visit due?

You do not need to do anything at this stage. We have postponed all face-to-face moderation visits. A member of our team will be in touch to rearrange your moderation, where we can we will accommodate e-moderation’s. We are awaiting further guidance on this matter and hope to provide a further update at the close of this week.

Are we able to extend course end dates?

Yes, we are happy to accommodate this where needed. Please contact a member of our Centre Support Team on 0115 854 1620 who will be happy to assist.

Will there be a delay in receiving certificates?

During this period of time, to allow certification of products to continue, we are moving to an e-certification solution. This will enable us to continue certificating submitted and verified claims whilst avoiding any unnecessary delays. Further information will be available in due course.

Am I able to change my assessment method in light of face-to-face teaching being suspended?

We are currently awaiting further guidance from our regulators. We are hoping to be able provide a further update in the coming days.

Can I still register to become a Centre?

Yes, please contact our Centre Engagement Team on 0115 854 1672. They will be able to help you through the process of becoming a Centre. Our Business Development Team are also happy to meet to discuss your needs. To arrange an online conference call contact us on 0115 854 1620.

Are you still open for business?

Following the latest government guidance, we have taken the decision to close our office. Our Centre Support Team are still available to provide advice and support. To speak to a member of the team please call 0115 854 1620 or email centresupport@skillsedugroup.co.uk.

Following consultation with Ofqual we are able to provide further guidance to Centres in relation to the assessment of our qualifications. As you will appreciate, there are a plethora of assessment methods utilised in order to test knowledge and skills to be awarded through our qualifications and we realise that in these unprecedented times, it may be difficult or impossible to complete assessment in the proposed way.

Therefore, at the discretion of the awarding organisation, we will consider the adaptation of assessment methods where the method of assessment can be undertaken by alternative means. The assessment of each learning outcome would still need to remain the same in terms of what is assessed, however the way in which it is assessed could – in theory – be adapted. It would be vitally important however, that the proposed adaptation does not give any learner an advantage over another, or that any learners are disadvantaged by the adaptation.

Whilst there is flexibility in our approach during these difficult and challenging circumstances, we must ensure that fairness to learners is upheld. With this in mind we need to request that any proposed adaptations to an assessment method are submitted and approved by Skills and Education Group Awards prior to being implemented. This will ensure the integrity of the qualification is upheld and your external moderator is aware of any adaptation when the time comes to externally moderate.

Centres who request adaptations which are not approved will be provided with a rationale. To request a Variation to Assessment please complete this short form. We aim to provide a written response to all requests within five working days. If we require further information a member of our team will be in touch.

FAQ’s

Can I still enrol learners onto qualifications and assessments?

Yes, it’s business as usual. Please go ahead and register learners through the Online Registration System (ORS).

Our learners have not completed the assessment for their entire qualification. Can we claim the award of the whole qualifications without the learners finishing, as is happening with GCSEs and A-Levels?

No, Skills and Education Group Awards is regulated by Ofqual, Qualifications Wales and CCEA. All of these regulators have been clear that the approach being taken for General Qualifications (e.g. GCSEs and A-Levels) is not suitable for all qualifications.

Our regulators have asked that where possible, assessment of learners is postponed until a later date. If this cannot be done, then an estimation can be used where mastery is not required. This means that for qualifications with Learning Outcomes and Assessment Criteria, we cannot allow an estimate, as all of the Assessment Criteria must be met (‘mastered’) in order for the qualification to be achieved. If an assessment cannot be postponed and the assessment result cannot be estimated, the assessment method may be varied.

Skills and Education Group Awards is allowing Centres to vary the assessment method they use, so long as this ensures that all Assessment Criteria are met and no learner is unfairly advantaged or disadvantaged. All such requests for variations of assessment must be approved by Skills and Education Group Awards. To submit a Variation to Assessment please complete this form. All applications will receive a response within five working days.

What should I do if I have a moderation visit due?

You do not need to do anything at this stage. We have postponed all face-to-face moderation visits. A member of our team will be in touch to rearrange your moderation, where we can we will accommodate e-moderation’s. We are awaiting further guidance on this matter and hope to provide a further update at the close of this week.

Are we able to extend course end dates?

Yes, we are happy to accommodate this where needed. Please contact a member of our Centre Support Team on 0115 854 1620 who will be happy to assist.

Will there be a delay in receiving certificates?

During this period of time, to allow certification of products to continue, we are moving to an e-certification solution. This will enable us to continue certificating submitted and verified claims whilst avoiding any unnecessary delays. Further information will be available in due course.

Am I able to change my assessment method in light of face-to-face teaching being suspended?

We are currently awaiting further guidance from our regulators. We are hoping to be able provide a further update in the coming days.

Can I still register to become a Centre?

Yes, please contact our Centre Engagement Team on 0115 854 1672. They will be able to help you through the process of becoming a Centre. Our Business Development Team are also happy to meet to discuss your needs. To arrange an online conference call contact us on 0115 854 1620.

Are you still open for business?

Following the latest government guidance, we have taken the decision to close our office. Our Centre Support Team are still available to provide advice and support. To speak to a member of the team please call 0115 854 1620 or email centresupport@skillsedugroup.co.uk.