Geoff Holden, City & Guilds

Qualification reform
Geoff Holden November 2013
Qualifications 2013
GCSE/A Level
KS4 approved VQs
QCF Vocational qualifications and apprenticeship frameworks
Qualifications 2015
A Levels
L2 Techs?
Apprenticeships- Richard design
L3 Tech Levels
AVQs- employer led- Whitehead
Unit based provision unemployed, upskilling
14-19 qualification features
Whole ‘substantial’ qualifications- not bite sized
QCF no longer viewed as ‘appropriate’
External and synoptic assessment
Graded –P/M/D
14-16 L2 120 glh
16-19 L3 150/300 glh- AGQs/Technical Levels
16-19 L2 – under consultation
Will require public recognition from Professional or
Trade bodies or minimum of 5 employers or 3 HEIs
• Quality assurance model must adapt to 14-19
16-19 qualification features
• ‘Tech Levels’– at Level 3 seen by DfE and BIS as
core vocational option
• Key component of Technical Baccalaureate
(alongside EPQ and Core Maths)
• Graded, external and synoptic assessment
• Employer endorsement
• In England, the occupational standard will be the
same for adult vocational qualifications,
Apprenticeships and Tech Levels
• DfE currently consulting on post-16 Level 2 – similar
cahracteristics expected
City Guilds’ TechBac®
• We are currently developing qualifications in a range
of vocational areas that will be offered at Levels 2
and 3 called City & Guilds Technicals.
• These high-quality vocational qualifications will be
offered at Levels 2 and 3 in six subject areas from
September 2014: engineering, digital technologies,
construction, land, business administration and
• City & Guilds Technicals will form the main part of the
TechBac® programme of study
• Additional subject areas from 2015 include: sport,
health and social care, automotive, health, building
services engineering and hospitality.
City & Guilds TechBac®
Policy Environment
Better careers advice
Vocational pedagogy and up-skilling of teachers/tutors
Valid and reliable assessment
Specialist facilities
What is the City & Guilds TechBac®?
City & Guilds’ TechBac®
A vocational programme of study
Available at Levels 2 (GCSE) and 3 (Advanced) of the qualifications
• A core technical qualification, which includes contextualised maths and English
embedded at the appropriate level;
• An extended project;
• A meaningful work placement;
• The opportunity for learners to develop the cross-functional skills which
underpin an individuals ability to gain employment, and progress within it.
How City & Guilds’ techbac differs from
government performance measure
City & Guilds’ TechBac®
A vocational programme of study
Government’s Technical
Baccalaureate Performance
Available at Levels 2 (GCSE) and 3
(Advanced) of the qualifications
A way to mark achievement among 1619 year olds and used in school league
• A core technical qualification, which
includes contextualised maths and
English embedded at the
appropriate level;
• An extended project;
• A meaningful work placement;
• The opportunity for learners to
develop the cross-functional skills
which underpin an individuals ability
to gain employment, and progress
within it.
Only awarded at Level 3
• a Level 3 Tech Level qualification;
• a Level 3 ‘core’ maths qualification;
• and an extended project
City & Guilds TechBac®
1. ‘Business perspectives’ /
employability skills are seen as
highly valuable
2. Work experience is seen as
3. A balance of knowledge and
practical skills is what employers
want to see in new recruits
4. The ability to apply knowledge to
real world problems was endorsed
5. Employers on the whole supported
creating a highly credible alternative
to academic qualifications
I want to see enthusiasm, personality,
interest in the technical side, some real
world experience and can hold
conversation and will look you in the
- Employer
‘If a young person excelled in a project
linked to my business and thrived in their
work experience placement, I’d employ
them. Who wouldn’t?’
- Employer
“I like it as an employer as it is very
practical and wide ranging but I also
like it for my kids as they aren't
limiting themselves if they decide to
go on to university to get a degree. It
seems to me there are now 2 routes
to get a degree – A levels and this.
- Employer
Post 19 and Apprenticeships- Whitehead- AVQ
reforms and Richard review implementation plan
• Richard review- implementation October 29
• Whitehead report - launched November 14
• Common themes
• Direct employer involvement in development and delivery
• Grading –P/M/D
• Based on high level standard
• Enable progression
• Core and options model
• Linked to Tech Levels
Vocational qualifications valued by
employers and individuals
“For individuals, the aim is that
vocational qualifications will be valued
as a passport into and through a
career; and for employers, the aim is
for vocational qualifications to be a
recognised brand”
Matthew Hancock,
Minister for Skills
Business, Innovation and
“Employers and learners must prize
adult vocational qualifications –
whether or not they are funded by the
Nigel Whitehead, Group Managing Director
Programmes & Support, BAE Systems PLC
and Commissioner, UK Commission for
Employment and skills
Our Findings
• Funding currently drives the market and
distorts supply
• Employers are not currently engaged with the
• Inflexibility and complexity in the current
• Poor preparation for progression
Recommendation One
Tighten the conditions for recognition as an awarding
organisation, including requiring training providers
delivering vocational qualifications to involve
employers locally.
• Awarding organisations involve relevant employers
• AOs require training providers to involve relevant
employers in delivery
• Possibly through industrial partnerships
Recommendation Two
Bring in new design principles for vocational
qualifications, based on high-level, outcome based
standards, with assessment that is fit for purpose and
measures for distance travelled.
• Clear identity to vocational qualifications
• both initial and continuing vocational education
• All vocational qualifications will be based on less
prescribed standards
Recommendation Three
Make the vocational qualification system accountable
by requiring awarding organisations and training
providers to report the impact of their qualifications
back to customers.
• Help employers and individuals choose which training
provider to use
• Help training providers to choose an awarding
• visibility of the impact vocational qualifications have on
progression and business growth
Recommendation Four
Simplify the array of vocational qualifications on offer
and create a single point of access to the different
qualifications databases.
• Information on which vocational qualifications are
• No need to be experts in the technical language of
vocational qualifications
• informed decisions about which qualifications to take
and preferred delivery route
Recommendation Five
Encourage the use of technology in the delivery and
assessment of adult vocational qualifications.
• design and delivery of vocational qualifications has not
kept pace with technology.
• Structural barriers to use of technology removed
o funding
o Inspection
o capability of the teaching profession
Recommendation Six
Encourage more leading employers to work in
partnership to develop relevant, rigorous vocational
• work collaboratively with other employers, trade unions,
providers, and awarding organisations to deliver
vocational qualifications
Richard Review:Overview
Apprenticeships should be redefined:
• the purpose of an Apprenticeship will be to train those
aged 16 and above to achieve the Apprenticeship
standard as set by employers to enable them to perform a
skilled role effectively. It should only be considered an
appropriate path where substantial training is required to
achieve this.
• the government should introduce a separate programme
for employability skills
• training and accreditation of those already fully competent
in their jobs should be delivered separately
Revised apprenticeships
The focus of Apprenticeships should be on the outcome:
• Apprenticeships will be based on standards designed by
employers to meet their needs, the needs of their sector
and the economy more widely. These standards 32will be
short, easy to understand documents that describe the
level of skill, knowledge and competency required to
achieve mastery of a specific occupation and to operate
confidently in the sector.
• An apprentice will need to demonstrate their competence
through rigorous independent assessment, focused
primarily on testing their competence at the end of their
Revised apprenticeships
The testing and validation process should be independent
and genuinely respected by industry:
• the test should be holistic, at the end, and assess
whether the individual is fully competent
• organisations with the right expertise should be
responsible for assessment and making sure
Apprentices are tested consistently
• assessors must be entirely independent, with no
incentive or disincentive related to the outcome
• employers should be directly involved as well as
Revised apprenticeships
• The new standards will be short (typically one side of
A4), easy to understand documents that describe the
level of skill, knowledge and competency required to
undertake a specific occupation well, and to operate
confidently within a sector. They will focus on how an
apprentice should demonstrate mastery of an
occupation, and will not list narrowly defined tasks.
• It is the responsibility of employers, working with
professional bodies and others, to design new
Apprenticeship standards.
• Apprenticeships will be graded - pass, merit and
Revised apprenticeships
Maths & English
• New Apprenticeships, starting with those developed by
Trailblazers, will have a stronger focus on English and
maths. All apprentices working towards new
Apprenticeship standards at Level 2 will have to study
and take the test for Level 2 English and maths, if not
already achieved, ensuring that significant progress is
made towards this level.
• It is our ambition that once the reformed GCSEs are
implemented, all apprentices will use GCSEs rather than
Functional Skills to meet the English and maths
requirements in Apprenticeships.
Revised apprenticeships-assessment
The new Apprenticeship standard will set out what an apprentice
should know and be able to do at the end of the Apprenticeship. The
assessment will cover the whole standard and will therefore need to
test both theoretical and practical elements. This will require mixed
methods of assessment, which may include:
• Written and multiple choice tests;
• Observational elements;
• Practical synoptic assessments;
• A viva to assess theoretical or technical knowledge or discuss
how the apprentice approached the practical assessment and
their reasoning;
• Production of a project, or a portfolio of work; and
• Virtual assessment, such as online tests or video evidence as
appropriate to the content.
Timeline- Apprenticeships
• Trailblazer activity will continue and grow during 2013/14 and 2014/15,
creating new Apprenticeship standards and assessment approaches
in a range of sectors and occupations
• The two academic years 2015/16 and 2016/17 will be the key period
of transition to full implementation of these reforms. During 2015/16,
building on the work of the Trailblazers, we expect employers and
professional bodies to work together to agree standards for all
occupations where they agree that Apprenticeships should be
• We want to focus immediately on the development of new
Apprenticeship standards. Other than where work has already begun
on a new framework, we would therefore encourage organisations to
think forward to the development of new standards rather than
creating frameworks that would become obsolete as the reforms are
Aerospace –This will develop the standard for Aerospace Manufacturing
Automotive – This will develop the standard for Automotive Mechatronics
Maintenance Technician.
Digital Industries –This will develop the standards for Software Development
and Networking.
Electrotechnical –This will develop the standards for Installation Electrician
and Maintenance Electrician.
Energy and Utilities –This will develop the standard for Maintenance
Financial Services –This will develop the standards for Corporate Banking,
Digital Marketing, Compliance and IFA Network Administration.
Food and Drink Manufacturing – This will develop the standard for Food
and Drink Maintenance Engineer.
Life Sciences & Industrial Sciences –This will develop the standards for
Laboratory Technician, Science Manufacturing Technician and Medical
Technology Technician.
Implications-funding consultation
• The employer should be the customer.
• Training providers should receive their funding from employers and
not a public agency
• The employer should co-invest.
• greater incentive to demand relevant, high quality training and
good value.
• The government should not set the price of
• The price of training should be freed from public control and set by
the market
• Funding should be linked to achievement.
• Part payment on completion
Consultation proposals
Direct Payment Model: Businesses register Apprentices and report
claims for government funding through a new online system.
Government funding is then paid directly into their bank account
PAYE Payment Model: Businesses register Apprentices through a
new online system. They then recover government funding through
their PAYE return
Provider Payment Model: Government funding continues to be
paid to training providers, but they can only draw it down when they
have received the employer’s financial contribution towards training
Implications- Employers
• Employers are seen by the Government as critical for the
success of these reforms.
• Employers will become the direct purchasers of
apperenticeship and adult training not our centres
• Evidence of direct employer involvement in the design
and assessment of all vocational qualifications is
expected and, in the case of the new apprenticeship
qualifications, essential.
• The reformed 16-19 level 3 qualifications, endorsed by
and developed with employers, will form the substantive
part of the new 16-19 study programmes
Any Questions?
Thank You