Category A Qualifications 6 July 2021
Qualifications which are in category A are those where there is a 'licence to practice' element to the qualification or where the qualification is showing that a learner is competent. It is not possible to award these qualifications without being able to establish that the learner can demonstrate safe, reliable, and valid knowledge, skills and behaviours or occupational skills.
This category also allows for qualifications where the learner is entering primarily into employment and not using it for progression in education.
The spreadsheet listing all qualifications can be downloaded here (revised 1 April).
What does being in Category A mean?
This means that learners registered on these qualifications will not be eligible for Teacher Assessed Grades (TAGs) for incomplete assessments and must be able to evidence the qualification as being completed in full.
The qualification is still eligible to have the learner assessments adapted to accommodate the restrictions implemented by covid-19. This might be a change in the type of assessment or allowing simulation instead of work-based role play however the full content of the assessment must be completed and achieved as per the normal expectations.
Centres can choose whether to continue as usual, delay learners' completion, or apply an adapted assessment. Centres may also decide to review chosen optional components and change these for others within the rules of combination. Centres must complete AIM's course amendment form and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org so that the e-RAC is updated with the correct components, there is no charge for this.
This group is effectively continuing with what was the EERF regulations and approach that was implemented by Ofqual in Autumn 2020.
The adaptations that were originally available in the qualification handbooks in Autumn 2020 are currently being updated to reflect the latest guidance. These will no longer be available in the qualification handbooks but will be moved to be in the COVID subject specific page for category A which is a subpage to this section.
Where there is an external assessment due to take place, any further adaptations will be available in the COVID subject pages.
Centres should continue with their delivery and assessment plans for learners on these qualifications and claim non-examined assessments as usual using the eRACs and presenting to the External Verifier or Approved Internal Verifier (for those with DCS) for certification.
Centres should ensure that any changes to the planned assessments (or changes to component choices) are signed off by an internal verifier in advance of using the assessments and a record of this kept with quality documents.
How will I know if my learners are eligible?
This applies to any learners who are registered on qualifications and due to sit an assessment on these qualifications between 1 August 2020 and 31 August 2021.
As category A are full evidence claims, the external verification or approved internal verification (AIV) process for direct claims status should continue as usual.
There are no changes to the format, dates or timescales for the release of results. All quality assurance for these continue with external verification, invigilation/checks and Direct Claims Status claims.
Appeals, Complaints, Special Considerations, Reasonable Adjustments and Recognition of Prior Learning
All of these policies continue to be applicable and have not been adapted for COVID-19. Please refer to centre handbooks and forms to access these.