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CAVA, D Units, A1, TAQA?

With so many different websites talking about Assessor Training it can often get very confusing as to which course is the right one for you. One of the main reasons for this is that too many pages do not get updated frequently enough, so the information is old and out of date. Fear not though, Brooks and Kirk are here to clear your mind of any confusion. We’re going to take you through all of the assessor qualifications that have existed to date.

It all began with the…


D32: Assess candidate performance
This unit covered: assessment planning; judging both performance and knowledge; making assessment decisions and providing feedback. The assessment skills that learners needed to demonstrate included the assessment of natural performance, simulation and questioning.

D33: Assess candidate using different sources of evidence.
This unit covered everything that is included within the D22 unit plus more. When it came to assessing candidates, the trainee assessors were required to demonstrate all of the following assessment methods: assessment of natural performance, simulation, questioning, candidate and peer reports, projects and assignments and assessment of prior achievement and learning.

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The D32/D33 Units were the first assessor qualifications. They ceased to exist many years ago and were replaced with the…

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A1 Award

Assessing Candidates Using a Range of Methods
The A1 Award was a single unit divided into four parts and was for anybody who was involved with assessing learners taking National Vocational Qualifications, a programme of training in skills, techniques and principles of assessing competency using a variety of assessment methods.

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Then came along December 2010, when the A1 Award was replaced with a new qualification…

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Level 3 Certificate in Assessing Vocational Achievement

The L3 Certificate in Assessing Vocational Achievement (CAVA) forms part of the latest suite of Assessor Qualifications. The CAVA is the only qualification that will qualify you to the same level as the A1 Award. It has three units:

Unit 1 – Understanding the principles and practices of assessment
Unit 2 – Assess occupational competence in the work environment
Unit 3 – Assess vocational skills,knowledge and understanding

So that’s it a brief history of Assessor Training qualifications.

“Wait a minute!” I hear you say, “you’ve missed off TAQA.”

The reason for that is simple. TAQA is not an assessor qualification! TAQA (Training, Assessment and Quality Assurance) is used by various awarding bodies, including City and Guilds, to cover all of the assessing and quality assurance qualifications. So, CAVA forms part of TAQA. Notice we say assessing qualifications because CAVA isn’t the only assessor qualification under the TAQA umbrella. It is, however, the most highly regarded assessor qualification and it is effectively the equivalent of the old A1 award. You can find out more about the rest of the qualifications on our Assessor Qualifications page.

If you are still struggling to get your head around this whole TAQA thing, the easiest way to get to grips with this is to just think about the Business Skills suite of qualifications. Within Business Skills, you would have the likes of business administration, customer service, team leading, etc. If you wanted to do an NVQ in Customer Service for example, you wouldn’t be looking for ‘The Business Skills course’. Instead, you would be looking for something like ‘NVQ courses in Customer Service’. So next time when you see training companies or job vacancies talking about ‘The TAQA Course’, just remember, the likelihood is that they are in fact referring to the CAVA.

If you are still a little bit confused, then not to worry! Just get in touch and we will make sure that it all becomes clear. You can give us a call on 01205 805 155 or send an email to