One of the questions we get asked most often at Brooks and Kirk is ‘How do I become an NVQ Assessor?’
The answer is probably not as complicated as you think! You simply need to meet two requirements to become an NVQ assessor:
- You must demonstrate something called ‘occupational competence’
- and you must have completed the CAVA qualification.
That’s it! It’s not a complex process, but some people who are new to assessment might find themselves a little confused over what we mean by occupational competence, or struggle to wade through the range of assessment courses on offer. Undoubtedly, all you need to know is that CAVA is the only course that makes you a fully qualified Assessor.
In the rest of this article, we’ll go through these two components in a little more detail to make sure you’re left with no grey areas.
Become qualified through CAVA
Firstly, nobody can become an assessor without being qualified in some way through the official framework of assessment qualifications (TAQA). The course we’ll be focusing on in this article is the CAVA course; which is the only qualification that will lead to you becoming a fully qualified NVQ Assessor.
What’s involved in the CAVA course?
CAVA stands for Level 3 Certificate in Assessing Vocational Achievement. Although, you may also come across references to the D32 and D33 awards or the A1 and A2 awards. These are predecessors to the CAVA course. In 2010, CAVA was introduced. At this time, it’s the course you need to take to become a fully qualified NVQ Assessor.
When you undertake the CAVA course, you’ll cover the three criteria that are essential to the assessment process:
Unit 1: Understanding the Principles and Practices of Assessment
Unit 2: Assess Occupational Competence in the Work Environment
and Unit 3: Assess Vocational Skills, Knowledge and Understanding
In short, you’ll learn the principles and practices behind the assessment process, and then learn how to assess both within a workplace and classroom environment.
What you need to be eligible to enrol in a CAVA course
To be eligible to enrol in a CAVA course, there is only one thing you need to be able to do. Demonstrate occupational competence.
Hmm… That’s the second time you’ve used that phrase, but what does it mean?
In the simplest terms, if you can demonstrate occupational competence, you can show you have sufficient knowledge and understanding of your industry to be able to judge whether someone else is doing the job well.
Not so hard, right? But what exactly makes my knowledge ‘sufficient’?
That’s a good question and one that can be hard to answer as different employers and training providers can interpret the ‘occupational competence’ criteria differently. However, in general, there are two ways you can demonstrate that you have sufficient knowledge and skill to train as an assessor.
1) Work experience
This is by far the most highly regarded form of occupational competence you can demonstrate. Two years of work experience in your field (and at the right level) is generally considered sufficient to demonstrate occupational competence, although it’s always worth checking whether your training provider or employer is looking for a longer work history.
2) Vocational qualifications
Vocational qualifications describe any type of accredited training you’ve done to get to where you are. For example, NVQs, BTECs, or relevant diplomas.
Generally, a Level 3 qualification is considered the right level to demonstrate occupational competence – but not always! Some training providers and employers will accept lower levels of vocational qualification or even none at all if you’ve got the right work experience.
To sum it all up
You’ve read the long version; now here’s the whole thing in a nutshell!
To become an assessor, you need to:
- Already have a high level of occupational competence, i.e. two years of work experience in the industry and/or a Level 3 vocational qualification
- Complete a CAVA course to become a fully qualified Assessor.
Remember, the eligibility criteria to take the CAVA course can vary depending on how the institution interprets ‘occupational competence’, so always check what’s needed from you before applying.
Get in touch with Brooks and Kirk
If you’re starting to get excited, knowing you’re only a stone’s throw away from becoming a qualified assessor, then get in touch today and let us help you go the last mile. We’re expert assessor training providers who’ve been delivering assessor training for over 20 years! We can offer expert advice no matter what your industry or career goals.