New Year, New Career

New Year, New Career


Unsurprisingly, the turn of the new year is the most common time of year for career changes. If you fall into the ‘1 in 3’ category then you may be interested in training to become an NVQ assessor. 

Why do people choose to change careers to become NVQ assessors?

There are so many reasons for why people choose to change career and retrain as an assessor. In fact, there are so many that we did a post talking about the main reasons why people become assessors. So we won’t repeat ourselves. But what we will say, is that if you are looking for a more flexible career that involves working closely with other people and using your experience to help them to achieve their aspirations, then this is the career for you.

There is currently a huge demand for assessors due to the increasing focus on vocational training, which is why there are more and more people are changing careers to become NVQ assessors every day.  

If the world of assessing is new to you, then you will probably have a whole heap of questions. That is exactly the reason we made our NVQ Assessor FAQ page. Hopefully this should answer most, if not all of the questions you may have. Alternatively, you can either give us a call and we will be more than happy to talk you through what’s involved with becoming an assessor, or you can request a callback below by filling in your details below and we will give you a call within one working day. 

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Something you will not want to miss out on!


It’s free and it’s unique. It’s… 

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That there, is the countdown to when we will reveal what it is that we have up our sleeves. Not that we’re trying to build up the tension at all.

We can absolutely guarantee you three things. These are: 

  • It’s free
  • You won’t find another assessor training provider in the whole of England offering it
  • Finally, if you’re looking to become an assessor, you will want it!

There’s no need to keep checking our website for when it’s announced. Instead, you can just sign up to our monthly newsletter and you will be sent an email the second it is launched. If you have already subscribed to our Monthly Newsletter, then you can sit back, have a cup of tea and wait for the email to arrive.


The whole picture will become clearer in…

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Please submit your email to be added to our NVQ Assessor Monthly Newsletter.

1 Year, 34 Posts and over 300 trainee assessors!

1 Year, 34 Posts and over 300 trainee assessors!

Assessor Training Posts

It’s been just over a year since we set up our own dedicated assessor training website. Well, 1 year, 2 weeks and 6 days to be precise! To mark the beginning of a new academic year, we thought we would reflect on a whole year’s worth of articles in one post. For anyone who is currently training to become an assessor, or looking at beginning their training to become an assessor, you may find that a few of our posts could be worth a read.

Whether you would like to make sure that you are choosing the right assessor qualification, find out what all the confusing acronyms are about in assessor job vacancies or if you are just curious about what a career as an NVQ assessor might entail, we have a post that was published with you in mind. 

We have cherry picked some of the most interesting (in our minds) and most useful posts from the 14/15 academic year. Happy reading!


Free PTLLS16/10/2014

The New PTLLS Qualification for FREE!

At this point, it was only a month ago since the old PTLLS award had been completely taken over by the Level 3 Award in Education and Training. We have been offering the level 3 tutor training qualification for free as part of our assessor courses ever since. 

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Assessor Training Technology11/11/2014

What is TEA and why is it important to me?

Yes, cups of tea are very important in a working day. But, that wasn’t the tea we were referring to here. Technology Enhanced Assessment (TEA) is extremely important within the modern day role of an NVQ assessor. Which is why we thought it would be very handy for our current and perspective trainee assessors to be aware of what it is, so that they could be ahead of the game. 

Read More


linked newly qualified assessors04/12/2014

The importance of LinkedIn to newly trained Assessors

If you know what LinkedIn is already, then you will probably already know why it is so important that all newly trained NVQ assessors get themselves on there. If you don’t know what LinkedIn is, then it’s a good job we did this post for you to find out what it is and get yourself on there.

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matrix accreditation11/12/2014

Matrix Accreditation

Early December last year we were accredited with the Matrix standard. For anyone who is new to the world of teaching and training, Matrix accreditation will probably be completely alien to you. Find out why it’s reassuring to know that Brooks and Kirk have received Matrix accreditation. 

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Assessor shadowing wordcloud


Inexperienced Assessors Gaining Experience

“How am I supposed to gain experience in assessing, when so many assessor vacancies are asking for ‘experienced’ assessors?” We have been asked this question on many occasions, so we thought we would make anyone new to the sector aware of what shadowing an assessor involves.

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Mid-April saw us introduce the CertSelfie. We are still asking every learner to send in their CertSelfie once they have finished their training. If you have trained with us and not sent us in a selfie of you with your certificate, find out what you are missing out on!

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Make sure you choose the right assessor qualification

Very few people are aware of the name of the most current assessor qualifications. Even fewer are aware of which one it is that they need in order to become a fully qualified NVQ assessor. Because of this, we thought we would do this post to make sure that everyone is aware of which course it is that they need to do.

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24+ advanced learning loan25/06/2015

Tell me more about the 24+ Loan…

There were very few people that had heard about the 24+ Advanced Learning Loan before they called us up or stumbled across it on our website. We thought maybe a quick question and answer post would help to give people interested in funding their assessor training a better idea of exactly what the loan involves.

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In-house assessing for your organisation

What have Dental nurse practices, Care homes, Construction companies and even Restaurants all got in common? They all use in-house assessors! If in-house assessing is new to you, we wrote this post with you in mind. 

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A1 TAQA D32 D322 Assessor Qualification20/08/2015

Making Sense of NVQ Assessor Job Vacancies

If you have only just started looking at becoming an assessor then you wouldn’t be the first person to find it incredibly difficult to work out exactly what it is that you need in order to become a fully qualified assessor. That is why we thought we would clear any confusion by explaining it in black and white.

Read More


And that bring us to where we are today! Whilst we like to think that we have probably answered any questions that you may have had in one of our posts over the last year, it will probably be quicker to just give us a call and have a chat with a member of our team. 

contact details.fw



NVQ Assessor FAQ (2019 Update)

NVQ Assessor FAQ (2019 Update)

If there’s one thing that over 20 years’ experience in the Further Education (FE) industry teaches you, it is that nothing ever appears to be simple in FE. So, if you have been trying to find out what you need to become an assessor, but you just can’t make heads or tails of what information is out there, no worries. We have put together a page just for you. Using research from literally thousands of enquiries and our extensive industry-knowledge, we have put together a comprehensive list of Frequently Asked Questions. Whether you just want to know how to become an assessor or what all of these acronyms are that you have heard about, our FAQ should help. 

NVQ Assessor FAQ

Save the scrolls and skip straight to your question:

How do I Become an Assessor?

Generally speaking, in order to become an assessor, you need two things. These are; occupational competence and the appropriate assessor qualification.

Occupational competence is basically the ‘knowing your stuff’ part. You need to have a good amount of experience working in the occupation for which you want to assess learners in. When it comes to applying for assessor jobs, you will be asked to show evidence of your occupational competence as well. So, you can use prior qualifications and experience of working in relevant job roles as evidence for this. 

Then there is the assessor qualification. If you don’t already hold an accredited assessor qualification, you will need to attain one. The most highly regarded assessor qualification is the Level 3 Certificate in Assessing Vocational Achievement (CAVA). This will not only qualify you to assess learners in any learning environment, but it will also qualify you to assess their occupational competence in the workplace. Upon completion of this course and providing you have sufficient occupational competence, you would be qualified to assess learners completing NVQs and Apprenticeships.

What does an NVQ Assessor do?

As an NVQ Assessor, you would be responsible for supporting and guiding learners through their vocational qualifications. You would collect various different types of evidence from your learners to meet all of the learning outcomes from within their qualifications.

Here’s an idea of the kind of tasks which you would be expected to perform as an NVQ assessor:

  • Plan and deliver NVQ training programmes and workshops;
  • Observe candidates’ competency in their workplace;
  • Examine candidates’ portfolios of evidence;
  • Question candidates about how they would deal with non-standard situations;
  • Provide feedback and offer advice if the standards are not met;
  • Sign off the NVQ when all the requirements have been met;
  • Keep records of candidates’ progress, according to the requirements of the NVQ awarding bodies;
  • Attend standardisation meetings with other assessors;
  • Work closely with training staff and candidates’ line managers.

How does the CAVA compare to the A1, D32/33 or TAQA?

For those of you that have already done a bit of digging into assessor training before arriving here, you may have seen all sorts of acronyms being thrown around! We have designed a page with exactly you in mind if that is the case. 

If you would like a really short and concise explanation; the CAVA is the ‘top dog’ assessor qualification (I suppose you could say). It forms part of the latest suite of assessor qualifications (often referred to as TAQA) which replaced the A1 Award back in 2010. But before the A1, there was the D32/33. The D units were the first accredited assessor qualifications.

Useful pages relating to this question:

What is TAQA?

TAQA stands for Training, Assessment and Quality Assurance. It is the name for the current suite of Assessor and Internal Quality Assurance qualifications. So, ‘TAQA’ is not ‘a qualification’; it is instead, an umbrella term that covers a branch of qualifications. 

We are aware of how confusing this particular term can be for people. Simply because there are so many assessor job vacancies that just refer to ‘a TAQA’ or ‘the TAQA’. Which to all intents and purposes, makes it sound like it should be a qualification. However, as you now know, it isn’t.

Useful pages relating to this question:

Are the old D32/D33 and A1/A2 qualifications still valid?

In short, yes. HOWEVER, this is dependent on a couple of things. Firstly, you need to have been working in a suitable job role which has involved assessing and/or training. Secondly, you absolutely have to have an up to date Continuing Professional Development record. Ideally, part of your CPD should have involved you achieving the knowledge-based unit from the most up to date assessor qualifications (UPPA). 

If you have been out of assessing for a while, then we would certainly recommend completing the most suitable assessor course from the latest suite of assessor qualifications. Have a look at our Assessor Qualifications page to find out what the most suitable qualification will be for you. 

What Level would I be Qualified to Assess up to?

The answer to this question will depend on a few different factors. It will depend on your previous qualifications, your previous experience, the requirements set out by the awarding organisation for the qualifications you want to assess and your employer’s policies.

That is why this is such a tricky question to answer. However, for wanting of a simple answer; you will be able to assess up to whatever level you can evidence occupational competence for. For example, if you have been working in a certain industry for over 7 years and you have got a Level 3 NVQ in that occupation, you will be able to assess up to level 3 in your area of expertise. However, it’s not always that straightforward. The linked page below should provide you with a more thorough understanding. 

Useful pages relating to this question:

What are the job prospects like for Assessors?

Obviously, the demand for assessors varies based on which industry it is that you are looking at assessing in and where it is that you are based. Nevertheless, there tends to be a quite a good demand for assessors, particularly in the following industries: Health and Social Care, Childcare, Business services (Business Admin, Customer Service, Team Leading etc.), Construction and Hair & Beauty. The thing is, where there are apprenticeships and vocational qualifications, there are assessors needed. So, it is just about making sure that you have the suitable qualifications and experience and know the right places to look for these jobs. 

Useful pages relating to this question: 

What does the Assessor course involve?

As you will have seen if you have already visited our Assessor Qualifications page, there are in fact four current assessor qualifications. So, obviously it would depend on which qualification you choose when it comes to finding out what the course involves.

Regardless of which qualification you choose you will either a cover a combination, or all of the units below. 

  • 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

Essentially, Unit 1 is the theory based unit and units 2 and 3 involve assessing two candidates. Unit 2 requires you, as the trainee assessor, to assess 2 candidates in the workplace. Whereas, Unit 3 involves you assessing 2 candidates in a learning environment, like via a Virtual Learning Environment for example. You will find that the vast majority of assessor training providers will require you to have access to the learners to assess. However, there are a select few (including ourselves), that can provide you with access to the learners to assess.

Useful pages relating to this question:

What’s the Difference Between the 4 Assessor Qualifications?

To explain the difference between the four assessor qualifications, it might help to know what each one is called and which units they cover. To make it as simple as possible, we have listed each qualification title, what the course is known as and a brief explanation of who each course is for. 

Level 3 Certificate in Assessing Vocational Achievement


Units: 1, 2 & 3

Summary: The CAVA would qualify you to carry out all types of assessments. It qualifies you to carry out vocationally related assessments in learning environments (like classrooms, simulations and online learning systems). But in addition to that, it also qualifies you to assess the competency of learners within their workplace. 

Ideal for: Anyone looking to become an NVQ Assessor as a career change. 

Level 3 Award in Assessing Competence in a Work Environment


Units: 1 & 2

Summary: This qualification is suitable for those that only need to be able to assess learner’s in their work environment. 

Ideal for: Anyone who works for a company that wants to be able to do in-house assessments on employees completing vocational qualifications; reducing the requirement for external assessors. 

Level 3 Award in Assessing Vocationally Related Achievement


Units: 1 & 3

Summary: You can probably tell what’s coming here already… The AVRA only qualifies you to be able to assess in learning environments. Just to clarify, would not be able to carry out competency-based assessments in the workplace with this qualification. 

Ideal for: Anyone that wants to deliver classroom-based/online vocational qualifications (like knowledge-based BTEC courses).

Level 3 Award in Understanding the Principles and Practices of Assessment


Unit: 1

Summary: The UPPA is a single-unit knowledge-based qualification. It would only provide you with the theory behind the principles and practices of assessment. So, this assessor award on its own, would not qualify you to carry out any assessments. 

Ideal for: Anyone who has previously completed an assessor qualification. The UPPA provides previously-qualified assessors with the knowledge that they need to bring themselves up to speed with the current standard. 

Useful pages relating to this question:

Which Assessor Qualification is Suitable for my Industry?

All of them! Whether you are experienced in Plumbing, Social Care, Hairdressing, Hospitality or Dog Grooming for that matter, it’s the same qualification you need to become an assessor. This may come as a surprise, but the assessor qualifications are industry standard qualifications.

You could think of it like this; you can get an NVQ level 3 in Management. That qualification would qualify you for a management role within your industry; whatever industry that may be. Likewise, the assessor qualification could be referred to as an NVQ Level 3 in Assessing. Because the assessment processes and practices are the same across all industries, it’s the same qualification you would need.  

We hope this has helped!

However, we do appreciate that there is a lot of information to take in there. So, if you would prefer to have a chat with someone, either to clarify a few things or even get started, please get in touch. You can either call us on 01205 805 155, or request a call back, whichever you would prefer! 

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What to do now?


That could be the question that will be running through the minds of hundreds of people as a result of Sainsbury’s axing 500 jobs.What to do next

In an effort to make £500 million of savings over the next three years, Sainsbury’s announced that 500 members of staff from their support centers will lose their jobs. 

It can be tough to know where to go next after losing your job. But if you enjoy using your own experience and qualifications to help others succeed, then becoming an NVQ Assessor may be a career that could be ideal for you. 

Providing you are occupationally competent in a sector, then you can become an NVQ Assessor in that sector. If you’re facing redundancy or are out of work, a career as an assessor may be the next step. 

Our Course

Our 8 Week Assessor Course is designed to give anyone the opportunity to become an NVQ Assessor. Most colleges and training providers will require you to have access to candidates to assess. But, if you are losing your job then it’s likely that will make the course virtually impossible for you to complete. However, one of the benefits with training to become an Assessor with Brooks and Kirk is that we can actually provide you with access to the candidates to assess. 

Also, providing you are aged over 24, you could be eligible for funding. This can cover the cost of the course and not worry about the repayments until you’re earning over £21,000 pa.

If this sounds like something that may be of interest to you, then please get in touch with us either using the details on the ‘Contact Us‘ page, or by submitting your information below. 

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