If we had a pound for every time someone asked us that question, we would all be retired and sipping piña coladas on a beach in Barbados… The bad news is we are still in drizzly England, sipping cups of tea in our office. But the good news is we still get to work with all you lovely people!
So, back to that million dollar question, after you have got your assessor qualification, what level would you be qualified to assess up to?!
The easy answer to that question is; you can assess at any level that you are deemed to be occupationally competent.
Does that answer your question? Probably not…
So, let’s take it right from the top. Firstly, you will need to meet the requirements that are set out in the awarding organisation’s qualification specification. Just in case you aren’t overly familiar with awarding bodies and what they do; every learning provider that is offering accredited qualifications must be a registered centre with an awarding organisation. That awarding body is who the training provider/college would register and certificate learners through. For every accredited qualification they offer, there will be an accompanying specification. This will detail everything that the learning provider needs to know about that qualification; including the ‘Requirements for Assessors’ involved with the delivery and assessment of that course.
You could, if you wanted to, have a read of the requirements for assessors for a few different qualifications. A quick word of warning, it certainly won’t be the most entertaining thing you have read this year. I have cropped out the relevant sections from the respective specifications below to save you A LOT of scrolling.
Do you need to be qualified to have occupational competence?
If you actually took the time to have a read through any of the above pages then you should have noticed something quite surprising. Not one of the above specifications says that you need to hold the respective qualification to be able to assess it. So, you can assess a Level 3 NVQ Diploma in Construction Contracting Operations without even having that qualification yourself. This isn’t just the case with these three qualifications, you will find that this is the case for the majority of vocational qualifications. As you can see from the pages above, it is all about how that term ‘occupational competence’ is defined. There is nothing saying that you need to have x, y and z in order to be deemed occupationally competent. Which is why it is the learning provider who determines whether or not you have sufficient occupational competence.
This means that whilst you can technically be eligible to assess a qualification according to its specification, any provider or college could deem you to be ineligible to assess that same qualification for them. That is exactly why the question “what level can I assess up to?” can be such a tricky question to answer. Because at the end of the day, it all boils down to what the learning provider’s policies are for their own assessors. Every training provider and college will call the shots when deciding what their requirements are for their own assessors.
Lots of experience but no qualifications.
What you need to remember is that this only becomes a bit of a grey area for those who have been working in their sector for donkey’s years, but don’t have any qualifications to show for it. Obviously, if you have been working in your area of expertise for the last 10 years and you are qualified to level 3 in your occupation, then you will definitely be qualified to assess vocational qualifications in your occupation up to and most of the time including level 3. It all depends on how each individual training organisation views your level of occupational competence.
So there we have it. However if you are still wondering “so… what level can I assess up to?!?” then please give us a call! We appreciate that everyone’s situation is different, so there isn’t a definitive answer for everyone. Worst case scenario, even if we can’t answer your question, we will be able to point you in the right direction.
We look forward to hearing from you!