Regulated qualifications concentrate on the individual and their development and show that they have achieved a minimum level in a subject area.
There are currently four regulators within the UK, all who have been created through Acts of Parliament and so have statutory powers to put in place and uphold standards helping to give these qualifications extra credibility both within the UK and internationally.
If an Awarding Body can offer regulated qualifications, you can be assured that they have met and continue to meet these standards and that their qualifications are fit for purpose.
Regulated qualifications help to ensure reliability and consistency. If an individual achieves a qualification, it doesn’t matter where they are locally, regionally, nationally or internationally, they all must meet the same requirements. It helps to provide confidence in the knowledge and skills that person claims to have. It isn’t something they say they can do; they’ve had to prove it and prove it to a recognised standard.
Industry and employers, both large and small, can be confident in the knowledge and skills of those individuals that work for them and the wider society can have confidence in those that provide services to them.
Let’s not also forget the sense of real achievement it can give to those that achieve qualifications, that have worked hard to develop themselves and this is a way of recognising those achievements.
They also help to provide assurance of the quality of the training provided as not only does the individual demonstrate the knowledge and skills they have developed during their training in achieving the qualification, the organisations delivering that training are also subject to quality assurance checks.
At present FireQual holds regulated status with the Council for Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment Regulation and SQA Accreditation with applications in progress with the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) and Qualifications Wales (QW).
CCEA Regulation is the regulator of qualifications within Northern Ireland and they evaluate Awarding Bodies and qualifications against the published criteria and requirements for recognition. They ensure that those offering qualifications within Northern Ireland have the capability to offer the qualifications and that they meet and continue to meet the Conditions of Recognition.
Ofqual has been the regulator of general and vocational qualifications within England since 2010. They ensure that qualifications and those that provide them continue to provide public confidence that they are fit for purpose and rigorous in their ability to correctly indicate the knowledge, skills and understanding that individuals demonstrate by their achievement.
Qualifications Wales is responsible for the regulation of general and vocational qualifications in Wales through the recognition of Awarding Bodies ensuring that they meet and continue to meet the regulatory conditions. They monitor the activities of Awarding Bodies and ensure that their qualifications are fit for purpose.
SQA Accreditation's functions are set out in the Education (Scotland) Act 1996 as amended by the Scottish Qualifications Act 2002.
The organisation has two main roles: accreditation, and awarding qualifications.
It accredits qualifications other than degrees and approves and quality assures Awarding Bodies that plan to enter people for these qualifications.