NCFE CACHE Level 3 Childcare and Education suite (September 2014 onwards)

NCFE CACHE Level 3 Award in Childcare and Education

NCFE CACHE Level 3 Certificate in Childcare and Education

NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator)

Country
  • England
Purpose

The Level 3 Certificate in Childcare and Education and Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator) are listed on the DfE 16 – 19 performance tables in the Tech Level category.

These qualifications do not meet the full requirements for reformed Tech levels which qualifications will have to meet for inclusion in the 2018 performance tables.

Tech Level qualifications are primarily developed for learners aged 16-19 studying on either a full or part-time basis.

Tech Levels are aimed at learners with a keen interest in in a particular industry, occupation or occupational type.

Along with developing transferable skills required to work within a number of job roles, these qualifications are designed to equip learners with the high level specialist technical knowledge and skills to enable them to work within a specific industry.

They can help provide entry into employment within a particular sector, onto an apprenticeship or into higher education in a related vocational area.

They have to be recognised by a trade or professional body or at least five employers.

The NCFE CACHE Level 3 Award in Childcare and Education prepares learners to progress to the NCFE CACHE Level 3 Certificate in Childcare and Education, and then on to the NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator). They provide learners with knowledge of children from birth to seven years. However, the NCFE CACHE Level 3 Award in Childcare and Education is not listed on the DfE 16 – 19 performance tables.

The NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator) enables learners to enter the workforce as Early Years Educators, or access higher education.

Education context

Following the Wolf review of vocational qualifications in 2011, the English government announced a number of characteristics that Level 3 Tech Level qualifications have to demonstrate to feature in performance tables from 2016 onwards.

As a result, over 90% of the Level 3 qualifications previously recognised in performance tables are not now recognised.

The intention was to make reformed qualifications more rigorous and robust. As a result, they have to meet specific requirements in respect of purpose, size, recognition, content, assessment and grading.

Between 2016 and 2018 awarding bodies have been permitted to phase in the reforms.

These qualifications do not meet the full requirements for reformed qualifications in respect of content, grading and assessment.

Early Years Educator (EYE) qualifications were introduced in September 2014.

They meet the National College of Teaching and Leadership’s approved design criteria.

From September 2014, approved EYE qualifications became the only Licence to Practise qualifications for people wishing to work with children from birth to five years.

CACHE-branded qualifications are specialist qualifications in the childcare, health and social care, and education sectors.

In 2015 CACHE became part of NCFE.

Awarding organisation
  • NCFE CACHE
Qualification codes
601/3998/5 (NCFE CACHE Level 3 Award in Childcare and Education)
601/3999/7 (NCFE CACHE Level 3 Certificate in Childcare and Education)
601/4000/8 (NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator))
Structure
  • Award: The learner must pass two mandatory units, including all the criteria contained in the delivery guidance.
  • Certificate: Learners must pass eight mandatory units, including all the criteria contained in the delivery guidance, as well as an Effective Practice Study Task (externally set and externally marked).
  • Diploma: Learners must pass 15 mandatory units, including all the criteria contained in the delivery guidance.  Learners must also pass an Effective Practice Study and Extended Assessment (externally set, externally marked).

There are two early exit points; the first on achievement of the Award, and the second on achievement of the Certificate.

Dependant on learner ability and centre delivery, the Certificate can be achieved in approximately one year. It enables learners to progress to the Diploma.

Each unit qualification is graded A* – D, with the qualification overall grading being A* – D.

Subject areas

Mandatory units cover:

  • Child development from conception to seven years
  • Children’s health and well-being
  • Providing safe environments for children
  • Child health
  • Play and learning
  • Understanding children’s additional needs
  • Observation, assessment and planning
  • Professional Practice Portfolio 1
  • Supporting emergent literacy
  • Supporting emergent mathematics
  • Preparing for school readiness
  • International perspectives
  • Reflective practice for professional development
  • Professional partnerships in early years

The Diploma has an optional unit:

  • Professional Practice Portfolio 2
Levels
  • Level 3

Level 3 qualifications regulated to the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF).

A levels are Level 3 qualifications regulated to the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF).

Level 3 is the same level as the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) Level 6.

The RQF is the new system for cataloguing all qualifications regulated by Ofqual, indexing them by level and size.

The QCF was a credit-based transfer system which recognised qualifications and units by awarding credits. It has now been withdrawn for all new qualifications.

Grading

A* – D

Assessment

All units will be internally assessed using a range of methods.

All units are graded A* – D.

Learners taking the Certificate must also pass an Effective Practice Study task (externally set, externally marked).

Learners taking the Diploma must also pass an Effective Practice Study task and one Extended Assessment task (externally set, externally marked).

Contribution of assessment components to overall grade

To pass the NCFE CACHE Level 3 Award in Childcare and Education, learners must pass two mandatory units (180 GLH), including all the criteria in the delivery requirements.

To pass the NCFE CACHE Level 3 Certificate in Childcare and Education learners must pass eight mandatory units (539 GLH), including all the criteria in the delivery requirements.

In order to pass the NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator) learners must pass 15 mandatory units (1,071 GLH), including all the criteria in the delivery requirements.

Resit arrangements

There is a maximum of one further opportunity after the first submission for learners to submit the External Assessment to achieve a pass grade or to improve a grade.

Guided / notional learning hours
NCFE CACHE Level 3 Award in Childcare and Education: 180 hours
NCFE CACHE Level 3 Certificate in Childcare and Education: 539 hours
NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator): 1071 hours
Guided / notional learning hours notes

Tech levels require a minimum size of 300 glh to provide learners with sufficient time for meaningful skills development that will equip them to follow a particular trade or profession; for comparison, the size of one A level is 360 glh.

To achieve the NCFE CACHE Level 3 Award in Childcare and Education learners must complete two mandatory units (180 GLH).

UCAS Tariff points

NCFE CACHE Award in Childcare and Education (from September 2014)

Grade Points
A* 28
A 24
B 20
C 16
D 12

NCFE CACHE Certificate in Childcare and Education (from September 2014)

Grade Points
A* 84
A 72
B 60
C 48
D 36

NCFE CACHE Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator) (from September 2014)

Grade Points
A* 168
A 144
B 120
C 96
D 72
Key issues for UK HE admissions

Tech Levels are designed to support progression to employment, an apprenticeship or to higher education.

Progression to higher education is generally within the vocational area of the Tech Level and may be to a Foundation Degree.

The exact curriculum studied may depend on the choice of optional units taken.

Applicants holding Tech Level qualifications may not have had experience of external and synoptic assessment.

The first cohort will have completed the qualifications by July 2016.

Timing of assessments and results

Most learners start their studies in September and complete towards the end of the following academic year.

There is the flexibility to allow some learners to progress quicker than others.

Results are confirmed, and certificates issued, upon completion.

Qualification dates notes

This qualification is current.

Reporting of results and certification information

The results of many UK qualifications are reported to UCAS through Awarding Body Linkage (ABL).

  • A level and results from larger awarding bodies are reported automatically
  • IB results are only reported with the candidate’s permission
  • Some results are not reported through ABL; this does not reflect the validity of the qualification.

The results available through ABL can be found at: https://www.ucas.com/providers/undergraduate/undergraduate-application-process/awarding-body-linkage-abl#documents.

Where results are not available through ABL, HEPs will need to ask applicants to provide their own evidence of achievement.

Results are made available to CACHE centres throughout the year.

Data is provided for DfE, Ofqual, Skills for Care and Development and Skills Active.

Progression information

These qualifications offer progression to higher education, an apprenticeship or employment.

Progression to HE will probably be in the vocational area of the qualification and may be to a foundation degree.

Additional qualifications may be needed for progression to higher education.

Tech level qualifications are supported by at least five employers from the job sector the qualification is related to.

The NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator) enables learners to access higher education.

Alternatively, learners can progress into various job roles in the statutory, voluntary or private sectors such as:

  • Early Years Educator (Diploma only)
  • practitioner in day nurseries
  • practitioner in nursery schools
  • practitioner in reception classes in primary schools
  • pre-school worker
  • home-based childcarer
  • nanny