Vocational qualifications are either work-related qualifications designed to enable students to gain the skills required to perform a particular job, or qualifications that may be taken as part of a wider study programme or an apprenticeship.
Schools and colleges may offer qualifications that are not included in the DfE performance tables, if approved for teaching to 16-19 year olds by the Secretary of State for Education in England under Section 96, where this is in the best interests of individual students.
This qualification reflects the skills, knowledge, and performance criteria required in elite level sport, and is designed to measure athlete’s abilities in planning, applying, and evaluating their development in the appropriate technical, tactical, physical, and psychological aspects of their sport. The qualification develops a range of techniques, personal skills, and attributes essential for successful performance in working life, and also addresses wider issues such as lifestyle, career development, communication, and health and safety.
The qualification is often taken in conjunction with the Pearson BTEC Level 3 Certificate in Understanding Sports Performance (QCF). The two qualifications complement one another, one providing the underpinning knowledge and understanding, and the other assessing the application of knowledge, understanding, and skills. It forms part of the Apprenticeship in Achieving Sport Excellence.
It may also be taken alongside other Level 3 programmes such as A levels or BTEC Nationals.
All units are internally assessed through evidence provided by the student to meet set criteria. The assessments are quality assured through external verification.
There are a number of key considerations for HEPs when reviewing vocational qualifications that are not listed on the DfE 16 – 19 performance tables for England:
- Some of these qualifications are occupational, and may not be designed specifically for prograesssion to HE.
- Applicants holding these qualifications may be school or college leavers, however, some may be more mature students who are likely to have other relevant experience alongside these qualifications.
- These qualifications may have been taken as part of a wider study programme or an apprenticeship.
- If they are presented for admission to HE it is likely to be in conjunction with other qualifications.