ABC awards/Ofqual?

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by laferney, Dec 1, 2019.

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  1. laferney

    laferney Member

    Some courses on the internet at sites like the Centre for Excellence

    https://www.centreofexcellence.com/shop/neuropsychology-diploma-course/

    say upon completion of this course you can recive a certificate oa acheievement frm ABC awards and a learner summary. It says it is regulated By Ofqual and the Welsh goverment.
    Is this a form of accredition ? What is ABC awards and Ofqual? And are the courses at the Centre or Excellence accredited in England and useful in the USA?
    Thanks in advance to anyone with knowledge about this.
     
  2. tadj

    tadj Member

    No, the course only has the endorsement of ABC Awards as part of the quality license scheme. That's not the same thing as a regulated qualification of ABC Awards. Their accredited awards are listed here; https://register.ofqual.gov.uk/Detail/Index/1006?category=organisations&query=ABC%20Awards

    If this was a regulated qualification of ABC Awards, it would be a form of accreditation. However, the listed diploma does not qualify, since it only got an endorsement from the organization.

    As for Ofqual, you can read more about them here; https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ofqual/about
     
  3. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    At first glance, any course they offer looks just like a standard MOOC. Ofqual is a British governmental department, I didn't check further than that. The course is probably OK, it's not clear that it carries credits or if they'd transfer anywhere. My guess is that the course is akin to something you'd find on edX or Coursera. Maybe someone else knows more.
     
  4. tadj

    tadj Member

    "The successful completion of an approved course alone does not lead to an Ofqual regulated qualification but may be used as evidence of knowledge and skills gained. The Learner Unit Summary (which lists the components the learner has completed as part of the course) may be used as evidence towards Recognition of Prior Learning if you wish to progress your studies in this subject. To this end the learning outcomes of each course have been benchmarked at Level 3 or 4 against level descriptors published by Ofqual, to indicate the depth of study and level of demand/complexity involved in successful completion by the learner."

    https://www.centreofexcellence.com/abc-awards-and-certa-awards-quality-licence-scheme/
     
  5. Stewart81

    Stewart81 New Member

    You are entering the non-academic realm here. OfQual is responsible for the regulation of approved awards that maybe funded by state money. To offer a qualification from secondary school to masters (but non-university awarded) that relies on Government money, you have to have this. You do not legally have to have it to offer qualifications though and there is a huge argument here due to some universities refusing to accept non-OfQual awards AZ they are not 'regulated'. In UK terms all regulated means is that they meet specific criteria to be paid for by public sector funding. Some awards are not worth that and plenty of bodies have it withdrawn while several have refused to apply. Interestingly Oxford and Cambridge tend to ignore this anyway.
    Under UK law the only qualification you require Government approval to offer is degrees.
     
  6. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    OK, that's easy enough o understand. My next question would be, How is this viewed in the job market? Does this have any value for employers. Am I going to get a raise or a promotion if I go that route?
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2019
  7. Phdtobe

    Phdtobe Well-Known Member

    Confusing! The only people who gets hurt are students. In situations like these , poorer students. The water get pretty muddy, at least murky, with the many quasi-legitimate lower level programs. Many of the experts on DI has used terms like “laundering“ in moving courses from these unaccredited quasi-legitimate bodies to accredited institutions. Truly, unless one is an expert in this shenanigans, is it wise to recommend these sort of arrangements to upcoming students? Shouldn’t a real community college or cheap government institutions be the best choice?
     
  8. Stewart81

    Stewart81 New Member

    It depends entirely on the employer. If an award is paid for by the candidate or employer then by the letter of the law, OfQual has no bearing at all. Most employers view extra qualifications as a bonus and in some fields these particular awards have been devised for companies to enable employees to take for promotion, to certify in-house training etc.
    Certain regulated professions are strict such as teaching, medicine, law as you would expect but it is still very mixed elsewhere.
     
  9. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    Soonbalance, even if these qualifications are seen as legitimate, they really are of questionable value.
     
  10. Stewart81

    Stewart81 New Member

    We don't have community college here as such, we have Further Education ones and any award offered by these is usually OfQual regulated as the awarding body (not the institution but an external board usually) as most colleges offer funded places to those on low incomes or within certain Government confines.
    Quasi-legitimate is a very inflammatory description over here as even regulated bodies may offer unregulated qualifications. There is no external verification of this at all. In my own sphere my colleagues at London College of Music Exams (the external awards of the College, which is part of University of West London) offer regulated, OfQual approved awards alongside their non-regulated ones. The latter are for specific use and would never get through the guidelines for OfQual and if they tried they can be pretty hard on you for doing so (I've been on the receiving end). Generally the market place factors out those not worth the paper they're on.
     
    Phdtobe likes this.
  11. Stewart81

    Stewart81 New Member

    There is actually a very big move to reduce the influence of OfQual, with Oxford and Cambridge part of it. The majority of UK Universities take applications through UCAS, who take a handsome cut. A number of the older bodies are now asking people to apply directly again to enable them to look at all qualifications as they recognise many valid awards are not on the OfQual register. They prefer to see what a person has achieved rather than ticking the boxes.

    I personally think OfQual has its place, if public money is being spent then if course awards need to be accountable from the outset. However it is also possible to develop an award with European funding (for now...) that is officially not approved for State funding. HE is totally separate to this as it is much more strictly controlled.
     

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