Connecting With SQA - SQA's Monthly E-zine.

Friday, 2 June 2006
Issue 8

We would like to thank you all for your interest and support for the Connecting with SQA e-zine. The e-zine will be taking a break over the summer and your next issue will be sent to you on 8 September 2006.

HN Celebration Day

PHOTO: HN Celebration Day at Hampden Park.

The final event in our year-long celebration of the 80th year of Higher National qualifications took place on 1 June at Hampden Park, Glasgow. The day allowed Scotland's colleges to showcase their HN qualifications and students to an audience including employers and schools. The exhibitions, performances and demonstrations included music, dance, science, fashion, sport, horticulture and hospitality.

Operational Help Centre

LOGO: Operational Help Centre.

An online Operational Help Centre was made available from the end of May for users of This replaces the separate Operational Guides for Schools, Colleges and ETPs.

The information in the Operational Help Centre will be updated on an on-going basis, and is available from the ĎHelpí section of Users can access data on, for example, key dates and registration and entry guidelines, by using simple or more defined searches.

Join us at the Gathering 'The Gathering' is a fair for Scotland's charity and voluntary sector, taking place at the SECC in Glasgow, 19-21 June.

We will be at stand 117, together with Care Scotland. Come along and see us and find out about the range of qualifications we offer.

» Find out more about the event.

Professional Development Workshops We are running the following Professional Development Workshops (PDWs) in June:

  • Meeting the Requirements of V1
    Tuesday 13 June in Dalkeith

  • Preparing for Candidate Queries about the Revised 2006 SQC
    Wednesday 14 June in Glasgow and Thursday 22 June in Dalkeith

  • Managing an SVQ Programme
    Thursday 22 June in Glasgow

If any of these workshops would help with your Continuing Professional Development (CPD), please click on the link below for information and our registration form. Alternatively, call our Customer Contact Centre on 0845 279 1000, where someone will be happy to process your booking.

» Register your place. Remember places are limited.

Drugs and Alcohol Today Scotland This is an annual exhibition that bring together the public, private and not-for-profit sectors in this field. The event is taking place at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Glasgow on 6 June 2006.

The exhibition provides the ideal opportunity, for you to get together with thousands of your peers to network, learn, share and enjoy the latest developments, news, innovations and opportunities in the sector.

Care Scotland will also be exhibiting, so come along and see us and find out about the range of qualifications we offer.

» Find out more about the event.

HN Computing and IT An event to showcase a number of projects we are developing in HN Computing and IT is being held on Friday 18 August in Glasgow.

If you are interested in finding out more about this event, please contact your SQA Co-ordinator, who will shortly be receiving full information.
Worldskills 2011 success for UK In our April issue, we reported on our support for the UK bid to host the world's largest skills competition for young people. We are very pleased to report that this bid has been successful, so the 2011 Worldskills competition will be held in London.

Allan Wilson, Deputy Minister for Enterprise and Lifelong Learning, said that it offers Scotland a fantastic opportunity to showcase its talents to the rest of the world. He said it is hoped that Scotland can host a day at the four-day event, which will see young people aged 18-22, from more than 40 countries, compete in skills ranging from engineering and IT to carpentry and cooking.

» Find out more.

DIVA Programme Update June is a busy month for our DIVA (Digital media and ICT Vendor Alliance) Programme.

On 6 June, an Industry and Skills Forum for Digital Home Technologies meets in Glasgow to review the implications of developments in the 'connected home and office' for awards in the construction area. On 12 June, the Annual DIVA Lead Centre meeting will review activities since the launch of the DIVA collaboration and plan the next phase of activity.

Meantime, a survey of vendor and Open Source software tools used in ICT and creative media is underway with a view to enhancing integration with existing awards. This has already involved the Lead Partner Reference Group which meets twice a year and is open to all Colleges.

» Find out more.

New Academic Graduation Hood introduced In direct response to student feedback, we are introducing a new academic hood for candidates graduating with HND (SCQF level 8 and above) Group Awards this session.

The existing hood will be used for candidates achieving HNC (SCQF level 7) Group Awards. The hoods were on show at yesterday's HN Celebration Day at Hampden Park.

New SVQs in Child Care We are pleased to announce that together with the Sector Skills Council and Skills for Care and Development, we have recently launched a number of new Scottish Vocational Qualifications (SVQs) in Children's Care and Learning and Development.

» Find out more.

History of Scotland's Higher National qualifications: the 1980s The Falklands War and the Berlin Wall coming down were international news, while in Scotland, the emergence of Silicon Glen, the Linwood car plant closure and the Piper Alpha and Lockerbie tragedies were witnessed.

By 1985, SCOTEC and SCOTBEC had merged to become SCOTVEC, its remit to develop and encourage the advancement of vocational education and training in the context of national educational policy. Like its predecessors, SCOTVEC made an impact on tertiary education with its effective industry/education networks.

Over 7,200 eligible candidates enrolled in 1985-86 for the 87 qualifications now available, rising to 9,800 in 1987-88. This represented a 40 per cent increase for HNCs and a 30 per cent rise in HND applicants in that three-year period.

SQA staff raise money for MS Scotland SQA staff recently presented a cheque for £8,000 to the MS Society (Scotland) after a year-long campaign for the charity.
New faces and senior changes at SQA We are pleased to announce that we have recently appointed Karen McCallum as our new Director of Operations, and John MacDonald has been promoted to the vacant position of Depute Director of Qualifications.

» Read the full story.

Candidate Study Guides We have developed a number of study guides for candidates.

Our Your Exams 2006 explains what you should expect and what to do, and tells you how you will receive your results and your certificate.

Our Study Skills and Strategies guide is all about doing well in exams and fulfilling your potential. The sections of the guide make use of scientific research but also common sense and the everyday experiences of teachers and students.

» Access the Guides.
Click here to view the National Qualifications section of SQA's website. Click here to view the Higher National section of SQA's website.