Senior External Verifier

A Senior External Verifier is responsible for ensuring that all tasks associated with the verification and approval of qualifications are carried out within the conditions, timescales and arrangements set by SQA.

The prime role is to prepare for and manage the team of external verifiers in the delivery of verification procedures for qualifications in the subject area(s) concerned to ensure that standards are maintained.

These activities will be under the direction of staff from SQA’s Internal Assessment Delivery and Quality Assurance and Qualification Development directorates as appropriate.

Outline of duties

  • Lead, direct, and support the external verification processes in accordance with SQA policy and specification
  • Provide leadership and support to a team of External Verifiers
  • Conduct external verification visits and accompany new External Verifiers on visits when authorised
  • Conduct prior verification of centres’ internally devised instruments of assessment
  • Conduct approval, post approval and development visits to centres
  • Monitor External Verifier decisions at central verification when required
  • Lead verification group meetings
  • Prepare an annual internal assessment report and if applicable, assist in the preparation of course reports
  • Assist Internal Assessment Delivery and Quality Assurance staff with policy and subject specific enquiries from centres, external verifiers and SQA officers
  • Lead, deliver and or participate in external verifier training events
  • Participate in centre appeals process and centre complaint investigations
  • Ensure all activities are concluded within agreed time frames and that resources are used effectively and efficiently to achieve best value
  • Undertake performance management activity of the external verification team
  • Additionally, Senior External Verifiers may be asked to undertake the following activities. These activities will attract additional payment
    • Act as a Vetter for internal assessment materials in the qualifications area concerned.
    • Participate in SQA organised events where Senior External Verifier input is required.
    • Assist Principal Assessor in preparing for grade boundary meetings where required
    • Contribute to the Understanding Standards activities

Selection Criteria

Essential characteristics

Successful candidates must be able to:

  • Demonstrate up-to-date subject knowledge and a high level of expertise in assessment across the range of courses, levels, qualification types, verification group(s) and the areas for which they are responsible. Senior External Verifiers will be expected to have appropriate academic, vocational or professional qualifications or expertise in the same or closely related subject area for which they seek an appointment.
  • Demonstrate excellent interpersonal skills and be able to engage positively with all members of their team, providing leadership and support as required
  • Communicate confidently, effectively and professionally with their Verification team, Head of Centre and /or SQA Co-ordinator and SQA staff both orally (at briefings and meetings) and in writing (reports)
  • Provide accurate feedback on performance to team members (including Markers) in a supportive and professional manner
  • Work co-operatively and professionally with other centre staff and SQA staff
  • Demonstrate excellent organisational and administrative skills and provide an attention to detail
  • Have a home computer or laptop with broadband internet connection and a private e-mail address

Desirable characteristics

Successful candidates should:

  • Have an in-depth understanding of all documentation, duties, tasks and procedures associated with the verification area for which they have responsibility
  • Hold a current clean driving licence
  • Senior External Verifiers engaged in HN (work-based) and SVQ external verification will be expected to have achieved (D35 or V2), or be working towards achieving the V2 Unit Conduct External Quality assurance of the Assessment Process. Candidates with D35 must demonstrate that in their practice they are meeting the V2 standard.

Key Performance Measures for Senior External Verifiers

Each year, on completion of the duties outlined in the Senior External Verifier contract specification, the Senior External Verifier will be measured against the following key performance measures and informed of the outcome in relation to their performance in that year.

1. Train, develop and support members of the EV team to meet SQA requirements
2. Monitor performance of members of the EV team to meet SQA requirements
3. Ensure consistency of decisions made by members of the EV team
4. Ensure reports generated by members of the EV team meet quality standard
5. Positive engagement with all members of the team through leadership and management of people
6. Positive engagement with all member of SQA staff
7. Complete Senior Verifier reports within conditions and timescales for SQA
8. Satisfactorily fulfil the KPMs of the External Verifier role