National 4 ESOL

National 4 ESOL

The National 4 ESOL Course enables learners to understand and use English language and to plan and research by applying English Language skills. This Course contributes towards the development of literacy skills by providing learners with opportunities to read, write, listen and speak in English.

ESOL homepage

Mandatory information

Course Specification

This explains the overall structure of the Course, including its purpose and aims and information on the skills, knowledge and understanding that will be developed.

Unit Specifications

These provide an outline of what each Unit will cover within the Course and detail the Outcomes and Assessment Standards.

Added Value Unit Specification

These define the mandatory requirements for the Added Value Unit, including the Outcomes and Assessment Standards.

They also include the further mandatory information on Course coverage for the National 4 Course and include information on the assessment method to be used and the conditions of assessment.

Advice and guidance

Course and Unit Support Notes

These provide advice and guidance for teachers/lecturers on learning, teaching and assessment within the Course and its Units.

Support materials

National 4 Learning Support Material

Assessment support

Past Papers and Marking Instructions

Added Value Unit Assessment

The ESOL Added Value Unit assessment is an assignment. While describing what candidates must do, the published assessment offers considerable flexibility in the choice of a context for the assessment.

In the assessment, candidates choose topics and texts in consultation with the assessor, then select relevant information from at least two straightforward texts, one of which must be written; make an oral presentation on the topic in English; and respond orally in English to oral questions relevant to the topic.

Centres can access the assessment through their SQA Co-ordinator.

As with all SQA Unit assessments, Added Value Unit assessments must be internally verified by centres.

Unit Assessment Support

These documents contain details of Unit assessment task(s), show approaches to gathering evidence and how the evidence can be judged against the Outcomes and Assessment Standards. Teachers/lecturers can arrange access to these confidential documents through their SQA Co-ordinator.


Understanding Standards materials

We are publishing examples of candidate evidence with commentaries as part of our Understanding Standards programme. These materials are for teachers and lecturers to help them develop their understanding of the standards required for assessment. As these materials become available, they are being published in the following locations:

  • Available from our secure website Materials relating to Unit assessment, internally assessed components of Course assessment, and externally assessed components of Course assessment which are subject to visiting assessment. Teachers and lecturers can arrange access to these materials through their SQA Co-ordinator.
  • Available from our Understanding Standards website Materials relating to externally assessed components of Course assessment, with the exception of those subject to visiting assessment.

More information on our Understanding Standards programme, can be found on our Understanding Standards page.


Verification and Course Reports