Professional Cookery

Professional Cookery

The Scottish Vocational Qualifications (SVQs) in Professional Cookery recognise the knowledge and skills of candidates working in the hospitality sector. These vocational qualifications are based on the standards developed by People 1st, the sector skills council for hospitality, leisure, travel and tourism. The SVQs are intended for people who are employed as chefs, trainee chefs or cooks, within the hotel, restaurant, café or workplace canteen industry.

At SVQ Level 2 there are two possible qualifications, both designed to suit the varying needs of candidates and centres:

At SVQ Level 3 there are three possible qualifications, each designed to suit the varying needs of candidates and centres:

 These qualifications are available through FE colleges and training providers.

Why deliver this qualification

These SVQs are based on up-to-date industry practice and achievement is nationally recognised. Optional Units can be selected to suit the individual candidate’s work role.

The SVQs can be offered at any time — they do not need to follow the academic session.

Assessor’s Guidelines and candidate recording forms are available to download from the SVQ Hospitality and Tourism web page. A bank of underpinning knowledge questions is available to download from SQA’s secure website.

Who does this qualification suit

These SVQs are aimed at individuals who work as, or are training to be, chefs or cooks within hotels, restaurants, cafés, guest houses, workplace canteens, care homes or private residential establishments.


Entry is at the discretion of the centre. Candidates undertaking these SVQs should be in a role that relates to the qualifications and allows them to generate work-related evidence.


Candidates who successfully complete one of these qualifications can progress to further SVQs within the Hospitality and Professional Cookery framework. These SVQs could also open up opportunities for further employment or promotion within the hospitality industry.


Centres with devolved authority for approval should use their own internal approval process.

Centres without devolved authority require to come forward for approval and should contact SQA’s Business Development Team for guidance.

Assessors and verifiers must be able to meet SQA’s general requirements for technical/occupational competence as outlined in the Systems and Qualification Approval Guide.

Centres should pay particular attention to the requirements set out in the assessment strategy if operating qualification via an RWE.

How to assess

Assessment is through performance in the workplace. Evidence can be gathered by observation, product evaluation, questioning, witness testimony or personal statement.

The acceptable use of simulation is outlined in the assessment strategy for this qualification.

Qualification content and delivery tools

Information about the qualification(s)

Qualification Structure

National Occupational Standards

Unit information for this qualification is available on our Accredited Qualification Unit Search.


Fact sheets

Modern Apprenticeship

The SCQF level 5 SVQs in Professional Cookery are also part of the SCQF level 5 Modern Apprenticeship in Hospitality.

The SCQF level 6 SVQs in Professional Cookery are also part of the SCQF level 6 Modern Apprenticeship in Professional Cookery.

Information about delivery, assessment, quality assurance and support material

Useful Links

mappIT logo Skills Development Scotland Logo People First Logo
Visit Scotland Logo