Appointee Management Case Studies

Liz Nicoll: Principal Verifier Practical Cookery

Principal Teacher Health & Wellbeing – Preston Lodge High School

Principal Verifier

I had been involved with visiting verification as an External Verifier for a number of years. The PV post was advertised, and I decided to apply, given my previous experiences. I was delighted to be appointed at the start of the New Qualifications. This gave me a great insight into the development of assessments along with the role of internal and external verification by SQA.

I enjoy working with like-minded colleagues and SQA staff to support the delivery of the course. It certainly helps you to understand — in-depth — the requirements of the candidates and the needs of the staff delivering the courses. It is exceptionally rewarding to support colleagues in delivering the course to the national standard.

The role involves training and supporting nominees in carrying out verification activity. It involves leading the team to ensure a consistent approach is achieved and standards are consistently applied. It involves follow-up activity with centres that have a 'Not accepted' status applied, supporting them in moving forward successfully. It involves close working relationships with SQA staff to ensure everyone is informed and supported in making their judgements.

The role certainly gives you an appreciation of the role and functions of SQA and how it interacts with centres. It has allowed me to develop a much greater understanding of the course, how SQA anticipated it being delivered, and how it can be tailored to best meet the needs of the young people. It has also given me an insight into how the 'grade boundaries' are decided and what impacts on this. It has also given me the opportunity to lead a team, increasing my confidence in supporting them in their roles back in their local authorities.

Becoming an appointee is such a positive experience, I have encouraged all my staff in my department to undertake roles in verification across the suite of courses available to Home Economics departments. They have benefited greatly from the greater awareness it provides and have been able to improve their delivery of the course in school, plus tailor their learning and teaching to best support the young people as a consequence. It is exceptionally valuable CPD, for personal and professional development.