PDA in Innovations in Hair Design at SCQF level 7

PDA in Innovations in Hair Design at SCQF level 7

Professional Development Awards (PDAs) extend or broaden professional or vocational skills and are linked to National Occupational Standards. The PDA in Innovations in Hair Design at SCQF level 7 focuses on the practical , artistic nature of hairdressing by allowing the research and design elements of the students’ personalities to grow as this is expected in industry to keep abreast of current trends.  The PDA covers including creative designs in haircutting, colour, colour correction and innovative design, training skills and long hair design. The PDA also develops academic writing and research skills in the written/portfolio elements of the course.

This qualification is available through colleges, training providers and some employers. It has been designed to be delivered on line to allow students a flexible approach to study. 

Why deliver this qualification

The PDA in Innovations in Hair Design at SCQF level 7 has developed in partnership with employers and industry.

It will help employers meet skills gaps and provide continuing professional development for staff, while learners will gain knowledge and skills needed for progression in the workplace.

Who does this qualification suit

The target audience is trained and employed hairdressers wanting to up-skill without having to leave employment to do so.


Students must be currently employed in the hairdressing industry as this will allow opportunities to carry out and engage with the practical work needed for assessment throughout their study.  They should also:

  • hold either a Level 3 hairdressing qualification (SCQF Level 6) or have five years industry experience.
  • Have basic ICT skills
  • Access to a computer or mobile device with Broadband
  • Access to a local college/assessment centre 


The PDA is developed form four existing Units within the HNC in Hairdressing at SCQF Level 7.


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

Centres without devolved authority will have 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

How to assess

Each individual Unit specification gives detailed information on the Evidence Requirements and approaches to assessment for each Unit.

Practical assessments can be carried out in College or in the workplace by filming the assessment in time lapse and receiving a witness testimony from the model. 

Closed book assessments will be carried out in college under supervised conditions. Access to a local college/assessment centre is essential.

Assessment support packs are available for three of the Units in this qualification.


Where can you take this course?

Qualification Structure

Group Award code: GL0A 47 (32 SCQF credit points)


The PDA in Innovations in Hair Design at SCQF level 7 consists of 4 mandatory Units.

Group Award Specification