PDA Education, Training and Assessment SCQF level 8

Professional Development Awards (PDAs) extend or broaden professional or vocational skills and are often linked to National Occupational Standards. The PDA in Education, Training and Assessment at SCQF level 8 covers the following specialist skills: planning, designing, delivering and assessing learning to support the progression of others.

This qualification covers areas such as examining adult learning theories and their relevance to education and assessment practice and considering how technology can be used to enhance education, training, and assessment.

This qualification is available through colleges, training providers and some employers. It has been designed to be delivered as a taught course and will normally be available as a combination of workshops and self-directed study.

The PDA in Education, Training and Assessment  at SCQF level 8 has been developed in partnership with NHS Education for Scotland (NES) employers and industry so it is suitable for the sector.

Although primarily developed for use in the dental sector, it has been written using terminology and content that is also applicable in other multidisciplinary health and social care settings. This reflects the transferable knowledge and skills within professional education, training and assessment to support continued professional development, workplace training, supervision, or formal learning towards a programme that leads to a qualification.

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.

The unit-based structure aids timetable flexibility. Units are typically 40 hours of learning, and they can be delivered on a full-time or part-time basis.

This PDA provides progression routes to further study (see Progression).

The target audience is those in work who require a specific skill set.


Entry to this qualification is at the discretion of the centre, however it would be beneficial if learners have knowledge and experience of mentoring, supervision, facilitating or delivering training and providing feedback.

Learners must be able access opportunities to meet the unit’s learning outcomes and demonstrate the evidence requirements.

The unit in the PDA has been aligned to the National Occupational Standards for Learning and Development.

Learners may have the opportunity of progressing to other PDAs in Dental, Healthcare or Learning and Development.

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

Centres without devolved authority will need 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.

The unit specification gives detailed information on the evidence requirements and approaches to assessment for the unit.

Ongoing assessment will apply.

Assessment will allow candidates to enhance their own practice. The use of reports and projects is crucial to this.

The PDA in Education, Training and Assessment at SCQF level 8 consists of 1 mandatory double credit unit.

Education, Training and Assessment 2 credit points, 16 SCQF points at SCQF level 8  J7KY 35