PDA Electronic Fire and Security Systems SCQF level 6

PDA Electronic Fire and Security Systems SCQF level 6

Professional Development Awards (PDAs) extend or broaden professional or vocational skills and are linked to National Occupational Standards.

The PDA in Electronic Fire and Security Systems at SCQF level 6 covers areas such as health and safety, electrical engineering principles and the commissioning, installation and maintenance of alarm and security systems.

The PDA also allows learners to develop Core Skills in Communication, Numeracy, Problem Solving, Working with Others and ICT. In addition, learners will develop skills in goal setting and time management.

This qualification is available through colleges and training providers.

Alternative assessment guidance

This subject will not have alternative assessment guidance for session 2023-24. You should refer to the Group Award/Unit specifications for detailed delivery and assessment information. For general support on delivery and assessment see the HNVQ assessment guidance 2023-24.

Why deliver this qualification

The PDA in Electronic Fire and Security Systems at SCQF level 6 has been developed in partnership with employers and industry to formalise and standardise training in this sector, for Scotland.

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.

Candidates will develop knowledge and skills in the installation and maintenance of electronic fire and security systems that meet the current and emerging needs of the security systems sector, particularly in relation to the use of new technologies.

This qualification provides the underpinning knowledge and skills required to complete the SVQ 3 in Providing Electronic Fire and Security Systems at SCQF level 6 and meets the requirements of the Modern Apprenticeship in Electronic Security Systems at level 3

Who does this qualification suit

This qualification is aimed at:

  • employees in the security industry who are attending college on a part-time basis and who will be undertaking concurrently the PDA in Electronic Fire and Security Systems, the SVQ in Providing Electronic Fire and Security Systems, and the MA in Electronic Security Systems at level 3 over a period of three years
  • those within the security industry who may wish to upskill and acquire a formal qualification in Electronic Fire and Security Systems
  • those with an interest in gaining future employment in the security industry


Entry is at the discretion of the centre.

It is recommended, however, that prospective learners have attained qualifications which demonstrate competence in Numeracy and Communication at SCQF level 5 and a science or technical qualification at SCQF level 5.

For examples of relevant qualifications, please refer to the Access section of the Group Award Specification document.

In addition to evidence of attained qualifications, centres may wish to consider using a pre-entry test and interview to ensure that each prospective learner has sufficient academic ability and the appropriate personal qualities to achieve the award.


The Units in the PDA have been mapped against the National Occupational Standards for Electronic Security Systems.

Successful completion of the PDA in Electronic Fire and Security Systems can lead to progression in the workplace and in the security industry.


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 Guide to Approval.

How to assess

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

Where can you take this course?

Qualification Structure

Group Award code: GJ7L 46

The PDA in Electronic Fire and Security Systems at SCQF level 6 consists of 11 mandatory Units. There are no optional Units.

Group Award Specification

Modern Apprenticeships

This PDA is a mandatory component in the Level 3 Electronic Security Systems Modern Apprenticeship.

SQA also offers the following components of this Apprenticeship:

  • SVQ 3 Providing Electronic Fire and Security Systems (GG9K 23)
Unit title SCQF 5
Core Skills: Communication F427 04
Core Skills: Numeracy F42B 04
Core Skills: Information and Communication Technology F42F 04
Core Skills: Problem Solving F42K 04
Core Skills: Working with Others F42P 04

Related links

Skills for security