NPA Aquaculture

The National Progression Award (NPA) in Aquaculture develops a candidate’s interest in aquaculture and supports the requirements of recent recruits to the salmon farming industry. Set at SCQF levels 4 and 5, the Award takes a very practical and vocational approach with much of the delivery taking place, where possible, at aquaculture sites.

At level 4, the NPA introduces candidates to local aquatic environments and aquaculture activities, and provides the flexibility to study and experience finfish and/or shellfish production.

At level 5, the NPA provides an insight into aquaculture which will enable candidates to confirm their interest in the sector as a career or pathway to further study.

The NPA in Aquaculture also develops employability skills and Core Skills. It is available through a limited number of training providers.

Why study this qualification

The main target audiences for the NPA in Aquaculture are secondary school candidates and recently recruited fish-farm staff.

The NPA at SCQF level 4 is suited to secondary school S3–4 candidates with a genuine interest in the aquatic environment and aquaculture.

The NPA at SCQF level 5 is aimed at anyone looking for an insight into global aquaculture together with practical work experience and skills development. This will include S5–6 candidates; recent fish-farm husbandry recruits undergoing induction; and individuals seeking a career change.

Both levels offer the skills required by industry and real work experience, leaving candidates in a better position for a career in the sector.

Access

Entry is at the discretion of the centre. A genuine interest in aquaculture is highly desirable.

No specific formal qualifications are required. It would be beneficial if candidates possessed Communication, Numeracy, ICT, Problem Solving and Working with Others at SCQF level 3 for the level 4 NPA and at SCQF level 4 for the level 5 NPA.

Employment and progression

Successful candidates could progress to:

  • the NPA at SCQF level 5 (from level 4)
  • SVQ Level 2 in Aquaculture
  • ocally devised FE programmes at SCQF levels 4–6

With the appropriate educational profile, candidates could also progress to:

  • PDA in Fish and Aquatic Science
  • HNC in Fish Farming

Qualification structure

Group Award codes:

G9D8 44 (24 SCQF credit points) SCQF level: 4

G9D9 45 (24 SCQF credit points) SCQF level: 5

NPA in Aquaculture Arrangements SCQF levels 4 and 5 (144 KB)

Structure

At level 4, candidates are required to take two mandatory Units (one SQA credit, 6 SCQF credit points) and optional Units totalling three SQA credits (18 SCQF credit points), with at least one credit coming from the Restricted Optional section.

At level 5, candidates are required to take two mandatory Units (two SQA credits, 12 SCQF credit points) and optional Units totalling two SQA credits (12 SCQF credit points), with at least one credit coming from the Restricted Optional section.

NPA Level 4:

Mandatory Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

North European Aquaculture: An Introduction

F6T9 10

0.5

Aquatic Environment: Local Investigation

F6TA 10

0.5

Restricted Optional Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

Aquaculture: An Introduction to Finfish Production

F6TB 10

1

Aquaculture: An Introduction to Shellfish Production

F6TC 10

1

Optional Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

Aquaculture: Basic Seamanship

F6TD 10

0.5

Scottish Sea Fisheries: An Introduction

F6TE 10

0.5

Establishing a Business Identity

F5GA 10

0.25

Business and Finance: An Introduction

F5G8 10

0.25

Business and Marketing: An Introduction

F5G9 10

0.25

Business and E-Commerce: An Introduction

F9G7 10

0.25

Work Experience

D36H 10

1

NPA Level 5

Mandatory Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

Global Aquaculture

F6TF 11

1

Aquatic Environments for Aquaculture

F6TG 11

1

Restricted Optional Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

Aquaculture: Salmonid Ova Production

F6TH 11

1

Aquaculture: Floating Cage Fish Farm Operations

F6TJ 11

1

Optional Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

Aquaculture: An Introduction to Finfish Production

F6TB 10

1

Aquaculture: An Introduction to Shellfish Production

F6TC 10

1

Starting in Business

DK2P 11

1

Work Experience

D36H 11

1

Any other information
The knowledge-based components of the NPAs have been mapped to the National Occupational Standards (NOS) for Aquaculture.

It is possible to complete the Work Experience Unit* by undertaking a work placement, developing generic employability skills and attitudes, and satisfying the Unit Outcomes.

*Although many employers are not prepared to supervise 14–16 year old pupils on marine facilities due to insurance implications, the risks associated with a land-based hatchery are considerably lower, and these facilities may provide opportunities for relevant work experience in the short term.

Unit search

Qualification structure

Group Award codes:

G9D8 44 (24 SCQF credit points) SCQF level: 4

G9D9 45 (24 SCQF credit points) SCQF level: 5

NPA in Aquaculture Arrangements SCQF levels 4 and 5 (144 KB)

Structure

At level 4, candidates are required to take two mandatory Units (one SQA credit, 6 SCQF credit points) and optional Units totalling three SQA credits (18 SCQF credit points), with at least one credit coming from the Restricted Optional section.

At level 5, candidates are required to take two mandatory Units (two SQA credits, 12 SCQF credit points) and optional Units totalling two SQA credits (12 SCQF credit points), with at least one credit coming from the Restricted Optional section.

NPA Level 4:

Mandatory Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

North European Aquaculture: An Introduction

F6T9 10

0.5

Aquatic Environment: Local Investigation

F6TA 10

0.5

Restricted Optional Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

Aquaculture: An Introduction to Finfish Production

F6TB 10

1

Aquaculture: An Introduction to Shellfish Production

F6TC 10

1

Optional Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

Aquaculture: Basic Seamanship

F6TD 10

0.5

Scottish Sea Fisheries: An Introduction

F6TE 10

0.5

Establishing a Business Identity

F5GA 10

0.25

Business and Finance: An Introduction

F5G8 10

0.25

Business and Marketing: An Introduction

F5G9 10

0.25

Business and E-Commerce: An Introduction

F9G7 10

0.25

Work Experience

D36H 10

1

NPA Level 5

Mandatory Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

Global Aquaculture

F6TF 11

1

Aquatic Environments for Aquaculture

F6TG 11

1

Restricted Optional Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

Aquaculture: Salmonid Ova Production

F6TH 11

1

Aquaculture: Floating Cage Fish Farm Operations

F6TJ 11

1

Optional Units:

Unit title

Code

SQA credit value

Aquaculture: An Introduction to Finfish Production

F6TB 10

1

Aquaculture: An Introduction to Shellfish Production

F6TC 10

1

Starting in Business

DK2P 11

1

Work Experience

D36H 11

1

Any other information
The knowledge-based components of the NPAs have been mapped to the National Occupational Standards (NOS) for Aquaculture.

It is possible to complete the Work Experience Unit* by undertaking a work placement, developing generic employability skills and attitudes, and satisfying the Unit Outcomes.

*Although many employers are not prepared to supervise 14–16 year old pupils on marine facilities due to insurance implications, the risks associated with a land-based hatchery are considerably lower, and these facilities may provide opportunities for relevant work experience in the short term.

Unit search

How to assess

There are no closed-book end-of-Unit assessments. Instead, tasks completed and information gathered will go towards a portfolio of evidence.

Assessment takes place at various points during the programme. A wide range of assessment methods are used within the Units including multiple-choice questions, short reports, portfolios, and observation of practical tasks.

Assessments requiring a written report are completed to a given structure for SCQF level 4, ensuring that the challenge presented is appropriate to the level. The use of online multiple-choice questions is recommended for assessing factual knowledge, thus allowing more schools to access the qualification and limiting college delivery time.

Practical assessments within the aquaculture Units can be completed on a fish-farm or within a college training facility.

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