PDA Leadership and Change SCQF level 8

 The Professional Development Award (PDA) in Leadership and Change at SCQF level 8 equips candidates to consider change in the workplace and ensure that they and their organisations are able to deal with it efficiently and effectively.

This qualification is available through colleges and is jointly certificated by SQA and the Chartered Management Institute (CMI).

The PDA in Leadership and Change at SCQF level 8:

  • is nationally recognised
  • can be achieved at work
  • has no formal entry requirements
  • provides recognition of leadership and managing change skills
  • enables progression within the Management HN and SVQ/NVQ framework
  • enhances career prospects

The PDA in Leadership and Change is intended for managers, especially team leaders with responsibility for leading or managing change. It would also be suitable for managers aspiring to this role.


Access to this award will be at the discretion of the centre. There should be no barriers to entry and the award should be open to all candidates who have a reasonable chance of achieving it.

It would, however, be beneficial if candidates had good written and oral communications skills. This PDA is at SCQF level 8 and, for this reason, it is unlikely that candidates who do not have some experience of working in a management capacity will benefit from the award.

The two Units making up the PDA are mandatory Units within the HNC and Diploma in Management. The PDA therefore can be used as a stepping stone to the HNC/Diploma in Management. Candidates who complete this PDA will have gained two credits towards the 12 that they require for an HNC Management.

The PDA in Leadership and Change at SCQF level 8 also offers progression to the SVQs in Management as the Units making up the qualification have been aligned to the national occupational standards (NOS) and therefore provide the underpinning knowledge and skills for particular SVQ Units.

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

Centres without devolved authority require 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 qualification consists of two practical Units and has been designed to suit candidates who are employed or have previous work experience. Candidates will be supported by a qualified assessor and can work through their qualification at their own pace. However, it is likely that assessment plans agreed between assessor and candidate will include target dates for completion of specific parts of each Unit.

Group Award code: G9CN 48 (16 SCQF credit points)
SCQF level: 8


The PDA in Leadership and Change at SCQF level 8 consists of two mandatory Units.

Management: Leadership at Work — H1F2 34        
Management: Plan, Lead and Implement Change — H1F3 35       

Support materials

SQA's high quality workbooks and interactive activities which assist with the delivery of the HNC in Management, Diploma in Management and the suite of PDAs in Management consisting of HN Units, are now available on SQA's secure website. See your centre's SQA Co-ordinator for access.

Additional information can be found on SQA's Management subject homepage.