Level 3 Diploma in Jewellery Design and Manufacturing

Level 3 Diploma in Jewellery Design and Manufacturing

SQA code: GN7A 57
Ofqual code: 603/2947/6
Total qualification time: 990 hours
Guided learning hours: 597

The Level 3 Diploma in Jewellery Design and Manufacturing is a new qualification which has been developed in collaboration with the British Academy of Jewellery. It provides a unique opportunity for learners to develop and perfect jewellery manufacturing and design skills while gaining a deep understanding of the wider industry.

Many job vacancies in the jewellery sector now require applicants to have an all-round knowledge of several aspects of the industry. Employers are looking for people who not only have good technical and creative design skills but also ‘softer skills’, such as communication and presentation skills. It is the inclusion of these aspects which makes this course distinct.

This qualification can be delivered by employers and training providers in England and Wales.

Qualification rationale and objectives

Rationale and purpose of this qualification

The Level 3 Diploma in Jewellery Design and Manufacturing is currently the most comprehensive and practical beginner’s jewellery course in the UK. It has been developed to ensure it meets the needs of the wider jewellery industry and, by having substantial contact with industry specialists and professional jewellers throughout the learning process, is the first step towards gaining the creative and technical skills required to become a qualified jeweller.

Learners who achieve this qualification can use it to gain employment, to progress in the industry, or to work towards another qualification (see Progression).


This qualification is supported by Creative and Cultural Skills which is the sector skills council (SSC) for the jewellery industry.

What does this qualification cover?

This is primarily a competence-based qualification in which learners will acquire the required knowledge and skills through both on-the-job experience and in a learning environment.

To achieve the Level 3 Diploma in Jewellery Design and Manufacturing learners need a total of 99 credits (990 hours of total qualification time). This comprises:

  • 71 credits from the 10 mandatory core units, plus
  • 28 credits from the mandatory units in either pathway 1 or pathway 2

The mandatory core units cover research, design and making — including CAD designs and CAM prototypes. There are also units on critical thinking skills and knowledge-based units relating to art history and the jewellery industry.

There are five additional mandatory units to complete if following pathway 1. These allow learners to develop and perfect a range of basic jewellery and silverware manufacturing skills — including cutting, filing, joining and polishing jewellery and silverware components.

Pathway 2 gives learners who may already have perfected the basic manufacturing skills an opportunity to develop more complex skills and knowledge. There are two mandatory units for this pathway: polishing and finishing silverware components to a commercial standard; and applying concepts of metallurgy to the production of precious metal objects.

Who is this qualification for?

This qualification is suitable for a wide range of learners including:

  • those with no prior experience of the industry
  • those who have already achieved a Level 2 qualification in Jewellery Manufacturing
  • people in employment within the jewellery sector who wish to enhance their career prospects
  • individuals who wish to start their own business
  • adults wanting a change of career

Learners can build on the skills and knowledge gained from achieving this qualification when working towards another qualification or through gaining employment (see ‘Progression’).


Entry to this qualification is at the discretion of the centre. However, it is an ideal progression route for those who have already achieved a Level 2 qualification in Jewellery Manufacturing.

There are no specific skills, knowledge understanding or any other qualifications that must be achieved in order to start this qualification. However, learners should have the potential and opportunity to gain this qualification successfully.


This qualification does not currently form a component of an apprenticeship but there is the potential for it to align with future Trailblazer programmes


Learners may progress from the Level 3 Diploma in Jewellery Design and Manufacturing to a range of qualifications at Level 4. This includes the newly developed Level 4 Diploma in Jewellery Design and Manufacturing which is the first stage of a three-year learning programme incorporating Levels 4–6.

The Level 3 Diploma in Jewellery Design and Manufacturing qualification can also lead directly into employment within the jewellery industry in a variety of roles including: jewellery designer, jobbing jeweller, goldsmith or silversmith. The qualification also includes critical thinking, presentation and marketing skills, so it is ideal for anyone wishing to start their own business.

What approvals are needed?

Centres must 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.

Where can you take this course

Qualification content and delivery tools

Qualification structure

Group award code: GN7A 57 (99 credits)

The qualification requires the learner to complete 10 mandatory core units (71 credits) plus 28 credits from the mandatory units in either pathway 1 or pathway 2.

For detailed information on the structure of this qualification, please refer to the qualification structure (958 KB).

Unit specifications

Unit specifications for this qualification are available on the Unit search.

How to assess

Learner portfolio