Support for FE colleges

We continue to work with Colleges Scotland and individual colleges, to put arrangements in place to recognise learner achievement in as fair a way as possible.

HNC/HND, PDA, NC, NPA, Skills for Work and NQ freestanding units

Working with Colleges Scotland, we have created guidance to support college staff in gathering evidence and making assessment decisions.

SQA and Colleges Scotland assessment guidance

We have also provided SQA Coordinators with subject-specific guidance for HNC/HNDs and PDAs. This includes areas where changes to assessment are not possible, for example Dental Nursing and Social Care.

Gathering evidence - assessment materials/activities

Please note that while flexibility around assessment may allow open-book instead of closed-book activities, course teams should use their centre-devised assessments in the first instance.

If you wish to use alternative assessments, available on our secure site, you must inform us at

Regulated Qualifications

We are working with SQA Accreditation and other regulatory bodies to consider if adjustments can be made for some regulated qualifications, including Scottish Vocational Qualifications (SVQs) and licence to practise qualifications.

Quality assurance

Colleges should continue to use their own quality assurance processes to verify internal assessment outcomes and certification.

To allow for the change in approach for this session, internal quality assurance panels have been introduced to complement and strengthen the course team model. This will ensure a consistent approach to judgements and fairness for learners.

Please retain all assessment evidence of course team decisions and internal quality assurance panels, until 31 December 2020.

HNVQ - Qualification verification

We are making a change to our Candidate Evidence Retention policy. Centres must now keep candidate evidence for six months after the resulting date of each qualification.  

Read more about the changes

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