NQ subject resources — Understanding Standards materials
Since 2014, SQA's Understanding Standards programme has been providing support to teachers and lecturers across Scotland by helping them strengthen their understanding of the standards required for assessment in National Qualifications. This material can also be used by Communities of Practice as a focus for professional dialogue in relation to national qualifications and their assessment.
We have a wide range of free, subject-specific, materials that can help you when assessing your candidates. These materials explain the standards and requirements for each assessment and include examples of work completed by candidates. We regularly review and update our existing materials, to ensure they remain relevant and useful, and we continue to publish new materials where needed.
- Candidate evidence and commentary materials: Published examples of candidate assessment evidence with a commentary from an SQA Senior Examiner that explains why the candidate has, or has not, achieved the standards required. Candidate evidence and commentary materials can help you become more familiar with the standards for assessment and can also be used for training and benchmarking purposes.
- Audio presentations and webinars: PowerPoint presentations with audio narration and video recordings of previous webinars. These give an overview of course assessments and the standards required or focus on specific components such as a question paper or coursework task.
- Video and audio recordings for performances and practical assessments: A range of video and audio recordings that demonstrate the standards for performance or practical-based assessment, showing examples of products produced by candidates or recordings of performances.
All this material remains relevant for session 2020-21 and will be particularly useful when teachers or lecturers are assessing their own candidates in their centres.
You can access these resources from our Understanding Standards website and also through the NQ subject pages of our main website. Additional secure material for some courses is available from our secure website, which you can access through your SQA co-ordinator.
Additional materials for session 2020-21
While our existing Understanding Standards materials remain relevant for session 2020-21, we are supplementing this with additional material to support teachers and lecturers with the changes to National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher assessment. So far, this has included:
- New candidate evidence and commentary materials.
- Webinar recordings and audio presentations that complement the National course modification summaries published in October 2020.
- Video resources that demonstrate how you can reduce the time required for assessment, for example, when candidates are doing coursework.
- A range of new resources to help you assess your candidates in a valid and reliable way that meets the standard required for the course.
Additional materials, along with new webinar sessions, will become available in the New Year. We will provide regular updates on any newly published materials and webinar sessions in SQA News.