Clarification of our planned approach for Standards Verification in 2021 | Pearson qualifications

Clarification of our planned approach for Standards Verification in 2021

1 March 2021

We would like to follow up our communication on 25 February and clarify our planned approach for working with you on the Standards Verification process this year.

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As noted in our communicationOfqual guidance states that all qualifications issued this year will need to be Quality Assured. The process for BTEC quality assurance is well established and our approach will be to continue working with you collaboratively to support this requirement.   

To fulfil the requirements on quality assurance, Standards Verification will continue in a different format and with a different core purpose this year - to support the Qualification-level Teacher Assessed Grade (TAG) process. In terms of approach, we can confirm that:

  • Where BTEC qualifications share a core purpose of progression, our priority is to ensure that learners are not disadvantaged, and that they can progress to further study, higher education and / or employment
  • In line with General Qualifications, it will be the Qualification-level TAG that will be the basis of results issued to certificating learners this year, and additional guidance will be provided to centres to support them to arrive at this Qualification-level grade.
  • Much of the evidence that will be used to inform the Qualification-level TAG will be based on completed, or partially completed internal assessments.
  • Where units are completed or partially completed, we will work with you and the Standards Verifiers to give feedback on unit-level standards application, which we believe will support centres when they go on to make their Qualification-level TAG judgements.  To reflect the change of purpose, only three learners from one unit will be selected for review.

What will Standards Verifiers (SVs) be able to do?

  • SVs will be providing feedback on teacher unit-level assessment only.
  • This feedback can be used to support centres to ascertain their accuracy in the application of unit-level criteria.
  • SVs are able to provide both sector specific expertise relating to internal assessment, and support for centres on the application of unit-level standards.
  • SVs will not be advising centres on their Qualification-level Teacher Assessed Grades, as these judgements will have to take into account other forms of evidence.

Other ways in which your Standards Verifier (SV) can support you: 

  • Discuss and confirm reduced assessment options and possible adaptations available for the programme
  • Review assessment plans 
  • Share good practice in delivery and assessment activities
  • Offer advice on alternative resources and approaches to content delivery 
  • Suggest alternative approaches when gathering assessment evidence 
  • Provide feedback on assignment briefs, assessment decisions and internal verification

We are in the process of finalising our guidance for centres to support the Qualification-level ‘Teacher Assessed Grade’ process and we will be issuing this next week. In the meantime, we hope that the above will help to answer some of the key questions raised as a result of our announcement on 25 February.  

For specific advice and questions on our qualifications, the Subject Advisors are available to support you. As a Quality Nominee you can reach out to the Pearson Quality Advisor team who is here to support you. Please use the Pearson Support Portal to contact us or call us on 0344 463 2535. Our phone lines are monitored from 8am-4pm, Monday-Friday.

We know that this is an extremely busy time for you and your team as you prepare for an 8 March, 2021 return of learners. Please be assured that we will continue to work with you collaboratively through these challenging times and that we are here to support you.

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