May 2016 work-based learning and colleges update

19 May 2016

This month's update includes information on changes to the SIA licence application process and English language prerequisite requirements for learners taking SIA licence-linked qualifications.

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Changes to the SIA licence application process

As you know, the SIA is changing the way individuals apply for their licence to practise. These changes will also impact on training providers and how they help their learners apply for their licence.

This letter from the SIA details all of the changes and how they will affect training providers.

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In summary, the main changes are:

  • There will no longer be a bulk paper application facility
  • Learners must create an SIA individual account before they can apply for their licence
  • Training providers can register for an online SIA business account and access the Licence Pay Only service if they wish to help learners apply for their licence.

Learn more about the changes to the licensing system

English language prerequisite requirements for learners taking SIA licence-linked qualification

The SIA has recently updated its English language prerequisite requirement. The minimum acceptable level of ESOL qualification has increased from Entry 3 to Level 1.

As a reminder, all learners should, as a minimum, have language skills equivalent to the following:

  • A B1 level qualification on the Home Office’s list of recognised English tests and qualifications
  • An ESOL qualification at Level 1 on the Ofqual Register taken in England, Wales or Northern Ireland
  • An ESOL qualification at SCQF Level 5 awarded by the SQA and taken in Scotland
  • Function Skills Level 1 in English
  • SQA Core Skills in Communication at SCQF Level 5
  • Essential Skills Wales Communication Level 1.

Please be aware that we have identified an error in the Scottish qualifications’ specifications, where it incorrectly stated that learners may have SQA Core Skills in Communication at SCQF Levels 4, 5 or 6. This error is being corrected to reflect the guidance above - that is, SQA Core Skills in Communication at SCQF Level 5 (or above) is required. Updated specifications will be available on our website shortly.

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