With our quality assurance process for all BTEC higher-level programmes on the QCF, we can be sure our centres are meeting national standards.  

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We work with centres delivering BTEC levels 4 to 7 on the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF) to guarantee that they have effective quality assurance processes in place to review programme delivery, and that the outcomes of assessment meet national standards. 

Once your centre has been approved to deliver BTEC programmes, we’ll work with you to ensure the approval criteria continue to be applied consistently.

We will appoint External Examiners (EEs), and give all centres the opportunity to present evidence that their systems continue to be suitable and are used to carry out the required assessment functions.

This includes reviewing:

  • the consistent application of policies affecting the learner
  • registrations
  • appeals
  • effective internal examination
  • standardisation processes.

Where appropriate, centres may present their operational evidence within a recognised code of practice (for example, that of the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education). In these cases, we may independently confirm that the procedures are operating within our quality guidelines, and whether or not it is appropriate to continue using them. 

If our monitoring process identifies any problems with the effectiveness of your centre’s assessment systems, we’ll support you in taking appropriate measures to improve them.

If you have any questions about the monitoring process, please contact your Curriculum Development Manager. 

All internal assessment outcomes for BTEC qualifications at levels 4 to 7 on the QCF are subject to an independent assessment review by an External Examiner appointed by us.

The External Examiner will:

  • confirm that internal assessment meets national standards and allows certification, or
  • make recommendations to improve the quality of assessment outcomes before certification is released, or
  • make recommendations about the centre’s ability to continue to be approved for the qualifications in question.

In the unlikely event that a centre is no longer able to quality assure programme delivery or assessment standards, we reserve the right to withdraw either qualification or centre approval. However, we will only take these steps if all other options have been thoroughly explored and exhausted over a period of time.

We have introduced an annual student survey for all of your UK Higher National students, which will form an important part of the HN quality cycle.

The survey has been designed to provide valuable and quantifiable feedback on Pearson BTEC Higher Nationals to:

  • inform the future design of the qualifications
  • triangulate other aspects of the quality assurance mechanisms
  • support the development of resources for Pearson BTEC Higher National students globally.

The survey questionnaire has been designed with input from Ipsos MORI, a leading market research company in the UK, and we expect that centres will encourage students to engage with the survey so that we gather as much accurate data as possible to improve the qualifications.

As part of our responsibilities as the awarding organisation for the suite and in response to the requirements of the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) regarding student experience, the results from the survey will provide us with data to better inform the future of our BTEC Higher National qualifications and their efficacy.

Pearson has a responsibility to consider and act on information received. We will seek to address what may be common issues, and where necessary we'll provide appropriate support to both students and our providers.

The 2017 BTEC Higher Nationals Annual Student Survey is now closed until Q1 2018.


The Annual Programme Monitoring Review is a written annual review form that provides an opportunity for providers to analyse and reflect on the previous teaching year. By working in collaboration with providers, the information can be used by Pearson to further enhance the quality assurance of the Pearson BTEC Higher National programmes, by sharing good practice identifying problems and supporting providers. Further guidance and the form used for this purpose in the UK can be found at APMR Guidance Document and APMR Form.

Please Note: Only online submissions will be accepted and the deadline for 2016/17 APMR submissions is midnight (GMT) 30 November 2017 

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Pearson has revised this guidance document to outline quality and assessment processes for Higher Nationals wherever they are delivered in the world.

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With the move of our qualifications from the Qualification Credit Framework (QCF) to the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF), each centre who wishes to continue to deliver our BTEC Higher National qualifications will need to go through the re-approval process. We will contact centres individually about this process which will involve the Head of each centre signing the declaration form below. 

Please note that from September 2018 all new student registration on BTEC Higher Nationals will have to be on the new RQF framework programmes.

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Please note If you would like to register to use the online version of the APMR, please email hnqa@pearson.com.