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Non-technical qualifications: Non-technical qualifications are qualifications which are not based on the occupational standards. These include:

  • Alternative academic qualifications
  • Technical progression qualifications, which support progression to a level 3 technical qualification that is not a T Level .
  • Academic progression qualifications, which support progression to a level 3 academic qualification.
  • T Level foundation qualifications, which support progression to a T Level.


Occupation: An occupation is skilled employment which has similar requirements across employers and workplaces.


Occupational Maps: Occupational Maps were created by IfATE and group occupations with related knowledge, skills and behaviours into 15 technical routes, making it easier to see the opportunities for career progression within that particular route. Most routes have been split into several pathways. The maps provide a useful guide to show the technical education options available for employers as well as individuals and training providers. These routes date back to the Sainsbury report, published in 2016.


Occupational Standards: Occupational standards are listed in the occupational map, each occupational standard provides the knowledge, skills and behaviours (KSBs) that employers have said they need to gain occupational competence in that role. These are co-designed with employers and approved by IfATE.


The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual): The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) regulates qualifications, examinations, and assessments in England. It was set up in April 2010 under the Apprenticeships, Skills, Children and Learning Act 2009 and is also covered by the Education Act 2011. Ofqual is a non-ministerial government department with jurisdiction in England. See the Ofqual website for further information.


Personal, Social and Employability (PSE) Qualifications: Qualifications, from entry level to level 1, which deliver personal and social skills, employability skills and/or independent living and life skills. 


Phases: Refers to the process of reforming post 16 qualifications at level 3 and below. This process is divided into three phases.

  • Phase 1 – removing funding at levels 3 and below due to low or no enrolments.
  • Phase 2 – removing funding from level 3 qualifications due to overlap with T Levels.
  • Phase 3 – introducing new funding approval criteria for technical and non-technical qualifications at level 3 and below and removing funding from qualifications that do not meet those criteria.

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