May update from the SQA

New Guide

A guide to the new qualifications is now available for parents and carers. It is available to download from the dedicated section of the SQA website.

There is also a guide for young people and updated guides for teachers and employers.

On their website, you can find other useful resources, such as the ‘Myth buster’ and ‘Jargon buster’.

Final documents for the new National 2 to Higher Courses are available. The final documents will be used by teachers and lecturers to prepare to teach each new Course. The documents are of interest to parents and carers, as they give information about the skills and knowledge young people will gain.

Use the subject drop-down menu on the website to find the documents for each subject.

Education Scotland has also published a suite of practical advice and guidance to support practitioners in preparing for implementing key aspects of the new qualifications.

Advanced Higher
The draft Course Specifications for the new Advanced Higher qualifications are now published. To find them, use the subject drop-down menu to find the documents for each subject. For more general information, use Advanced Higher.

The SQA continue to seek our feedback on these documents as the qualifications are developed. We can give our feedback via Have Your Say.

The new Advanced Highers will be introduced in 2015/16.


SQA has developed new Awards for young people. These cover work from different subject areas and are shorter than traditional Courses. They recognise success across different levels of difficulty, meaning they’re suitable for young people of all abilities. They will be marked and assessed internally and do not have any external assessments or exams. The final documents for these are also now available.

Next Steps

Assessment support

Specimen question papers and other assessment resources for National 2 to National 5 qualifications are being developed and will be available by April 2013.

Assessment materials for Higher will be published by April 2014.

CfE Events

To continue to support practitioners with the implementation of the new qualifications, SQA is hosting a further 10 Curriculum Area events in September 2012 to update teachers on the latest developments.

Between October 2012 and March 2013 we will host a series of subject-specific events, which every principal subject teacher will be invited to attend.

Our CfE Liaison team are continuing to support local events including those with parents.

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