qualifications update from the SQA

New Qualifications – August Update

New Guide

A guide about the new qualifications is now available for parents and carers. It is available to download from the dedicated section of our website – http://www.sqa.org.uk/cfeforparents

On our website, you can find other useful resources such as our Mythbuster and Jargonbuster.


Information about the new qualifications for Higher Education institutions is now available on our website. Visit http://www.sqa.org.uk/cfeforuniversities

Advanced Higher

The draft Course Specifications for the new Advanced Higher qualifications were published at the end of May.

Use the subject drop-down menu at http://www.sqa.org.uk/curriculumforexcellenceto find the documents for each subject.

Find out more about Advanced Higher – http://www.sqa.org.uk/advancedhigher

We continue to seek your feedback on these documents as the qualifications are developed.

You can give your feedback via Have Your Say – http://www.sqa.org.uk/haveyoursay

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

Assessment Overviews

Assessment overviews have now been published on our website for every Course from National 2 to National 5.

The assessment overviews describe the Course and Unit assessment support materials that we will produce for teachers and lecturers in session 2012/13 by subject and level.

Use the subject drop-down menu at http://www.sqa.org.uk/curriculumforexcellenceto find the assessment overviews for each subject.

In response to practitioner requests for these materials as early as possible, the Scottish Government has provided additional funding to SQA. This has allowed us to bring forward the publication of these materials. The first package of Unit assessment support will be available in October (as opposed to the original February milestone) and further packages will follow in February and April 2013.

Each package of Unit assessment will provide practitioners with materials that cover the requirements of the Course. It will also provide information on how to gather evidence and make assessment judgments. The materials will be ready to use, but centres will be free to develop their own assessment packages. The Unit assessment support will be published in a secure, electronic format.

The specimen question papers will be published on our website by end of February 2013. All specimen Coursework will be available by 30 April 2013 in a phased release on our website.

Course and Unit assessment support for Highers will be available by the end of April 2014.

Use the subject drop-down menu at http://www.sqa.org.uk/curriculumforexcellenceto find the assessment overviews for each subject.

CfE Events

SQA’s next Curriculum Area Events will be held in September 2012. These events will provide a range of information and advice on the design and development of the new qualifications as well as an update on progress in each curriculum area. The events also allow delegates to discuss the final Course and Unit Specifications and Course and Unit delivery for a particular subject in the curriculum area.

The Subject Implementation Events, being run from October 2012 to March 2013, will give subject practitioners an overview of the assessment support materials that will be produced ahead of the new National Courses starting in August 2013 – National 2 to National 5. There will be around 150 events across the country, giving subject staff the opportunity to find out more about the delivery and assessment of the new qualifications, National 2 to National 5. This will include Unit assessment guidance, specimen question papers, coursework and marking instructions.

Our CfE Liaison team are continuing to support local events: http://www.sqa.org.uk/cfeteam


Education Scotland this week have launched a national campaign which aims to help parents and carers to develop a better understanding of Curriculum for Excellence and to become more involved in their child’s learning.

Parentzoneis a website dedicated to providing parents and carers with the most up-to-date information about their child’s education. It provides practical advice and suggests ways in which parents and carers can be involved in their child’s learning, as well as supplying essential information on features of Curriculum for Excellence. Get involved today by visiting Parentzone.

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