The outcome of which was an approvals process for Higher Technical Qualifications, led by the Institute for Apprenticeships & Technical Education (The Institute). To be considered a Higher Technical Qualification, level 4 or 5 qualifications must be quality marked by the Institute to indicate their alignment to employer-led occupational standards. New or existing level 4 or 5 qualifications submitted to the Institute’s approvals process will receive a quality-mark if the qualification satisfies the approvals criteria.
The Pearson BTEC Higher Nationals in Computing are world class Level 4 and 5 qualifications which were developed in partnership with input from a wide range of stakeholders including employers, professional bodies and vendors. The qualifications develop students as professional, self-reflecting individuals able to meet the demands of employers in the computing sector and adapt to a constantly changing world.
The Level 4 provides a thorough grounding in computing principles that leads the student to a range of specialist progression pathways at Level 5 which relate to professions within the computing sector. The knowledge, understanding and skills that underpin the study of computing in the Pearson BTEC Higher Nationals in Computing give students the experience of the breadth and depth of the sector that will prepare them for further study or training.
By supporting the development of appropriate academic study skills and by mapping to units in a range of vendor accredited certificates, students can progress to a university degree or to further professional qualifications in specific computing areas.
When The Institute announced the first window for the approvals process would be ‘digital qualifications’ we submitted our BTEC Higher National Diploma in Computing. The approvals process was very much employer focussed with The Institute looking for close alignment to the employer-led occupational standards and evidence of employer engagement in the design and build of the qualification.
Through the process we were able to showcase how well employer skills and technical competencies have been thoughtfully embedded throughout the qualification as well as the specific skills to ensure students are being ‘occupationally’ trained to go straight into the workplace at an appropriate level. The approvals process was robust, but also iterative with detailed support to ensure that knowledge, skills and behaviours (KSBs) of the occupational standards were being met.
At the end of the process The Institute has recognised and approved the BTEC Higher National Diploma in Computing as a high-quality technical qualification which aligns to several digital occupational standards. As an approved qualifications The BTEC Higher Nationals in Computing will be designated as Higher Technical Qualifications and may be eligible for increased funding in the future.
With the added recognition from IfATE, the BTEC Higher Nationals in Computing offer a robust, challenging and vocationally driven curriculum, designed to meet the critical skills need of the current and future workforce.