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Rebuilding Construction and the Built Environment sector qualifications

EAL the awarding body of the Semta Group are proud to be a part of a monumental revolution in the delivery of Construction and Built Environment sector related qualifications in Wales.

As part of a consortium with City & Guilds, we are reshaping and reframing the existing methods of training and learning within the sector. Taking a streamlined approach, the current selection of qualifications will be simplified from hundreds of qualifications down to eight new ones.

This answers issues raised within the ‘Building the Future‘ Report from Qualifications Wales on the Construction and Built Environment sector published in February 2018. Key findings from the report revealed that, at the time, the offering for the sector was ‘complex, with repetition and unclear routes’. It also found that qualifications were not always meeting ‘the needs of the economy’ and that quality assurance was, at times, ‘inconsistent and poor quality’.

Under the new system, such factors will become obsolete as the new approach to assessment meets the needs of not only sector employers but also those of the learner. For people planning to study Construction and Built Environment sector subjects in Wales, these changes represent a new, unprecedented, more flexible approach to study.

The EAL and City & Guilds consortium will work alongside the independent statutory body and regulator, Qualifications Wales to bring about the landmark changes. These will involve the design and delivery of post-16 Foundation, Progression and Apprenticeship qualifications. The post-16 qualifications will include an overarching Foundation qualification in Construction and the Built Environment, and Progression and Apprenticeship qualifications in Building Services Engineering and Construction. These will be available for first teaching from September 2021.

Alison Parkes, Managing Director of EAL, said:

“As the leading specialist awarding organisation in engineering we are immensely proud, in partnership with City & Guilds, to have been appointed by Qualifications Wales to support them in the reshaping of the skills landscape for Construction and the Built Environment – a pivotal sector in the Welsh economy.

We are especially looking forward to working with Qualifications Wales and key stakeholders, to bring their vision and expectations to life. Through the development of qualifications for these crucial and essential industries, we recognise the important part we play in the journey of those who wish to have a career in the sector”.

As the specialist skills partner and awarding organisation for industry, it’s important to EAL that the new style qualifications are industry approved. Representatives from the Construction and Built Environment sector have already contributed to the development phase of the 8 new qualifications and will continue to do so as they become a regular part of the syllabus.

Gareth Williams, Standards and Qualifications Policy Manager for the CITB in Wales, said:

“As a stakeholder in the Construction and Built Environment review, CITB is looking forward to working with City & Guilds and EAL to develop new, up-to-date qualifications that will benefit both learners and the industry in Wales. The new qualifications will broaden learners’ horizons, by encouraging more employers to take an active role in developing the workforce of the future in Wales”.

Ed Evans, Director of the Civil Engineering Contractors’ Association for Wales, added, “Qualifications Wales’s engagement with the sector has been really strong. That means that this starts to be led by the sector, rather than being led by educationalists.”

What does this mean for learners?

Most of the new qualifications will be available for learners to take from September 2021. Learners who have already started a course will complete the qualifications that they have already signed up for. Please see the Frequently Asked Questions on the Qualifications Wales website for more details.

To find out more give us a call on 01923 652400 or contact customercare@eal.org.uk.

Talk to us about it in person.

The development team at City & Guilds and EAL will be hosting events across Wales in the last two weeks of August. This is an excellent opportunity for the sector stakeholders within Wales to inform the redesign of these qualifications with their sector insight.

The events will take the form of interactive workshops, we want to take this opportunity to gain your feedback and insight to inform the development of these new qualifications.

The day will cover;

  • The background and outcomes from the Building the Futures sector report.
  • The initial design of the new 16-19 and apprenticeship landscape introducing the five new vocational qualifications.
  • An opportunity to reflect upon and feedback on how initial content will be built into qualification and assessment content.
  • An introduction to the new assessment approach and scoping of how these assessment methodologies will be used to design assessments that ensure industry entrants have the skills, knowledge and understanding that is needed.
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