News Archive

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007


September 2012 Update

Legislation Update

The Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Act, 2012 provides for a new integrated agency, the qualifications and quality assurance Authority of Ireland, replacing FETAC, HETAC, NQAI and IUQB. The President
signed the Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Bill 2011 on 22nd July last and it has now been published as the Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Act (2012) View Act.

The qualifications and quality assurance authority of Ireland will come into operation once an authority has been appointed and an establishment day designated by the Minister. It is anticipated that this establishment day will be a date early autumn 2012. At that time, FETAC, HETAC and NQAI will be legally dissolved and the relevant section of the Universities Act will be repealed whereby the external quality assurance of the universities performed to date by IUQB will become the responsibility of the new agency.

August 2012 Update

FETAC relocating

FETAC is currently relocating. All correspondence should be sent to our temporary address 5th Floor, Jervis House, Jervis Street, Dublin 1. Should you wish to contact us please do so via our 'Contact Us' facility on our website www.fetac.ie. Alternatively, you may wish to contact us by telephone on 01 8659500.

We apologise for any inconvenience that you may experience during our relocation period.

July 2012 Update

Progression through CAO with level 5 and 6 awards - scoring update
A new scoring system has been agreed for all level 5 and 6 awards, providing access through CAO to the first year of programmes leading to awards at levels 6, 7 and 8. This will be applied from 2013. For more information, click here.

Legislation Update - Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Bill, 2011
The Qualifications and Quality Assurance Bill, 2011 completed the fourth and final stages in the Dáil on 5 July 2012. A number of amendments were agreed in the Dáil. These amendments mainly concerned joint awards and an increase in Board membership to 10 persons, to include two representatives of learners. The Bill will next be considered by the Seanad at fourth (report) stage. View details and summary of amendments on Interim website.

June 2012 Update


Managing the transition to the Common Awards System (CAS)
Providers and centres can use the following information notes to manage the change to the Common Awards System.

Level 3 and Level 4 information note (June 2012)
Level 5 and Level 6 information note (June 2012)

They include information on:

• The schedule for publication and deactivation of awards
• The process for claiming exemptions where learners have previous FETAC certification
• Examples of time lines for the transition to the CAS

Note that:

• Only CAS awards are available at level 3 therefore providers must have validated programmes if offering these
awards
• All existing level 4 awards will be deactivated on 12 December 2012
• Some level 5 and level 6 awards will be deactivated on 12 December 2012. The balance will remain active until
December 2013
• Requests for information regarding the status of particular awards should be sent via the ‘contact us’ page

Further versions of the information notes will be published as information is updated.

May 2012 Update


Bill completes second stage in Dáil
The Bill completed the second stage in the Dáil on 23 May. The debate on the Bill commenced on 22 May and concluded 23 May - click here for 22 May debate, here and also here for 23 May debate. The Bill was then referred to the Select Committee on Select Committee on Education and Skills.

The Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Bill 2011 passed by Seanad
The Bill was passed by the Seanad on 10 May 2012. For key stages, amendments made and text of the amended Bill click here. The Bill will now proceed to the Dáil.

New Appointments (Designate)
At its meeting on 22 March 2012, the interim board of the qualifications and quality assurance authority of Ireland (QQAI), following the recommendations of the selection board appointed for the purpose, approved the appointments of Ms. Barbara Kelly as Head of Industry and External Partnerships designate, Ms. Grainne Cullen as Head of Planning designate, Ms. Trish O'Brien as Head of Provider Relations designate, Dr. Bryan Maguire as Head of Qualifications Services designate, Ms. Karena Maguire as Head of Quality Assurance Services designate and Dr. Anna Murphy as Head of Strategic Analysis designate of QQAI.

Barbara is currently serving as Director of Awards, Standards and Policy Development and Gráinne serves as Head of Strategy and Planning at the Further Education and Training Awards Council (FETAC). Anna is currently serving as Director of Research and Strategic Development and Trish serves as Head of Framework Implementation and Qualifications Recognition with the National Qualifications Authority of Ireland (NQAI). Bryan is currently serving as Director of Academic Affairs and Karena serves as Head of Institutional Review and Provider Registration at the Higher Education and Training Awards Council (HETAC)

On 3 May 2012, The Chief Executive designate confirmed the appointment of Mr. Eamonn Collins as Corporate Business Manager designate and Mr. Andrew Bridgett as Procurement, Risk and Compliance Manager designate of QQAI.

Eamonn is currently serving as Corporate Business Manager with the National Qualifications Authority (NQAI) and Andrew serves as Corporate Services Manager at the Higher Education and Training Awards Council (HETAC).

FETAC Debt Collection Policy
FETAC has prepared a formal Debt Collection Policy and Procedures to provide a structured framework for the timely collection of monies due, which is an important element of financial management. FETAC’s standard credit terms are 30 days from receipt of invoice. The policy provides for a graduated system of action, including legal action to enforce recovery. It should be noted that while many aspects of the procedures have already been in place over the past number of years the introduction of a structured policy and procedures puts the procedures and intended sanctions, where necessary, on a formal basis.

The Debt Collection Policy includes the sanction of suspension of access to certification, following notification and due process, for those providers who continue to have outstanding debts to FETAC. This sanction mirrors that included in Providers Quality Assurance Agreement for breaches of that agreement. The ultimate penalty for continuing non-payment is provider de-registration, similar to that for continuing serious non-compliance of the Provider Quality Assurance Agreement.

While FETAC is confident it should not have to invoke such sanctions, FETAC will implement sanctions where necessary, both in the interest of fairness to those providers who pay on time and to ensure timely collection of monies due.

FETAC would like to take the opportunity to thank those providers and centres who continue to pay make payment within the standard credit terms of 30 days.

Limited Expansion of the FETAC External Authenticator Panel
The FETAC external authenticator panel is a resource for all FETAC registered providers. As part of their quality assured assessment and authentication process, all providers are required to select authenticators from the panel to authenticate their results prior to submission to FETAC for certification.

FETAC now wishes to expand the panel in very specific fields of learning relating to apprenticeships. This will ensure that the requirements of registered providers for authenticators with the subject matter expertise to authenticate all awards are met. The FETAC awards directory gives details of the awards in each field of learning. This has now closed.

Update of Provider Quality Assurance and Registration
The Qualifications and Quality Assurance Bill was published in July 2011. The Bill provides for the amalgamation of the National Qualifications of Ireland (NQAI), the Higher Education and Awards Council (HETAC) and the Further Education and Awards Council (FETAC) into a new agency named The Qualifications and Quality Assurance Authority of Ireland (QQAI). The new agency will also take responsibility for the external quality assurance review of the universities, a function which is currently performed by the Irish University Quality Assurance Board (IUQB). When QQAI is established FETAC as an organisation will be dissolved.

In order to prepare for the dissolution of FETAC, the transition of functions to the new agency and the reassignment of resources across the new organisation, FETAC Provider Registration has closed and a number of other services have been suspended, pending amalgamation.

The establishment of the new agency is contingent on the enactment of the legislation and the subsequent determination of a specific establishment date by the Minister. It is anticipated that the legislation will be enacted by summer 2012. Follow this link for progress on the legislation.

The new agency will facilitate the achievement of a coherent and consistently applied system of qualifications and quality assurance in education and training nationally. It will maintain, promote and develop the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ), working with Institutions and providers to ensure that greater opportunities will be available to learners nationally for participation in high quality education and training.

Aspirant providers are advised that, following the establishment date, QQAI will implement integrated policies on provider registration across further and higher education and training. In anticipation of the establishment date, aspirant providers should familiarise themselves with the draft provisions set out in the 2011 Bill. Aspirant providers should also familiarise themselves with the full range of options for offering awards that are part of the NFQ, including options for direct provision, linked provision, collaborative provision, second provider arrangements and alignment processes.

The wider landscape of further education and training is also undergoing a period of significant transformation. On 22 July, 2011, the Government announced its intention to establish a new authority to coordinate and fund Further Education and Training (FET) in Ireland called SOLAS. As part of the change, the FAS Training Division is set to transfer to the VECs and those VECs will report to the new authority SOLAS in respect of FET. Furthermore, the existing 33 VECs are being rationalised into 16 Local Education and Training Boards (LETBs). These changes are likely to have implications for the structures and provision of further education and training in the longer term.


April 2012 Update

Update of Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Bill, 2011
The Qualifications and Quality Assurance Bill 2011 passed the Committee stage of the Seanad on 29 March 2012 and is now at Report Stage. View amendments and summary of amendments on interim website.

March 2012 Update
New Awards Published
The following new awards have been published and are available to registered providers to use once they have a programme validated:

5M3471 Beauty Therapy
6M3479 Beauty Therapy
6M3566 Drama

6S3153 Life and Workplace Coaching
6S3372 Training and Development
6M3115 Information, Advice and Advocacy


Note: Providers must have attended a validation briefing before requesting an application form from validation@fetac.ie

Contacting us by Email
As part of a coordinated and integrated approach to the delivery of customer service, FETAC has further enhanced its call management system. All contact emails should now be sent through the contact page on our website www.fetac.ie. You will automatically receive a call number and we will respond to your query in a speedy manner. The email address information@fetac.ie has now been withdrawn.

The 3rd Annual Forum of EQAVET
The 3rd Annual Forum of the European Quality Assurance in VET (EQAVET) network will take place on 29 and 30 March 2012 Helsingør, Denmark. FETAC will be represented by Rhona Dempsey, Head of Policy and Research.

This Annual Forum is of particular importance as it marks the final year of the network’s current work programme and should anticipate its priorities and strategies for the future. In this context it will provide an opportunity to reflect on the achievements so far, the experiences of Member States in developing their national approaches to the implementation of the EQAVET Recommendation, and to decide on the most appropriate ways to support Member States and national reference points over the coming years. For more information please visit www.eqavet.eu

February 2012 Update
Managing the transition to the Common Awards System (CAS)
Providers and centres can use the following information notes to manage the change to the Common Awards System.

Level 3 and Level 4 information note (Jan 2012)
Level 5 and Level 6 information note (Jan 2012)

They include information on:

  •  The common awards published to date and the existing awards which they replace
  •  The schedule for publication and deactivation of awards
  •  The process for claiming exemptions where learners have previous FETAC certification
  •  Examples of timelines for the transition to the CAS

Note that:

  •  Only CAS awards are available at level 3 therefore providers must have validated programmes if offering
      these awards
  •  All existing level 4 awards will be deactivated on 12 December 2012
  •  Some level 5 and level 6 awards will be deactivated on 12 December 2012. The balance will remain active  until December 2013
  •  Requests for information regarding the status of particular awards should be sent through the contact page on
    our website www.fetac.ie

QQAI Appointments (designate)
At its meeting of 1st February 2012, the interim Board of the qualifications and quality assurance authority of Ireland (QQAI), following the recommendations of the selection Board appointed for the purpose, approved the appointments of Ms. Claire Byrne as Head of Corporate Affairs designate and Mr. Ultan Tuite as Head of Audit and Procurement designate of QQAI. Claire is currently serving as Director of Corporate Affairs and Communications with the National Qualifications Authority of Ireland (NQAI) and Ultan serves as the Director of Corporate Services at the Further Education and Training Awards Council (FETAC).

January 2012 Update
Expressions of interest for QQAI Board
The closing date for expressions of interest for positions for the QQAI board was 10 January 2012. Application through the website www.publicjobs.ie has now closed.

Expressions of interest for QQAI Board
The Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairí Quinn T.D., is seeking expressions of interest from suitably qualified and experienced persons for positions for the board of QQAI. View details.

2011

December 2011 Update
FETAC Christmas Greeting

The Chief Executive of FETAC, Dr Padraig Walsh, staff and outgoing Council thank all our partners, learners and award holders for their support and commitment to high quality achievement in further education and training over 2011.

FETAC wishes you success and happiness for Christmas and for 2012. We look forward to working together with you towards the establishment of the new national qualifications and quality assurance authority.

View our card produced by Ina Harte, Level 2 award holder from Cope Foundation Clonakilty.

Interim website for qualifications and quality assurance Ireland
An interim website for qualifications and quality assurance Ireland is available here. The website provides accurate information to learners, providers and the public on progress towards amalgamation.

October 2011 Update

Revised Procedures for the Protection of Learners (PFL)

FETAC registered providers who intend to offer programmes of 3 months duration or more on a commercial and profit making basis, are required to put arrangements for the protection of learners in place and agree them with FETAC.

The procedures for protection for learners have been revised.  The updated FETAC Protection for Learners (PFL) procedures 2011 further clarify the protection for learner requirements and will ensure that there are sufficient safeguards for learners undertaking programmes of learning leading to FETAC awards.  For further information, see Protection for Learners.

Providers who have existing Protection for Learners (PFL) arrangements in place are required to update their arrangements to meet the revised requirements.  Arrangements must be updated and agreed with FETAC by 1 December 2011. After this date, all existing arrangements will be null and void.

September 2011 Update

Update of Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Bill, 2011
The Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Bill 2011 passed through the Second Stage debate in the Seanad, on Tuesday 20 September 2011.


The Committee Stage of the Bill will take place on Thursday, 29 September 2011.


Please view here.

Update on migration of awards to Common Awards system
August 2011 Update on Awards Plan

Awards for Consultation

The following award is currently in the consultation phase and feedback is being sought by 3 October 2011:

The following minor award has just been released as part of the Level 5 Certificate in Hairdressing. Feedback is being sought by 20 October 2011:

August 2011 Update

FETAC Key Dates and Information 2012
FETAC’s Key Dates and Information 2012 leaflet containing important dates and information for providers offering programmes leading to FETAC awards has been published. Copies will be posted to centres shortly.

From 2012, six certification periods will be available to all providers. Certification periods now reflect the closing date of each certification period, i.e. for February, April, June, August, October and December.

Managing the transition to the Common Awards System (CAS)
An update to the information note is available to assist existing providers to manage the change to the Common Awards System. A particular point to note is that all existing level 3 awards will be deactivated after 5 December 2011 and no certification will be available on these awards after that date. The next version of the information note will be published at the end of September after the next series of publications of CAS awards. The publication and deactivation timetable is found on page 4 of the information note.

July 2011 Update

Publication of Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Bill, 2011

FETAC, along with the NQAI, HETAC and IUQB, today welcome the publication of the Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training ) Bill, 2011. The legislation provides for a new single national agency, Qualifications and Quality Assurance Ireland (QQAI), replacing FETAC, HETAC, NQAI and IUQB. It is anticipated that QQAI will be established in 2012. View bill

Alternatively main elements of the Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Bill 2011 can be viewed here.


Dr. Padraig Walsh, Chief Executive Designate said, “This legislation will amalgamate the existing national qualifications and quality assurance bodies for learners into one new agency. QQAI will be responsible for a wide range of functions, and will provide a more integrated, efficient and coherent range of services to learners across the further and higher education and training sectors to the highest international standards.”


QQAI will be responsible for building on Ireland’s reputation for quality in education and training and will be strongly positioned to highlight and promote best practice throughout the educational and training system.

The National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) will be further developed by QQAI, which will in time lead to greater opportunities for learners. The currency of all awards on the Framework remains guaranteed.


Dr. Walsh looks “forward, over the coming months and years, to building QQAI into an organisation serving learners and the public; building on the many achievements of the individual agencies and united by the National Framework of Qualifications.”


FETAC looks forward to the amalgamation and working with our stakeholders in building on the work to date and in the performance of the functions of the new amalgamated body.

Awards for Consultation

The following awards are currently in the consultation phase and feedback is being sought by 18 August 2011:

  •  Level 5 Certificate - Body and Beauty Therapy
  •  Level 5 Certificate - Sports Surface Operations
  •  Level 6 Certificate - Body and Beauty Therapy
  •  Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate - Farm Expansion Planning
  •  Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate - Commercial Gas Safety
  •  Level 6 Specific Purpose Certificate - Retail Sale and Supply of Animal Remedies

Awards Analysis 2010

FETAC is continually engaged in efforts to upgrade and improve the annual awards dataset. The latest awards analysis was completed in June 2011 and supplements the data for 2010. It provides headline data and trend data and reveals further detail according to Award Type and Level, Fields of Learning, Region and Age.

June 2011 Update

Report on Providers' Activities 2010

FETAC has published its annual report on provider activities. This report includes information on new providers registered and de-registered, programmes validated and the outcome of monitoring and review activities. The report replaces FETAC's Annual Monitoring Report and sets out the extent to which registered providers are complying with FETAC's Quality Framework.  View report.

Expansion of the FETAC External Authenticator Panel
The FETAC external authenticator panel is a resource for all FETAC registered providers. As part of their quality assured assessment and authentication process, all providers are expected to select authenticators from the panel to authenticate their results prior to submission to FETAC for certification.

FETAC now wishes to expand the panel.This will ensure that the requirements of registered providers for authenticators with the subject matter expertise to authenticate all awards are met. Please view authenticators.

New common awards and programme validation briefing

Attendance is mandatory for providers, prior to submitting a programme for validation. Programmes leading to new Common Awards must be validated before the programme is offered to learners. View briefings.

Dr Padraig Walsh, CEO of FETAC from 11 June 2011

The Further Education and Training Awards Council is pleased to announce Dr Padraig Walsh as its new Chief Executive, from 11 June 2011.


Dr Walsh has played a leading role in the development of a culture of quality within the higher education sector for over twenty years, first within Dublin City University and then as Chief Executive of the Irish Universities Quality Board (IUQB). He is currently a member of the Scotland Committee of the UK Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA), the Scientific Advisory Board of the Centre of Accreditation and Quality Assurance of the Swiss Universities (OAQ), the Council of Appeals of the Agency for Evaluation and Accreditation of Higher Education in Portugal (A3ES) and the Steering Committee of the European University Association Institutional Evaluation Programme (EUA-IEP).


Dr Walsh is also now Chief Executive of the National Qualifications Authority of Ireland (NQAI), the Higher Education and Training Awards Council (HETAC) and the Irish Universities Quality Board (IUQB). Padraig will lead the agencies through amalgamation towards the establishment of the Qualifications and Quality Assurance, Ireland (QQAI).


As Chief Executive Designate of QQAI, Padraig is committed to building an organisation that will serve learners and the public, building on the achievements of the last decade and promoting the National Framework of Qualifications as a structure of transparent, accessible, quality-assured qualifications encompassing general, further, higher and professional education.

Update on migration of awards to Common Awards system
June 2011 Update on Awards Plan

FETAC Business System (FBS)

WCES is being replaced with FETAC Business System (FBS). Since May 2010, FBS has been used by new applicant providers, for Awards and Standards development and the public website. Since January 2011, some 250 centres have been using FBS for certification. Some 800 remaining centres will be moved to FBS from Thursday, 9 June 2011.

The schedule of activities is as follows:

  • FETAC’s Web Candidate Entry System (WCES or www.fetac.net) will close on Tuesday, 7 June 2011.
  • If you have not used FBS previously, your user name and password will be emailed to your centre/provider co-ordinator on 8 June 2011. You can continue to use your current VASCO details.

You will find details about how to log in to FBS at:
http://www.fetac.ie/fetac/providers/tools/FBSRollout.htm

 

  • Because of the migration of large numbers of users from WCES to FBS, you will not be able to access FBS on Wednesday, 8 June 2011.
  • Statements of Results will be available in FBS from 21 June, 2011.

April 2011 Update

Update on migration of awards to Common Awards system
April 2011 Update on Awards Plan

Managing the transition to the Common Awards System (CAS)

An information note (April 2011) has been developed to assist existing providers to manage the change to the Common Awards System. It contains key messages and a mapping of existing awards to the new common awards to facilitate understanding and to support providers when developing programmes. Further versions of this note will be published at the end of May as information is updated.

Water Meter Installation
We wish to advise that, at present, there is no FETAC certification linked to water meter installation. There is a formal process for developing awards which would require a sector needs analysis and the involvement of key partners. Until such time as the Government confirms its plans for domestic water metering no award development will take place.

Shared Programmes

Programmes have been approved for sharing with a range of provider types. A shared programme is a programme that is developed by a consortium for sharing by a number of providers. View list of programmes approved for sharing. Providers who wish to offer these programmes should email validation@fetac.ie identifying the name of the programme they wish to offer. On receipt of the email, FETAC will supply the provider with the approved programme descriptor and an application form for validation.

Level 4, 5 and 6 Presentation

FETAC briefings for providers on the new Common Award System, Validation Requirements and Transition Arrangements have concluded. View briefing presentation.

FETAC Quality Framework for Providers

FETAC Quality Framework for Providers outlines proposals to enhance quality across further education and training.

March 2011 Update

New Common Awards at level 4, 5 and 6

FETAC is pleased to announce new common awards at level 4, 5 and 6 across a wide range of fields of learning, including Art, Craft and Design and Early Childhood Care and Education. For more information view Awards Info.

Sector (Qualifications) Needs Analysis Report on the Green Economy

The green/environmental sector has been identified as an area of business and employment growth potential in Ireland and internationally. FETAC has recently conducted research on the qualification needs and award requirements at NFQ Levels 1 – 6 in this sector. The Sector Needs Analysis Report is complete and is now published for consultation.

FETAC publishes Annual Report Highlights 2010 - view publications

February 2011 Update

Update on migration of awards to Common Awards system
February 2011 Update on Awards Plan

January 2011 Update

Progression from FETAC Level 5 Certificates and Level 6 Advanced Certificates to Higher Education Courses 2011
FETAC's information leaflet on links to higher education courses for 2011 has been published. Copies of the publication will be sent to FETAC PLC/ Further Education centres and Guidance Counsellors shortly. Download Progression from FETAC Level 5 Certificates and Level 6 Advanced Certificates to Higher Education Courses.

Certification fees for 2011

FETAC has reviewed its fee structure in order to make the charges more transparent to providers and their learners.

FETAC will now charge for the certificate issued for each eligible learner. This is the only charge FETAC will make to learners. Details of fees for 2011.

2010

December 2010 Update

Christmas Greetings from FETAC

The Council and staff thank all our partners, learners and award holders for their support and commitment to high quality achievement in further education and training throughout 2010.

 

FETAC wishes you success and happiness for Christmas and for 2011.  View our card, produced by Ina Harte Level 2 award holder from Cope Foundation Clonakilty.

November 2010 Update

Update on Provider Registration
FETAC has closed its application processing for 2010 to facilitate the processing of existing applications and is currently reviewing its registration process for agreement of provider's quality assurance.

FETAC will re-commence processing in 2011 with:

  • mandatory briefings for new applicant providers – applications will not be accepted unless a briefing has been

          attended. The next briefing will be in February 2011

  • new criteria for registration will be introduced
  • screening of applications will be undertaken by a new FETAC Application Approval Committee on a quarterly basis

The next date for screening of new applications is 1 February 2011.

One million people - one million reasons to celebrate!

One million people in Ireland have achieved FETAC awards between 2001-2010. To mark this important milestone, President Mary McAleese presented awards to a representative group of learners in the Pillar Room, Rotunda Hospital, Dublin on Monday 8 November 2010.

Press Room   

Photos

YouTube video link  Alternate video link
As part of our one million reasons to celebrate we also sponsored a competition on Today FM Radio with Ian Dempsey. Congratulations to the five lucky people who won a career coaching session, giving practical advice on how to make the best use of their talents to achieve their goals. In addition, each winner received an i-pad. FETAC awards take you further!

October 2010 Update

New level 3 common awards published

FETAC has published 7 new level 3 common awards. Programmes leading to these awards must be validated prior to delivery. For details of the Level 3 Certificate in General Learning 3M0874, Level 3 Certificate in Information and Communication Technologies 3M0877, Level 3 Certificate in Science and Engineering Skills 3M0829, Level 3 Certificate in Employability Skills 3M0935, Level 3 Specific Purpose Certificate Bar Skills 3SO685, Level 3 Specific Purpose Certificate Culinary Skills 3SO924 and the Level 3 Specific Purpose Certificate in Restaurant Skills 3SO686 view FETAC's Awards Directory.  In addition, the leaflets All you need to know about Level 3 and The Common Awards System - Making the moves...as easy as A,P,C provide detailed information relating to level 3 awards and The Common Awards System (CAS). Copies of both these information leaflets will be posted to centres.

September 2010 Update

FETAC Key Dates and Information 2011
FETAC’s Key Dates and Information 2011 leaflet containing important dates and information for providers offering programmes leading to FETAC awards for the four certification periods for 2011 has been published. Certification periods now reflect the closing date of each certification period, i.e. for February, June, October and December. The Key Dates leaflet is now available to download and copies will be posted to centres shortly.

August 2010 Update

FETAC publishes Annual Monitoring Report 2009
FETAC's Annual Monitoring Report 2009 documents the monitoring of providers as undertaken by FETAC and provides details of monitoring findings arising from the implementation of monitoring of registered providers by FETAC during 2009.

Awards for consultation

A number of Level 4, 5 and 6 awards are or will be published for consultation under Developing New Awards. Interested parties are encouraged to provide feedback online.

We welcome any comments or feedback at Contact Us.

July 2010 Update

FBS

FETAC has made significant progress in the design and provision of an innovative, integrated IT system known as the FETAC Business System (FBS). The FBS facilitates a number of core processes including the certification of learners. When fully operational, it meets the shared requirements of the range of FETAC policies and the further education and training sector. A number of FETAC processes which were carried out manually are now automated ensuring greater coherence, consistency and efficiency in the quality of our service. 

The IT processes supporting  the determination of quality assured assessment results and FETAC certification are being introduced in a phased way, working towards complete implementation with all further education and training providers by the end of 2011. Providers from a range of sectors have committed to being part of the first phase of rollout, commencing January 2011.

The FBS was enthusiastically received when Providers saw how it facilitates more efficient and less time-bound information uploads; the range of reports that Providers can generate arising from data was also warmly welcomed.  Comments of those who have agreed to participate so far included:

Brilliant - how soon can we have it?’

‘To have your own workspace to enter and save results is fantastic.  It takes all the pressure off.’

The FBS will be introduced for all providers in a phased way over 2011. FETAC is committed to working with the Further Education and Training sector to improve the quality of service to learners and to use technology to optimise efficient use of resources for everyone.

If you would like to be part of the early phases of FBS rollout please let us know using the Contact Us facility on this website.

Validation Briefing

Please note:

Registered Providers wishing to offer any of the New Common Awards Level 5 and 6 must attend a Validation Briefing prior to application.  The next briefing will take place:


Venue:               Glen Royal Hotel, Maynooth

Date:                  Wednesday,  8 September 2010

Time:                 10:30hrs  – 13:00hrs

Bookings:

To book please email validation@fetac.ie.  A fee of  €100 per attendee is payable prior to attendance. Confirmation of booking will be issued on receipt of payment.  Cheques should be made payable to FETAC. We are sorry we are unable to process credit/debit cards.

Awards analysis - June 2010 update

FETAC is continually engaged in efforts to upgrade and improve the annual awards dataset. The latest awards analysis was completed in June 2010, and supplements the data for 2009 set out in the tables below.  It provides headline data and trend data and reveals further detail according to Award Type and Level, Fields of Learning, Region and Age.

Update of Progression from FETAC Advanced Certificate - Craft to Higher Education Courses

The FETAC publication Progression from FETAC Advanced Certificate-Craft to Higher Education Courses, which outlines progression routes available to holders of the FETAC Advanced Certificate - Craft to a variety of 3rd level courses, has been recently updated to include information on further progression opportunities for award holders and apprentices who have been made redundant after Phase 4 of the Apprenticeship programme.  Detailed information on entry requirements on these progression routes are available from individual higher education institutions.

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June 2010 Update

Update on migration of awards to Common Awards system
June 2010 Update on Awards Plan

Provider registration application

Following the suspension of provider registration applications for a short period to facilitate the roll out of our new website, FETAC would like to advise providers that applications can now be made on-line for provider registration. Please go to the providers page for information on how to apply.

Self-Evaluation reminder

All those providers whose quality assurance has been agreed for more than a year are due to complete a self-evaluation of at least one of their programmes. For details and templates see Section B9 of the QA Guidelines and Self-Evaluation of Programmes and Services. Completed reports can be emailed to qa@fetac.ie

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May 2010 Update

New FETAC Website

The new FETAC website offers a fresh look and feel and still features the same information as before but is more focused on the needs of visitors to the website.

Enhancements to the website include improved navigation and accessibility.

Please use the search function, or view the sitemap for a layout of this website, to assist in finding the information you require.

Certification information is located under Providers / Tools and Guidelines / Certification and is accessible in Certification Resources under Quick Links.

The Awards Directory is located under Awards Info / Awards Directory and replaces the former Guide to Awards. The search function at the top right hand side of each page can also be used to look for particular Major Awards and Component Awards (formerly module descriptors) by title or code.

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April 2010 Update

Update on migration of awards to Common Awards system
April 2010 Update on Awards Plan

Briefing for registered providers on Programme Validation Levels 5 and 6
All registered providers wishing to offer new awards at levels 5 and 6 must first have their programmes validated by FETAC. Prior to submitting programmes for evaluation, registered providers must attend a briefing session on programme validation.

FETAC will host a Programme Validation Levels 5 and 6 Briefing Session on Tuesday, 11 May 2010, (10.30am to 1pm) at Tullamore Court Hotel, Tullamore, Co. Offaly.

If you would like to attend, RSVP: validation@fetac.ie. Registered providers should note that a fee of €100 per person, payable to FETAC in advance of the briefing date, is charged for attendance.

Highlights Report
FETAC has published its Highlights Report for 2009. See FETAC Annual Reports under Publications.

New awards in Lifeguarding for consultation
New standards in lifeguarding have been developed through the Common Awards System. One (1) new special purpose award at level 5 and three (3) new special purpose awards at level 6 are proposed. These awards were developed by the Lifeguarding Standards Development Group led by Irish Water Safety. FETAC is now inviting interested parties to comment on the draft standards.

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March 2010 Update

Manual Handling Instruction award published
The new Level 6 Special Purpose Certificate in Manual Handling Instruction and Level 6 Special Purpose Certificate in People Handling Instruction have been published. See more on these awards.

Award Statistics
Over 900,000awards were made by the Council since FETAC’s establishment in June 2001 to the end of 2009.The details of the latest awards, made in 2009, and all earlier awards are presented in the following link. Award Statistics.

Important Notice for Applicant Providers
FETAC would like to advise providers who are applying for provider registration that no new applications will be taken from the close of business on 31 March 2010. This is to facilitate the introduction and changeover to a new business and IT system within FETAC.

Any new applications received after this time will be returned to providers. Providers will be able to submit their applications from 1 June 2010 when the new system is in place. Providers are advised to check this website for updates during April and May relating to Provider Registration applications.

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February 2010 Update

Horticulture Awards Development
In March 2009 a Standards Development Group for Horticulture was established by and lead by Teagasc. Based on existing awards and the needs of learners and industry, a new major award in Horticulture at level 4 has been devised. The group is now working on developing new awards at levels 5 and 6. FETAC are now inviting interested parties to comment on the standards for Horticulture Level 4, using the Consultation Feedback Forms.Use the individual Feedback Form for each specification to provide feedback on the award. Please send the completed feedback form/s to standards@fetac.ie no later than Friday 26 March 2010.

Update on migration of awards to Common Awards system
February 2010 Update on Awards Plan

Reminder - Protection for Learners Arrangements
FETAC wish to remind registered providers, if they are delivering programmes of 3 months duration or more on a commercial and profit making basis, it is the Providers’ obligation under Section 47 of the Qualifications (Education and Training Act 1999, that a policy and procedures for the Protection of Learners (PfL) are put in place to protect learners should the programme cease unexpectedly. The provider must complete this PfL prior to commencing Programme delivery. Details on PFL requirements are available here.

FETAC Awards in Manual Handling Instruction and People Handling Instruction. Training Standards to be published in 2010
The award specifications for two new FETAC Level 6 Special Purpose awards in Manual Handling Instruction and People Handling instruction have been approved and will be published on 31 March.

These awards are at level 6 on the national framework of qualifications, are nationally and internationally recognised and endorsed by the Health and Safety Authority in accordance with its guidance on the New Manual Handling Training System.

These awards have been devised to ensure 'instructors' of manual handling and people handling operate to a nationally recognised standard.

Programme Validation

Registered providers who wish to offer these awards will be required to submit their programmes to FETAC for validation prior to offering these awards to learners. FETAC and a number of professional bodies are exploring the option of a Shared Programme to facilitate a consortium of providers to share a common programme which would be made available by the members of the consortium.

The process of validation involves the provider developing their own programme in accordance with a standard template provided by FETAC and submitting it for evaluation. The validation process is approximately 12 weeks from receipt of a valid application for validation.

Once successfully evaluated by FETAC the provider will be granted approval to offer the programme.

Recognition of Prior Learning
Existing instructors with experience and other awards in this field will be facilitated to have their prior learning recognised and assessed to enable them to achieve the awards. This recognition of prior learning process will allow those who are currently instructors obtain FETAC Level 6 awards in manual handling instruction and people handling instruction.

The details on the recognition of prior learning process will be finalised in March. In general it will require existing instructors to submit a portfolio of evidence which can be assessed in a short period against the standards in the awards. The assessment process will include practical skills demonstration(s) and a theory test to demonstrate competence.

RPL can only be offered by registered FETAC providers approved to offer RPL for these awards. When the details of the scheme for RPL are worked out, they will be published on the FETAC website. A briefing for providers interested in offering RPL will be scheduled and a list of FETAC approved RPL providers will made available on the FETAC website.

Becoming a registered FETAC training provider
Only those training providers organisation who wish to offer the Level 6 Manual Handling Instruction and People Handling Instruction awards should register as a provider with FETAC. The registration process involves agreement of their quality assurance policies and procedures with FETAC.

Training provider organisations who wish to register with FETAC should first attend a FETAC Briefing. See www.fetac.ie for details of the next QA new Provider Briefing.

Current instructors who wish to achieve the level 6 award(s) as an instructor should do so via a FETAC registered provider. Instructors offering manual handling and people handling courses e.g. to operatives do not have to register as a FETAC Provider.

Briefing for registered providers on Programme Validation Levels 5 and 6
Registered providers wishing to offer new awards at levels 5 and 6 must first have their programmes validated by FETAC. Prior to offering these awards, registered providers must attend a briefing session on programme validation before submitting their programmes.

FETAC will host a Programme Validation Levels 5 and 6 Briefing Session on Wednesday, 3 March 2010, (10am to 1pm) at Glenroyal Hotel, Maynooth, Co. Kildare.

If you would like to attend, RSVP: validation@fetac.ie. Registered providers should note that an attendance fee of 100 per person, payable to FETAC in advance of the briefing date, is charged for attendance.

FETAC Key Dates and Information June - December 2010
Copies of FETACs Key Dates and Information June to December 2010 leaflet, containing important dates and information for providers offering programmes leading to FETAC awards using NCVA processes and procedures, for the certification periods June to December 2010, will be mailed to each centre shortly. See Key Dates.

AONTAS Adult Learners' Festival
FETAC is delighted to support the AONTAS fourth annual nationwide Adult Learners' Festival taking place from February 22 to February 26, 2010.

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January 2010 Update

FETAC Level 5 Certificate in Early Childhood Care and Education
In September 2009 a Standards Group for the migration of existing awards at NFQ levels 4, 5 and 6 in Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) was established. The ECCE Standards Group has reviewed the existing FETAC awards at NFQ Level 5 and is proposing a single FETAC Level 5 Certificate in Early Childhood Care and Education. FETAC are now inviting submissions on the Certificate Specifications, there are specific questions for the certificate and component specifications. Submissions can be made on the submission forms. Submissions are requested by 12 February 2010.

FETAC's response to Framework Implementation and Impact Study
In response to The National Qualifications Authority of Ireland's recently published Framework Implementation and Impact Study Report, FETAC has published its Implementation and Impact of the Framework in the Further Education and Training Sector paper. This paper outlines the extent of change that has taken place in the further education and training sector between 2003-2009 following the launch of the National Framework of Qualifications in 2003 and the subsequent development, publication and implementation of FETAC policies in a range of areas.

Progression from FETAC Level 5 Certificates and Level 6 Advanced Certificates to Higher Education Courses 2010
A hard copy of this publication will be issued to FETAC PLC/ Further Education centres and Guidance Counsellors shortly. See link to 2010 information leaflet at Progression from FETAC Level 5 Certificates and Level 6 Advanced Certificates to Higher Education Courses.

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2009

December 2009 Update

Consultation paper on level 4 awards

This paper outlines the rationale for the migration of named awards at level 4. It is intended to discuss the contents with stakeholders during January 2010 and to finalise a plan for their migration and development by February.

Consultation paper on level 5 and level 6 information technology awards
This paper outlines the rationale for the migration of named awards at levels 5 and 6 in information technology. It is intended to discuss the contents with stakeholders during January 2010 and to finalise a plan for their migration and development by the end of January.

December Update on migration of awards to Common Awards system
The December 2009 update indicates activity with key partners in relation to migrating all existing awards to the Common Awards System. Link to Awards Plan Update December 2009.

New National awards in Micro-generation for consultation
New standards for Micro-generation have been developed through the Common Awards System. Three (3) new special purpose awards at level 6 are proposed. These awards were developed by the Micro-generation Standards Development Group, which was established in February 2009. FETAC is now inviting interested parties to comment on the draft standards.

New providers receive their QA parchments
60 new providers received their parchments on the 4th December 2009 having agreed their quality assurance policies and procedures with FETAC during the year. Parchments were presented by Mr Sean Haughey, T.D. Minister for Lifelong Learning. These providers, representing a wide range of public and private education and training providers in all sectoral areas from forestry to health and safety, bring the number of providers registered with FETAC to 850.

FETAC awarded Secretariat contract for ENQA-VET
FETAC has been successful in its bid to provide the Secretariat for the next stage of the work of ENQA-VET, following the call for tender published by the European Commission earlier this year. The new Secretariat will support the Commission in implementing the European Quality Assurance Reference Framework which was adopted by the European Council and Parliament in July. The new work will involve close collaboration with partners in the EU Member States as well as the candidate countries and social partners at European level.

The awarding of this contract is testament to the success of the current ENQA-VET Secretariat and its experience in managing a complex process of European cooperation, involving work in thematic groups, peer learning activities, commissioning of studies, as well as board meetings, general assemblies of the network and conferences. This work has resulted in the production of a set of concrete results which will be useful for countries as they reflect on how to implement the EQARF in their national contexts.

Full details of the range of work undertaken in ENQA-VET can be found on www.enqavet.eu.

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November 2009 Update

Proposed Level 4 Specific Purpose Certificate in Digital Tachograph Operations

New standards for Digital Tachograph Operations have been developed through the Common Awards System. One new special purpose award at level 4 is proposed. FETAC is now inviting interested parties to comment on the draft standards.

Self-Evaluation Reminder
All those providers whose quality assurance has been agreed for more than a year are due to complete a self-evaluation of at least one of their programmes. For details and templates see Section B9 of the QA Guidelines and Self-Evaluation of Programmes and Services. Completed reports can be emailed to self-evaluation@fetac.ie

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October 2009 Update

Consultation paper on level 5 and level 6 business awards

This paper outlines the rationale for the migration of named awards in the business area at levels 5 and 6. It is intended to discuss the contents with stakeholders during October and to finalise a plan for their migration and development by November 2009.

We welcome input from stakeholders by 30 October. Please complete the feedback form and email it to standards@fetac.ie or fax to 01 8650067.

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September 2009 Update 

FETAC's New Assessment Policy

The introduction of FETAC's new assessment policy which includes processes for Internal Verification, External Authentication, Results Approval and Appeals commenced in July 2008. Since that date more than 570 registered centres have successfully implemented the policy. The centres that have implemented the new processes are from the full range of FETAC registered centres. FETAC is monitoring the effectiveness of providers' quality assurance with particular reference to the implementation of fair and consistent assessment.

Key Dates and Information 2010

Copies of FETACs Key Dates and Information 2010 leaflet, containing important dates and information for providers offering programmes leading to FETAC awards using NCVA processes and procedures, will be mailed to each centre shortly.

FETAC logo and guidelines for usage
The FETAC logo has been updated to meet the requirements of The Official Languages Act 2003. Updated guidelines for usage of the logo, along with variations of the logo in both landscape and portrait, are now available. See Logos.

FETAC certificates issued

Following May 2009 assessment, over 83,000 FETAC certificates issued to over 900 centres during the month of August. This represents the largest single issue of certificates by FETAC.

Certification fees

Certification fees for centres offering FETAC (NCVA) awards have been increased. Notification of revised rates issued to centres in July 2009. The revised rates will apply to learners who are submitted for certification for the November 2009 certification and beyond.

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August 2009

First Review of FETAC Strategic Plan 2008 - 10 and Outline Plan for 2009 - 2011

This document represents a First Review of the Strategic Plan 2008 - 2010 and an Outline Plan for 2009 - 2011. The review reports on FETACs progress against its seven strategic goals and related strategic objectives and actions, since January 2008. It provides a judgement of FETACs progress against published performance indicators and assesses progress towards the 66 milestones originally identified.

The Outline Plan for 2009 - 2011 is represented by a list of milestones which have been identified following assessment of progress to date. These milestones have taken into account two major changes in the external environment which have taken place since the publication of the Strategic Plan, namely the proposed amalgamation of FETAC with HETAC and the NQAI and resource constrains as announced in the Budget of 2008. New and Revised Milestones July 2009 - December 2011

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July 2009 Update 

New Common Awards

A range of new awards in Level 5 Fgas Handling are now available through the Common Awards System.

New FETAC Awards in Manual Handling Instruction and People Handling Instruction for consultation

New standards for Manual Handling Instruction and People Handling Instruction have been developed through the Common Awards System. 2 new special purpose awards at level 6 are proposed. These awards were developed by the Manual Handling Standards Development Group. FETAC is now inviting interested parties to comment on the draft standards

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June 2009 Update 

FETAC publishes further analysis of 2008 data
FETAC is committed to providing timely and comprehensive data to satisfy national and international data needs. The latest awards data for 2008 were published earlier this year. See 2008 Statistics.

The awards data for 2007 involved a comprehensive re-classification of certain awards and provides a baseline moving forward. To this end, for the first time comprehensive comparisons are also available, using 2007 as a baseline. The 2008 headline data and trend data are presented in the publication on further analysis of 2008 Awards data.

FETAC publishes First Annual Monitoring Report
The first FETAC Annual Monitoring Report documents the monitoring of providers as undertaken by FETAC during 2008. The report provides details of monitoring findings and arising issues and sets out plans for 2009. See Publications.

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May 2009 Update

Programme Approval Agreements

The Programme Approval Agreements were approved for Fáilte Ireland and Teagasc. Work on other Agreements is progressing with the Institutes of Technology and the VECs. A series of meetings is continuing, including first VEC cluster meeting.

Road Safety Authority Mandatory Programme

The Mandatory programme from the Road Safety Authority leading to 5 Special Purpose Awards at level 5 has been validated.

FÁS Programmes Validated

The first group of FÁS programmes has been validated, leading to 14 Special Purpose Awards at level 6. These were validated under the Programme Approval Agreement which FETAC holds with FÁS.

New level 5 awards for redundant Apprentices

By April 2009 it was estimated that potentially 800 apprentices were made redundant having completed Phase 4 of the 7 phase programme. FETAC, in response to the need to give recognition for learning already completed by apprentices, is pleased to provide 2 level 5 awards which may be achieved through a specially designed programme known as PP5. This programme will be available from September 2009, with 700 places nationally through 12 Institutes of Technology. 

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April 2009 Update 

New Common Awards

A range of new awards in Level 5 quarrying and Level 6 driver instruction are now available through the Common Awards System.

New National awards in Fgas Handling for consultation

New standards for handling of Fgases in the fire, motor vehicle and refrigeration sectors have been developed through the Common Awards System. 3 new special purpose awards at level 5 are proposed. These awards were developed by the Fgas Standards Development Group which was established in September 2008. FETAC is now inviting interested parties to comment on the draft standards.

Cork Lifelong Learning Festival

The 6th Cork Lifelong Learning Festival, running throughout Cork city from March 30 to April 5 2009, celebrates the huge range of adult education and training opportunities that exist in Cork. FETAC is delighted to be a main sponsor of this event which has grown from strength to strength with over 200 free events taking place across the city in a variety of venues including shopping centres, libraries, colleges, community and resource centres, schools, sports grounds, parks and museums. For details see festival programme. View photographs

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March 2009 Update 

The National Qualifications Authority of Ireland EQF e-bulletin

The National Qualifications Authority of Ireland has issued the first of a short series of information bulletins about the European Qualifications Framework (EQF). EQF is an overarching qualifications framework or common European reference framework which links countries qualifications together, acting as a translation device to make qualifications more readable and understandable across different countries and systems in Europe. The principal aims of EQF are to promote citizens mobility between countries and to facilitate their lifelong learning. For further information see http://www.nqai.ie/interdev_eqf.html.

Information for Learners: Guidelines for Providers

As part of its continuing actions relating to access, transfer and progression, FETAC has published Information for Learners: Guidelines for Providers. See Publications.

Award Statistics

Over 750,000 awards were made by the Council since FETACs establishment in June 2001 to the end of 2008. The details of the latest awards, made in 2008, and all earlier awards are presented in the following link. Award Statistics.

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February 2009 Update 

Certificates issued for January 2009 certification period

129 centres availed of the January 2009 certification period and 10,500 FETAC (NCVA) certificates issued to learners on 11 February.

FETAC Annual Report 2008: Highlights

FETAC Council approves Annual Report 2008: Highlights. See Publications.

Guidelines for External Authenticators

The Guidelines for External Authenticators are now available. See Authenticators.

Progression from FETAC Level 5 Certificates and Level 6 Advanced Certificates to Higher Education Courses 2009

A hard copy of this publication will be issued to FETAC PLC/ Further Education centres and Guidance Counsellors shortly. Click here to download a pdf version of the 2009 publication.

Annual Report

FETAC has published its Annual Report for 2007. See Publications

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January 2009 Update 

AONTAS Adult Learners' Festival

FETAC is delighted to support the third annual nationwide Adult Learners' Festival. The festival, which runs from February 2 to February 6, 2009, celebrates adult learning, and showcases the work of adult education providers. For details see the festival website. View photographs.

FETAC Learner Charter

FETAC has published its Learner Charter as part of continued actions in regard to access, transfer and progression. The Charter summarises FETACs promise to learners in relation to awards, (including equality, progression, recognition, assessment and certification) and the effectiveness of programmes courses and services. The Charter may assist providers also in addressing key areas of responsibilities in meeting learners' needs, including providing the required range of information to learners.

Self-Evaluation Reminder

All those providers whose quality assurance has been agreed for more than a year are due to complete a self-evaluation of at least one of their programmes. For details and templates see Section B9 of the QA Guidelines and Self-Evaluation of Programmes and Services. Completed reports can be emailed to self-evaluation@fetac.ie.

Making the Moves towards Certification

Information leaflet for new quality assured providers on the process and procedures leading to FETAC certification.

Minor Awards developed by Providers

Over the years many providers submitted minor awards (modules) for approval and subsequently used them for certification in their own centres. Many of these awards have been reviewed by FETAC and are now made available to all registered providers. Click on Minor Awards developed by Providers to view these awards.

Guidelines for External Authenticators

The guidelines will be available on this website by mid February. 

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2008

December 2008 Update 

Results FETAC (NCVA) and Certificates

The results submitted by 331 FETAC registered providers for November certification have been processed. Certificates for 22,553 will be sent to centres in the first week of January 2009.

Levels 1 and 2 Awards

Congratulations to 28 learners who achieved Level 1 and Level 2 Certificates in General Learning this December. Some were completing additional components and others achieved certification for their first time. Learners were participating in programmes on offer in their own communities and in the workplace, This brings to 65 the total number of Levels 1 and 2 Major Certificates achieved in 2008. A further 96 component certificates have been achieved.

FETACs Christmas card this year is designed by Ms Ina Harte from the Cope Centre in Clonakilty. Ina is engaged in a validated programme which leads to awards at levels 1 and 2.

A total of 30 programmes have now been validated by the Council leading to Levels 1 and 2 Awards. Some 29 other programme applications are at different stages of the validation process. This reflects not only a significant achievement from the various providers who have proposed programmes for validation, but also growth across 18 counties of Ireland in opportunities for learners at these critical levels of the National Framework of Qualifications. It is a significant response from the further education and training sector to the challenges set out in the National Skills Strategy. From FETACs perspective it also reflects the complete implementation of all new policies and procedures in partnership with learners and providers. It brings to life fully the National Framework of Qualifications in that now every single level is populated by people achieving recognition for successful learning in a wide range of contexts. 

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November 2008 Update 

New National awards in Quarrying for consultation

New standards for quarrying have been developed through the Common Awards System. There are 14 new special purpose quarrying awards at level 5. These awards were developed by the Quarrying Standards Development Group which was established in September 2008. FETAC are now inviting interested parties to comment on the draft standards.

FETAC to amalgamate with other bodies

On the 14 October, it was announced in the Budget Speech that the government had decided to amalgamate the NQAI, FETAC and HETAC. The new organisation will also take responsibility for the external quality assurance review of the Universities, a function which is currently performed by the Irish Universities Quality Board and the Higher Education Authority. There will also be discussions with the National University of Ireland around the possibility of including some of the related functions of the NUI in the new organisation.

The Council, through a statement from the Chief Executive, Stan McHugh, welcomes the decision. We believe that it will bring greater coherence to the national approach to qualifications and quality, and that it will strengthen progression through the framework thereby underpinning the practice of lifelong learning and the National Skills Strategy. We also feel that it will enhance the inclusion of further education and training in the national education and training system and will give FETAC the opportunity to influence the wider education and training community."

Self-Evaluation Reminder

All those providers whose quality assurance has been agreed for more than a year are due to complete a self-evaluation of at least one of their programmes. For details and templates see Section B9 of the QA Guidelines and Self-Evaluation of Programmes and Services. Completed reports can be emailed to self-evaluation@fetac.ie.

FETAC registered providers approved to offer RPL for awards

FETAC has introduced a process to facilitate registered providers who wish to offer FETAC awards to learners on the basis of recognition of prior learning. Interested providers prepare and submit for approval their RPL policy and procedures as a sub strand of their quality assurance systems.

Following evaluation providers are approved by FETAC to offer specified named awards to learners through RPL.

To date six providers have had their RPL policies and procedures approved. These are:

  • Citizens Information Board, Dublin 4
  • Community Education and Training Centre, Wexford
  • Empower Learning Ltd., Co Kilkenny
  • Fáilte Ireland Training Centres
  • IBEC Retail Skillnet, Co Donegal
  • Teagasc

Levels 1 and 2 Awards

To date a total of 30 programmes have been validated by Council. Click here to view the programmes

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October 2008 Update 

Progression from FETAC Advanced Certificate - Craft to Higher Education Courses

A leaflet outlining current progression routes for holders of the FETAC Advanced Certificate - Craft award has been published by FETAC. Contained in this leaflet are details of progression routes to levels 6, 7 and 8 full-time and part-time courses offered by a number of higher education institutions. Click here to see Progression from FETAC Advanced Certificate - Craft to Higher Education Courses leaflet.

Key Dates and Information 2009 for providers offering programmes leading to FETAC awards using NCVA processes and procedures

Copies of FETACs Key Dates and Information 2009 leaflet, containing important dates and information for providers offering programmes leading to FETAC awards using NCVA processes and procedures, will be mailed to each centre shortly. Click here to view Key Dates and Information 2009 leaflet. This leaflet is a supplement to the FETAC (NCVA) Awards Guide published in 2005. The leaflet will be available on our website all year around.

NOTE: If you are a registered provider and have not previously submitted learners for certification, it is advisable that you make contact with the FETAC helpdesk for assistance with the necessary steps. The helpdesk can be contacted at 01 8659599 or at certification@fetac.ie.

Levels 1 and 2 Awards

A further programme at Level 2 has been validated by Council:

Provider: Co Monaghan VEC

Programme Title: Back to Basics

Leading to Awards: Level 2 Certificate in General Learning

Programme description: A part time programme run 2 days per week over a 12 month period. This programme has three compulsory programme modules and offers learners different pathways through the programme based on 9 additional programme modules. In total it includes 16 FETAC components.

Aimed at improving learners confidence in their own ability to learn, participate and interact, the programme focuses on basic literacy and numeracy skills. Learners can transfer between the various options offered within the programme and to other programmes offered at the same level offered by the Adult Literacy Service. On successful completion of the programme learners can progress to programmes leading to FETAC level 3 awards. 

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September 2008 Update 

Implementation and Impact of the National Framework of Qualifications

The National Qualifications Authority Ireland has commissioned a study on the implementation and impact of the National Framework of Qualifications and the associated policies for access, transfer and progression for learners. FETAC, in consultation with stakeholders, has prepared the report for the Further Education and Training (FET) sector. Please click here for the report and further information.

Certificates

Over 67,000 certificates have been issued for FETAC (NCVA) May and August certification.

Recognition of Prior Learning

A briefing session will be held by FETAC on 18 November 2008 to advise providers on the requirements in respect of offering RPL for the purposes of achieving an award. Providers can register on this website on the RPL Briefings page.

Self-Evaluation Reminder

All those providers whose quality assurance has been agreed for more than a year are due to complete a self-evaluation of at least one of their programmes. For details and templates see Section B9 of the QA Guidelines and Self-Evaluation of Programmes and Services. Completed reports can be emailed to self-evaluation@fetac.ie 

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August 2008 Update 

August Certification

32 centres participated in the August certification opportunity for FETAC registered centres offering FETAC Awards (former NCVA Awards). The assessment process operated under the new assessment guidelines.

Building Energy Rating Assessment

The revised standard for the Level 6 Component Certificate in Building Energy Rating Assessment is found in module code D30189 and replaces module code C30262. The standard incorporates SEIs requirements related to BER of newly constructed and existing dwellings. It also includes a change to the assessment requirements. Providers are advised to use the new standard once SEI has released the updated DEAP Software (see www.sei.ie).

A provider who has assessed learners according to the standard set out in module code C30262 has until the November 2008 certification period to authenticate candidate results. C30262 will be officially removed from the certification database after that time, therefore NO certification will be available against C30262 once the November certification period closes. Providers are advised to ensure that learners are made aware of these developments as well as SEIs own requirements for entry on to the SIE register of BER Assessors.

Certificate Supplements

A number of Certificate Supplements is now available. This list will be added to in the future. 

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July 2008 Update 

New Standards in Occupational First Aid

Level 5 Occupational First Aid. The new standards for this component certificate are found in module code D20188. Module providers must use Occupational First Aid Instructors registered with the Occupational First Aid Assessment Agent (www.ofaaa.ie) on behalf of the Health & Safety Authority (HSA). Providers are advised to use the new standards. However a provider that has learners assessed to the standards expressed in D20174 has until the November 2008 certification period to enter candidates. D20174 will be officially removed from the certification database after that time.

Level 6 Occupational First Aid Instruction. The standards for this component certificate are found in module code D30185. OFA instructors who are listed on the OFAAA register but who are not registered with FETAC can be recognised as second providers to the OFAAA and that organisation will enter candidates for certification with FETAC. Providers who have agreed their quality assurance with FETAC can enter candidates directly to FETAC through the web candidate entry system on condition that they use Occupational First Aid Instructors registered with the Occupational First Aid Assessment Agent (www.ofaaa.ie) on behalf of the Health and Safety Authority.

Statements of Results Issued to almost 70,000 Learners

In July, Statements of Results were issued to almost 70,000 learners by FETAC. More than half of the Major Awards achieved were granted in the Childcare/Healthcare/ Community Care area. Over 500 learners successfully completed the new FETAC Level 5 Major Award in Health Service Skills. Business Studies and Childcare maintained their popularity with approximately 2,000 learners successfully achieving FETAC Awards in these areas. Computer Literacy, with almost 7,000 successful learners, continues to be the most popular Level 3 Minor Award.

New Quality Assurance Procedures

From 1 July 2008 all registered providers are required to have quality assured procedures in place to plan, oversee, verify and authenticate the assessment process. For further information see Assessment on this website.

18 Limerick Learners Receive First Ever FETAC Level 1 & 2 Awards. See Press Release and photos.

Donegal Employees Receive First Ever FETAC Level 2 Awards. See Press Release.

12 Cork Learners Receive First Ever FETAC Level 1 & 2 Awards. See Press Release and photos.

Learners from Dun Laoghaire VEC Receive First Ever FETAC Level 1 & 2 Awards. See Press Release and photos.

Internal Verifier Guidelines

See Internal Verifier Guidelines under Assessment on this website. 

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June 2008 Update 

Levels 1 and 2 Awards

Two further programmes at Level 1 have been validated by Council:

Provider: South Tipperary VEC

Programme Title: Learning for Living

Leading to Awards: Level 1 Certificate in Communications

Level 1 Certificate in General Learning

Programme description: This part time programme is delivered within the adult education services, Youthreach and within St Josephs, Ferryhouse. It potentially enables achievement of 16 Component awards, based on full participation in five programme modules. It focuses on elementary communications, numeracy, learning to learn and Information technology skills. Duration varies according to context and learner need. Learners transfer and progress within the local VEC provision and within the service itself.

Provider: City of Dublin VEC

Programme Title: Communications for Daily Living

Leading to Awards: Level 1 Certificate in Communications

Programme description: This part time programme is delivered within the adult literacy services. It potentially enables achievement of 5 Component awards, based on full participation in 6 programme modules. It focuses on the development of skill in elementary communications and in learning to learn. Duration varies according to context and learner need. Learners transfer and progress within the local VEC provision. 

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May 2008 Update 

First ever learners achieve FETAC awards at Levels 1 and 2 of the Irish National Framework of Qualifications

See Press Release and photos.

Briefing for interested registered providers on RPL (Recognition of Prior Learning) for achieving awards

To book a place at the briefing see the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) section on the Briefings page

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April 2008 Update 

Consultation on Access, Transfer and Progression

Information for Learners: Guidelines for Providers facilitates provider compliance with the NQAI determinations on access, transfer and progression. This document sets out information that all providers are required to give learners in relation to programmes and awards. It also includes a Learner Charter.

The Guidelines and Charter are now published for consultation and comments are invited to information@fetac.ie before 9 May 2008.

Award Inclusion and Alignment Policy

FÁS receives FETAC Quality Assurance Agreement. See photographs.

Self-Evaluation Reminder

All those providers whose quality assurance has been agreed for more than a year are due to complete a self-evaluation of at least one of their programmes. For details and templates see Section B9 of the QA Guidelines and Self-Evaluation of Programmes and Services. Completed reports can be emailed to self-evaluation@fetac.ie 

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March 2008 Update 

Award Statistics for 2007

Recognition of Prior Learning Update for Registered Providers

Levels 1 and 2 Awards

A further programme at Level 1 has been validated by Council:

Provider: Co Roscommon VEC

Programme Title: Adult Education: the First Step

Leading to Awards: Level 1 Certificate in Communications

Programme description: This part-time programme leads to the Level 1 Certificate in Communications through the completion of 6 programme modules; it is a part time programme, potentially ranging over 1 year depending on learner need and progress. It builds elementary skills knowledge and competency across communications, numeracy, information and communications technologies, health and safety and the arts . Learners transfer and progress within the local VEC provision and within the service itself. 

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February 2008 Update 

New FETAC Awards: update

FETAC Highlights 2007

Response to External Quality Review of FETAC

In March 2007 the National Qualifications Authority of Ireland (NQAI) commissioned a quality review of FETAC, under the terms of the Qualifications (Education and Training Act) 1999.

The agreed approach to the review centred on self-evaluation by the Council and external evaluation by an external panel. In July 2007 following extensive internal and external consultation FETAC published its Self Evaluation Report.

Through a series of interviews conducted during October with a range of stakeholders the panel sought to validate, or other wise, the findings of FETACs own self-evaluation. The panel published its report in November 2007.

The document Quality Review of FETAC: Response to the External Panels Report outlines FETACs response to the conclusions and recommendations of the Panel Report. Download a copy of this report. It also addresses FETACs responsibility to develop a plan to implement the recommendations and highlights the relationship between the Self Evaluation Report, the External Panel Report and the FETAC Strategic Plan 2010.

Levels 1 and 2 Awards

Briefings for preparation for validation leading to awards at levels 1 and 2 are currently being offered to all providers by the Further Education Support Service. Demand is high and places are limited so additional seminars are now being offered. See www.sfe.ie. Where further support is required, the Support Service should be contacted by email.

A further two programmes have been validated by the Council:

Provider: Cope Foundation Cork

Programme Title: Learning for Living

Leading to awards:  Level 1 Certificate in Communications

                                Level 1 Certificate in General Learning

                                Level 2 Certificate in General Learning

Programme description: This programme assists learners to identify personal areas of interest and ability; It focuses on independent living, learning for leisure and engagement and participation in the broader community including the workplace. It is structured so that learners can progress from level 1 through to level 2 and on to level 3 as appropriate in a wide range of learning areas. Progression is to a programme leading current level 3 awards and to similar programmes offered by other service providers in the vicinity.

Provider: Co Dublin VEC

Programme Title: Communications for Living

Leading to awards: Level 2 Certificate in General Learning

Programme Description: This programme aims to extend learners basic skills in communications, decision making and problem solving. It allows for achievement of up to eight Component awards at Level 2. It is a curriculum framework that will be offered across the VECs adult education services, allowing for local innovation within a defined range of themes. Progression is to the range of programmes leading to awards at Level 3 offered within the VEC and other service providers in the region.

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January 2008 Update 

Notice for FETAC applicants to CAO 2008

This notice refers to PLC/ Further Education centres with learners applying in 2008 to the CAO for a place in a 3rd level institution via FETAC Level 5 Certificates and Level 6 Advanced Certificates. For more information click here.

Progression from FETAC Level 5 Certificates and Level 6 Advanced Certificates to Higher Education Courses 2008

A hard copy of this publication will be issued to FETAC PLC/ Further Education centres and Guidance Counsellors shortly. Click here to download a pdf version of the 2008 publication.

FETAC Quality Assurance in 2007

During 2007 a total of 446 providers completed the process of agreeing their quality assurance systems with FETAC. This brings the total number of registered providers to 608, comprising just over 1,300 separate centres.

New providers continue to apply - during 2007, 131 providers made application to register, and this trend is expected to continue throughout the year.

Self-Evaluation Reminder

All those providers whose quality assurance has been agreed for more than a year are due to complete a self-evaluation of at least one of their programmes. For details and templates see Section B9 of the QA Guidelines and Self-Evaluation of Programmes and Services. Completed reports can be emailed to self-evaluation@fetac.ie.

FETAC Annual Report 2006 now available

Please click here to download a pdf version of the 2006 report

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2007

December 2007 Update 

FETAC Common Awards System

From January 2008 all new FETAC awards will be developed through the Common Awards System. The Common Awards System is a new and common format for all FETAC awards. The format includes learning outcomes, assessment techniques, grading arrangements and a common approach to titles for new named awards.

All existing systems for developing awards (FÁS, Fáilte Ireland , Teagasc, NCVA) will cease in January 2008. The Common Awards System will benefit learners and providers of further education and training programmes by providing a single coherent approach to awards development across the sector.

New FETAC level 6 awards in Driving Instruction

Six awards in driving instruction were recently approved by the FETAC Council. These new awards listed below are the first national awards in driving instruction to be made available in Ireland.

  • Level 6 Specific Purpose in Articulated Vehicle Driving Instruction
  • Level 6 Specific Purpose in Car Driving Instruction
  • Level 6 Specific Purpose in Goods Vehicle Driving Instruction
  • Level 6 Specific Purpose in Motorcycle Driving Instruction
  • Level 6 Specific Purpose in Passenger Vehicle Driving Instruction

Click here for more details on driving instruction awards.

New FETAC awards at levels 1 and 2

7 new component awards have been published in Sciences and in Performing Arts. These include Music, Life Sciences Horticulture and Habitat. Click here for the full list of level 1 and 2 component awards.

Programme validation at levels 1 and 2

In order to run a programme leading to FETAC accreditation, providers must submit their programmes to FETAC for validation. The first programmes at levels 1 and 2 were validated by the Policies Committee in September and a further 6 have been validated in November and December.

The National Learning Network, the National Adult Literacy Agency, North Tipperary VEC, Dun Laoghaire VEC and Co Donegal VEC were all successful in their submissions for programme validation. We look forward to seeing their learners being issued with the first ever FETAC Level 1 and Level 2 Certificates in 2008. Click here for more details of these programmes.

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November 2007 Update 

Commemorative Presentation to Providers of Programmes at Levels 1 and 2

FETAC made a commemorative presentation on October 27 to the first three providers to offer programmes leading to awards at Levels 1 and 2 of the National Framework of Qualifications. Having submitted their programmes for validation in summer 2007, Co. Donegal VEC, St. Josephs Foundation and City of Limerick VEC are the first three providers to offer programmes leading to these national awards. For full story and photos click here.

1 in 3 learners on certain FETAC accredited programmes accumulate credits

FETAC is currently examining the extent to which learners are using previous awards or credits to count towards obtaining a major award. Statistics from the May assessment period (for the old NCVA process) would suggest that as many as one in three learners have been furthering their education over a number of years. Out of over 46,000 learners in this period, over 16,000 had used credit from a previous assessment period. The majority of these (over 14,000) used credit accumulated in the years 2005 and 2006. However a surprising number had used credit accumulated from as far back as 1994.

Although in the early stages, this study would suggest that the flexible, modular approach to learning is a key success factor in the FETAC qualifications system.

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October 2007 Update 

New National Awards in Driving Instruction for consultation

The first national standards developed through the Common Awards System are the Level 6 Special Purpose Awards in Driving Instruction. These awards were developed by the Driving Instruction Standards Development Group which was established in April 2007. FETAC are now inviting interested parties to comment on the draft standards.

First programmes validated leading to new awards at levels 1 and 2!

FETAC is delighted to announce the first programmes to be validated leading to new awards at levels 1 and 2. On 27 September, the Policies Committee approved the following programmes:

Provider: Co Donegal VEC

Programme Title: Communications for the workplace

Leading to awards: Level 2 Certificate in General Learning

Programme Description: This programme aims to develop a broad range of communications skills in the context of the workplace, covering areas such as organisational culture and structure, health and safety etc. Learners can transfer or progress in further education and training to other programmes offered by the VEC and related services.

Provider: City of Limerick VEC

Programme Title: Adult Basic Education Programme

Leading to awards: Level 2 Certificate in General Learning

Programme Description: This programme is designed to address needs in communication, numeracy, information technology and a number of other integrated, cross-cutting elements such as personal development, planning, learning etc. The programme will be delivered across the service in a wide variety of contexts. Progression in further education and training is to other programmes offered by the VEC and associated services.

Provider: St Joseph's Foundation

Programme Title: Communications and General Lifelong Learning

Leading to awards:  Level 1 Certificate in Communications

                                Level 1 Certificate in General Learning

                                Level 2 Certificate in General Learning

Programme Description: This programme addresses learning needs through a wide range of activities that promote active choice and decision making, engagement in learning, independent living and enhanced participation within the local community. Progression is within the services of St Joseph's Foundation, to the workforce and to other associated providers.

For further information about preparing programmes for validation at levels 1 and 2, see Levels 1 and 2 Awards.

Progression from FETAC awards to third level education via CAO

Since its inception almost a decade ago, the Higher Education Links Scheme continues to expand and broaden its progression routes for FETAC award holders to third level education courses at a range of higher education institutions.

In 2007, 6,999 FETAC applicants applied through the CAO for a variety of third level courses. This number represents an increase of 1,420 on 2006 applicants. For details of specific progression routes see Progression from FETAC Level 5 Certificates and Level 6 Advanced Certificates to Higher Education Courses.

Awards

See presentation containing latest statistics on awards made in 2006 - award holder demographics, breakdown of awards by type, level and field of learning. 

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September 2007 Update 

Key Dates and Information 07/08 for providers offering programmes leading to FETAC awards using NCVA processes and procedures

A quantity of FETACs Key Dates and Information 07/08 leaflet, containing important dates and information for providers offering programmes leading to FETAC awards using NCVA processes and procedures, will be mailed to each centre during the first week in September. This leaflet is a supplement to the FETAC (NCVA) Awards Guide published in 2005. The leaflet will be available on our website all year around. NOTE: If you are a registered provider and have not previously submitted learners for certification, it is advisable that you make contact with the FETAC helpdesk for assistance with the necessary steps. The helpdesk can be contacted at 01 8659599 or at certification@fetac.ie.

Customer Satisfaction Survey and Review of FETAC by Providers

Thanks to all providers who completed the online Customer Satisfaction survey in May 2007. Click here to see a summary of the results of the survey. The survey was designed to measure satisfaction levels amongst providers with FETACs service, and identify areas in which FETAC can make improvements. As part of FETACs self-evaluation, the survey also asked providers to indicate how well FETAC performed its functions, objectives, etc. and about future roles for FETAC.

We are currently drawing up an action plan to address areas highlighted for improvement in the survey.

Registration of programmes leading to FETAC awards to be completed by all FETAC registered providers

All FETAC registered providers must complete the website based registration of their programmes before the end of September 2007. A letter detailing the new requirement and containing the special website address, with individual centre access codes and passwords was posted out to all centres at the end of August. A manual explaining how to enter the details of programmes was enclosed with the letter. We urge all centres to adhere to the deadline of the end of September and please contact us if you have any trouble operating the site by phoning the FETAC Helpdesk on 01-8659599 or emailing information@fetac.ie, putting "programme registration" in the subject line. 

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August 2007 Update 

Strategic Review: FETAC's Self-Evaluation Report

FETAC's self-evaluation is the first step in the strategic review of FETAC. The Self-Evaluation Report was compiled after FETAC consulted widely with providers, stakeholders, learners and the general public. Thanks to everyone who contributed to this consultation. Click here for an electronic version of FETAC's Self-Evaluation Report.

FETAC (NCVA) May Assessment Results

62,745 Statements of Results for May Assessment were sent out on 24 July to 805 centres who completed the May Assessment. This results data was sent to the CAO on 25 July.

Standards Development Groups

FETAC is on target to have 10 Standards Development Groups set up by the end of the year. See further information in Policy for Determining Standards and Common Awards System.

Standards Development - new modules available to centres

Over the next few years all FETAC awards will be reviewed and revised into a new Common Awards System. This will remove some of the duplication that currently exists across the awards of the former awarding bodies and will ensure a coherent suite of relevant and robust awards, accessible by quality assured providers. In preparation for this, FETAC is now reviewing all locally developed modules. These modules were classified as minor awards in 2005 but have not yet been included in the directory. As part of the review process the number of modules will be rationalised, as there is some significant duplication. Modules that are out of date and have not been assessed since May 2005 have been withdrawn. A review of particular areas has resulted in revisions in security related modules (contact FETAC regarding use of security modules) and the availability of Special Needs Assisting D20186, Understanding Special Needs D20187, and Train the Trainer E30179 modules to all registered providers. 

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July 2007 Update 

Awards

See latest statistics on awards made in 2006 - breakdown of awards by type and level, and award holder demographics.

Standards

Standards Advisory Board met for the second time on 5 June. The first Standards Development Group was set up in conjunction with the Road Safety Authority to devise standards for driving instruction. A technical briefing session for potential participants in Standard Development Groups took place on Monday 25 June. Organisations that attended: Bord Iascaigh Mhara, Fáilte Ireland, Irish Vocational Educational Association, Teagasc, Commission for Taxi Regulation, Financial Regulator, Health & Safety Authority, National Standards Authority of Ireland, Sustainable Energy Ireland. See also Policy for Determining Standards.

Quality Assurance

A total of 712 providers have now applied to FETAC for QA agreement 65 of these will have reached agreement with FETAC in July. See Registered Providers list.

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