Qualification achievement rates and minimum standards

Key information and guidance about qualification achievement rates (QAR) and minimum standards.

Qualification achievement rates (QAR) 2017 to 2018 provisional data window

We have published your provisional QAR 2017 to 2018 data. The data extracts and reports will be available in the ‘QAR reports’ section of the Data Returns page on the Hub.

The query window will run until 5pm on Friday 1 February 2019. You have until this time to inform us of any concerns about how we have implemented our published methodology. You cannot request fixes or adjustments to your 2017 to 2018 individualised learner record (ILR) data.

If you have any queries with the provisional data, please complete a data query form available on the QAR 2017 to 2018 webpage and email this to the service desk at Ask us to assign your query to ‘ESFA Business Operations QAR’.

Accessing QAR data

To access the your QAR data extracts and business intelligence (BI) reports on the Hub you will need to ensure that your user role allows you to access the Data Returns page.

Please see the hub guide to user roles and the in-year guidance on the QAR 2017 to 2018 webpage for more information.

Business rules, dataset specifications and guide updates

Please check the latest versions of the business rules, data set specifications and data extract guides on the QAR 2017 to 2018 webpage.

The main changes from version 1 of these documents are:

  • a change to the exclusion rule for aims recorded with a withdrawal reason of transfer to another aim with the same provider
  • exclusion of former Employer Ownership Pilot (EOP) provision
  • inclusion of the high needs students (HNS) flag in the QAR data
  • revision of qualification type derivation (in the education & training dataset specification)
  • clarification about how we handle the data for sixth form colleges that convert to academies

We have also republished the QAR reports user guide.

Further information

QAR blog post

Inform: May 2018 - this article explains which Funding Monitoring Reports impact on QARs.

Inform: September 2017 - this article explains some of the common data issues we encounter with QARs.

Qualification achievement rates: business rules, technical specifications and data extract guidance

The business rules outline the policy for calculating QARs for apprenticeships and for education and training.The technical specifications explain how QAR’s are calculated, what data is included and what data is excluded. The data extract guidance documents explains how a providers QAR data extracts can be used to show achievement rates to match those in the achievement rates dashboard. It also provides information about how the data is generated.

Minimum standards

Explains how we will apply minimum standards to all age apprenticeships and to adult (19+) education and training provision.

  1. Minimum standards 2017 to 2018
  2. Minimum standards 2016 to 2017
  3. Minimum standards 2015 to 2016

National achievement rates tables

The national achievement rate tables (NARTs) provide detailed information about QARs, allowing the sector to analyse and benchmark performance.

  1. National achievement rates tables 2016 to 2017
  2. National achievement rates tables 2015 to 2016

Guidance for providers

Guidance for requesting access to the Identity and Access Management System (IDAMS) and how to request the necessary user permissions to access your QAR data.

Published 27 November 2017
Last updated 10 January 2019 + show all updates
  1. We have updated the information on the qualification achievement rates (QAR) 2017 to 2018 provisional data window.
  2. We have updated the information on R04 data returns.
  3. We have published information on the qualification achievement rates (QAR) 2017 to 2018 provisional data window.
  4. We've updated the information on the Qualification Achievement Rates (QAR) reports.
  5. Added Qualification Achievement Rates update: dashboard decommissioning and new reports
  6. Added minimum standards 2017 to 2018 guidance
  7. We have released the in-year Qualification Achievement Rate (QAR) data for 2017 to 2018 on both the Hub and through the Business Intelligence (BI) dashboards.
  8. Added information about the qualification achievement rates (QARs) 2017 to 2018 – in-year data release.
  9. Added a link to our provider feedback survey.
  10. Added the qualification achievement rates 2017 to 2018.
  11. Link added to the collections page for February’s Inform
  12. Updated qualification achievement rates 2016 to 2017 documents.
  13. First published.