Research and analysis

Validation of vocational qualifications: final report

AlphaPlus study of four vocational qualifications and whether there is evidence to support the perceived reliability of their assessments.


Validation of vocational qualifications

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The research questions investigated for this project were:

  • how do awarding organisations currently justify the validity of their vocational qualifications?
  • are they fit for their particular purposes?
  • what evidence is there to justify the validity of their vocational qualifications?
  • could awarding organisations reasonably be expected to produce a comprehensive and robust validity argument in the future?

Four case studies were been carried out. Each case study involved validity work around a single vocational qualification.

The research found that, although there was often strong evidence for the validity of the purpose of the qualification, there was less readily available evidence around the validity of the assessments themselves.

In part this is because, unlike for A levels and GCSEs, the data does not exist or is not collected for vocational qualifications.

Despite this, each of the four case study qualifications and their assessments were perceived by stakeholders to have high validity.

Published 11 February 2014