Covid-19 FAQs

We know that the implementation of social distancing and the requirement to close all educational settings has had a profound impact on the delivery and assessment of vocational qualifications affecting many learners.

 

VTCT is working closely with colleagues at Ofqual and a small expert group of specialist education professionals to develop an approach for vocational and technical qualifications which will be published in the coming days.

 

As soon as we have the answers we need, we will urgently publish updated information directly to centres and on our websites.

Examinations General

What will happen if our learners can’t sit the examinations/assessments as planned?

VTCT will support centres to reschedule learners to another assessment date. Currently, centres do not need to withdraw learners; if learners do not sit an examination it will not count as an attempt for them.

Will there still be EQA visit?

Whilst VTCT cannot be certain when the government will announce any new restrictions as part of the current phase of the response to the coronavirus outbreak, we should all expect to experience further restrictions in educational settings, to be confirmed via future updates.  To minimise disruption during the weeks ahead, VTCT has put in place contingency plans to conduct all EQA visits remotely until the end of July 2020.

VTCT EQAs have already started to make contact with all VTCT approved centres to agree to these arrangements. VTCT will also facilitate extraordinary timetable changes to support centres and to ensure we provide maximum support to VTCT approved centres during these challenging times and in particular over the next 16 weeks, as this takes us to the end of July, where we would expect to have completed most centre monitoring visits for this academic year.

PTQ Exams

Will my summer exams still go ahead?

Currently the Government announcement about the cancellation of summer examinations applies to A Levels and GCSEs only which are General Qualifications. VTCT’s Technical Award, Technical Certificates, Technical Levels and Applied Generals are vocational qualifications. The examinations and submission windows planned for the Easter 2020 and Summer 2020 assessment series will go ahead as planned. However, VTCT recognises the logistical challenges centres face should schools and colleges close or suffer other disruptions. Therefore, VTCT wishes to ensure that learners are able to access these examinations in all circumstances, in order to complete their qualifications in 2020.

 

VTCT has published a programme of additional contingency/optional assessment series windows (monthly windows June-December 2020), provided extensions to deadlines for scheduling learners, and removed restrictions regarding specific examination papers allowed in an assessment series. The additional assessment series, which will be available throughout the year, will give the flexibility that is needed in these uncertain times. Centres are now able to schedule learners in the e-testing system for these contingency assessment series. All of the assessment series are open and we have been flexible with the deadlines to schedule learners. The default delivery method of these examinations will be online only. This is necessary so VTCT is able to issue results within the turnaround period published.

 

The Contingency Key Dates Document is available to access here and on our qualification pages. In addition, the synoptic assessment briefs and assignment briefs that VTCT published for 2019-2020 will remain valid for all assessments up until the 31 December 2020

Will it count as an attempt if my learners cannot take their examinations as planned?

VTCT will support centres to reschedule learners into an alternative assessment series 2020. Currently, centres do not need to withdraw learners; if learners do not sit an examination it will not count as an attempt for them.  VTCT has published a Contingency Key Dates document and has set out monthly assessment series up until December 2020 to enable learners to complete their qualification.

End-point Assessment

Will my EPA bookings go ahead?

All EPA bookings for March, April and May will now be postponed until at least June 2020. VTCT will be accepting bookings for the month of June, however, please be aware that that depending on circumstances and government guidelines these may be subject to change.

Working together with and guided by the qualification regulators, VTCT is monitoring the ongoing situation. We apologise for any inconvenience that this may cause. If you have any questions regarding this please contact epa@vtct.org.uk or customersupport@vtct.org.uk.

Certificates

Will my learners still receive their certificates?

All learners that have achieved their qualification and are eligible for a certificate will still receive them; we are maintaining a normal service as much as possible however please be aware our normal SLAs may be stretched.

Certificates are posted to training centres so unless we have been instructed to hold onto them whilst Government advice is in place, learners should expect to receive their certificate from their training centre as normal.

All VTCT learners who achieved their qualification post-2009 have access to our free online certificate service, Linx2Validate. Upon creating an account, learners will be able to view a digital copy of their certificate, order a replacement (if originally awarded more than six months ago) and authorise third parties to view their qualification(s).

If there is any change to the situation VTCT will endeavour to keep you informed however should you have any other queries relating to certification, please send an email to certification@vtct.org.uk.