Assessment is an integral part of achievement of an NVQ 3 in Heritage Skills, and can only be undergone by those actively involved in the industry relevant to the qualification. Assessors work with candidates who have entered the Experienced Worker or Specialist Applied-Skills Programmes in order to guarantee they have reached the standard necessary to achieve the NVQ3, primarily through ‘on the job’ observation. You must therefore be employed by an organisation that is undertaking relevant work over the period of assessment, or be self employed and doing similar. For example, you might be:
- employed by a commercial company with some involvement in conservation and repair of historic joinery or structural timber work if you chose to do the Wood Occupations option
- a self employed stonemason involved in restoration of a pre-1919 masonry structure if you took the Stonemasonry option
- on a Trade related bursary scheme with an organisation like the National Trust or Prince’s Foundation
Upon enrolment on our Experienced Worker or Specialist Applied-Skills Programmes you will be asked about assessment. Participants on our courses don’t have to do their assessment with us i.e. they can do the course element with us and have an Assessor from elsewhere, but it is usual to both do the course and be assessed by us.
Our team currently has 2 accredited Assessors: John Munro (Wood occupations, Stonemasonry, Dry Stone Walling) and Alan Creasey (Wood Occupations). Two other members of our team are beginning the process of qualifying as accredited Assessors in Wood Occupations and Stonemasonry respectively.
The process of assessment
The course element of our programmes are designed to provide valuable evidence towards your assessment. In addition to this, over the course of a year from the commencement of your programme you will receive on-site visits from an accredited Assessor at times and places agreed with you and your employer. It is essential that when your Assessor visits you are engaged in relevant ‘live’ work; this will enable your Assessor to properly judge whether you are fulfilling the requirements of the NVQ3 through demonstration of appropriate skills and knowledge. Your Assessor will work with you and your employer to highlight the gaps or areas of improvement necessary for you to reach the required standard, and if necessary help you to arrange relevant schemes of work or even work placements that will allow collection of applicable evidence.
This will support you in your compilation of a ‘portfolio of evidence’: a written document supplemented with photographic / audio / film evidence through which you will be able to demonstrate competence in those areas defined necessary for final achievement of the NVQ. While this may sound a little daunting, it is in fact a straightforward process: candidates assessed by us will be supplied with a sample ‘ideal’ portfolio at the commencement of assessment to guide you, and your Assessor will give you every support to translate your actual skills into the format necessary for the portfolio and ultimate demonstration of your competence for award of the NVQ3.
At the end of the process, the portfolio is submitted and then ‘mapped’ against the key criteria to establish that you have met the requirements. Provided this is the case, you will be awarded with your NVQ3 in heritage skills and be eligible to apply for your CSCS Gold Card.
Assessment fees as of August 2017 are:
- EWP Experienced £1500 plus VAT
- SAP £1500 plus VAT
It is possible that a participant does the course element only i.e. chooses not to undergo assessment towards an NVQ3 or perhaps looks to undertake the assessment element at a later date. This is quite unusual however, and candidates should be aware that they have one year from the course element in order to complete the process of assessment towards the achievement of the NVQ and that funding is usually contingent on the candidate following the entire programme through to the end.