Education & Instructors
NVQ Assessors (SVQ Assessor in Scotland) help and assess people who are completing NVQs in the workplace. They usually travel around an area, visiting people in different workplaces.
NVQ Assessors visit learners in the workplace, to support and assess people working towards vocational qualifications (NVQs) and help them complete the course to the right standards.
Assessors introduce learners to the specific NVQ they will be following. If there is a group of learners in one location, the assessor will do a presentation to the group. The assessor then makes sure that each learner will be working on the NVQ that is most suitable for their experience and ability.
The assessor spends time with each learner, finding out about any relevant achievements they already have. Often these achievements can count towards the qualification; the assessor needs to decide whether or not this is the case.
To achieve an NVQ, each learner needs to present evidence of what they do as part of their everyday job. This demonstrates the learner's ability to do their job. The assessor agrees with learners the most relevant activities that will count as evidence for them.
Assessors observe learners completing work-specific tasks. Also, the learner's supervisor or manager will often observe tasks and verify that they have been achieved successfully, when the NVQ assessor next visits. Assessors record and review progress over a period of time, usually visiting one learner a month.
Together, assessors and learners decide the length of time the learner will take to complete the NVQ. Assessors offer advice and support when needed, and give constructive feedback. They provide training to learners, where required, to meet gaps in skills and knowledge.
NVQ assessors are usually responsible for planning their work and managing their diary. They travel between locations and keep detailed records of each learner they are working with.
They work in a team with other assessors, and also with verifiers, who are responsible for quality control of the work of a team of NVQ assessors.
Some NVQ assessors have responsibility for helping with development of the NVQs they work with, and making sure they are up to date.
Personal Qualities and Skills
Key skills for NVQ assessors
- Communications skills, both written and verbal.
- Interpersonal and presentation skills.
- The ability to support, monitor and motivate learners
- ICT skills
- Experience of the relevant work areas
- An understanding of the NVQ systems and equal opportunities
Pay And Opportunities
Typical employers of NVQ assessors
Opportunities exist throughout the UK. Employers are colleges, training organisations and companies in the private sector.
There are opportunities to work on a self-employed, freelance basis. Some assessors can work from home, as distance learning assessors. Earnings for self-employed assessors vary and they may charge by the hour, day, or by the NVQ unit delivered. Earnings may be lower when starting out.
Qualification and training required
You will need work experience and a Level 3 qualification or NVQ in the sector you plan to assess. These include:
- Level 3 Award in Assessing Competence in the Work Environment
- Level 3 Award in Assessing Vocationally Related Achievement
- Level 3 Certificate in Assessing Vocational Achievement
In Scotland SQA qualifications for Assessors and Verifiers consist of individual SVQ Units and workplace Professional Development Awards (PDAs), available at SCQF levels 8 and 9. Centres can register candidates for either an SVQ Unit or the corresponding PDA.
Employers usually look for people who have experience of or are currently working in, the relevant sector. You will often need supervisory or management experience in the relevant field. Experience of giving training is an advantage.
Although vacancies often ask for qualified assessors, some employers will take on trainees who complete the relevant assessing qualification, under supervision, as they gain experience.
Assessors may join The Institute of Assessors and Internal Verifiers (IAV) as Associate members once they have begun assessor training. When they have worked as an assessor for at least twelve months they can apply for Licentiate membership and be added to the IAV's National Register. They can apply for Fellowship when they have been qualified for five years.
You could progress to supporting other assessors and making sure they offer high quality level of assessment. For this, you should take the level 4 qualification in assessment from City & Guilds.