A new suite of Competence based Maritime Qualifications for Scotland by xew0j7Ic


									       A new suite of Competence based Maritime Qualifications for Scotland?

This year, the Maritime Skills Alliance (MSA) developed a UK wide Qualifications Strategy for the
Maritime Sector. The vision set out in the Strategy is to develop qualifications frameworks which:

   o Provide clear career pathways which are both attractive to new entrants
   o Enable the existing workforce to develop their skills;
   o Incorporates regulatory requirements within qualifications thereby encouraging take-up;
   o Link private and public training to national qualifications frameworks;
   o Bring together common needs from across the sector, thereby making
     qualifications and training provision more economically attractive and enabling greater
     transferability across the sector;
   o Allow employers to have confidence in the skills that recruits have (i.e. qualifications are a
     recognised currency).

 The introduction of new qualifications frameworks for England, Wales and Northern Ireland and
the demise of NVQs provided an ideal opportunity to take the first steps to implement the vision
set out above. A new suite of credit-based qualifications has been developed, with full industry
support, covering a wide spectrum of seafaring and water related occupations. MSA attention is
now focused on the needs of the sector in Scotland.

Current Position:
Over 20 different SVQs were developed to cover the needs of sector in Scotland and to provide
equivalence with NVQs that were available in the remainder of the UK. However take up of these
qualifications has not been high and with the development of a new Merchant Navy Officer
Trainee route using an NC and HNC/D it has fallen even further. Consequently nearly all SVQs
have now lapsed, with the exception of Sea Fishing related SVQ that forms part of a Modern
Apprenticeship Framework, and this will lapse on 31 March 2011. There is therefore an urgent
need to consider whether to replace the SVQs for which there is an identified demand or to look
using the Maritime Studies suite as Competence based Qualifications (CBQs) that mirror those
available to the rest of the UK.

The Maritime Studies suite:
These qualifications are based on current National Occupational Standards. Employer
representatives from the parts of the sector to which they relate and the Maritime and Coastguard
Agency have been closely involved in their development, thus ensuring that they do meet industry
needs and reflect the international regulatory requirements. A summary of the qualifications
developed and which are available in the rest of the UK is attached. They have simplified the
previous structure by using a mandatory core of units supplemented with those that offer
specialist pathways; thereby aiding progression and transfer across the sector. It also reduces the
number of separate qualifications, which become subsumed within one overarching framework
containing the various pathways

The proposal:
The Maritime Studies suite should be used as the basis for creating a new suite of CBQs for use in
Scotland, thereby providing equivalence across the whole of the UK.

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