Registrations, assessments, results and papers

On 9 April, the Secretary of State for Education advised Ofqual that assessments for vocational and technical qualifications (including Functional Skills) cannot proceed as planned this summer, given the Covid-19 pandemic and the resulting Government measures put in place.

With this in mind, we would like to update you on our plans for the assessment of NCFE and CACHE qualifications, under the guidance provided and in line with our vision - every learner will gain access to their appropriate achievement prior to September 2020 and can move on as planned to the next stage of their lives

Mitigated assessments

You can now access a full list of NCFE and CACHE qualifications in scope for exceptional arrangements and how they will be assessed – through estimation / calculation, adaptation or delay (rescheduling).  In scope qualifications pertain to those at entry level to level 6 and approved for funding as defined by the ESFA and Ofqual. Qualifications that are not in scope are not included in the list, as they are still under review, and we will look to provide further information on these in the coming weeks.

Qualification Wales has published clear direction on how Health and Social Care / Childcare qualifications will be assessed and CCEA will be following the same guidance. Level 1 qualifications will receive a calculated result, and qualifications which span Levels 2-5 will have an adapted assessment approach. More information on this can be found here. We have also added these qualifications to the list below, in a separate tab for ease of use.

Please note that the list is still subject to change and we will update you if any updates are made.

Access the list

Guidance documents

NCFE Guidance on summer 2020 awarding

Download this guide to find out more about the principles and process of estimation. We have now added new/updated information on the following which is highlighted in purple:

  • preparation
  • rank ordering
  • mid-flight learners
  • Technical Awards (V Certs)
  • work placements
  • hybrid mitigations.

NCFE Guidance on summer 2020 awarding: Adaptation and Delay

Where qualifications are assigned a mitigation of adaptation, we’ve been working closely with external sector bodies and other awarding organisations to review the qualifications, and we’re pleased to be able to share some of that detail now. This guide provides information on this for around 120 of our adapted qualifications and we will continue to add to this guide as we have the information available.

Centre Assessed Grades – an infographic

This at-a-glance guide supplements our full guidance on Summer 2020 Awarding, providing information on what needs to be provided as part of the estimation / calculation process.

NCFE Functional Skills guidance

 Download this guide to find out more about the process of estimation, particularly relating to Functional Skills qualifications. 

NCFE Registration Guidance

Download this guide to find out the specific information you need about the registration of eligible learners and the process you need to follow to do this.

Guidance on submission of grades

The window for submitting grades is between 1 to 19 June 2020 (this includes assessments which have already been marked and internally quality assured). This guide provides comprehensive step-by-step guidance on how to go through this process. As part of the grade submission process, you may also find the Chief Examiner reports helpful which you can find on the individual qualification pages on QualHub.

You can also watch a demo video here.

Please note that the information provided within these guidance documents is correct as of 29 May but is subject to review following the outcome of the Ofqual consultation. We will update the guidance on a regular basis when we have further details to share.


As we continue to work through all processes and requirements with Ofqual and JCQ to ensure a consistent approach, we would like to share with you a top level timeline, outlining some key milestones in the coming months. This includes timings of issuing guidance, submission of data and more. It’s important to note that these timescales are subject to change, following further alignment with other awarding organisations as well as regulator agreement.

Eligibility timeframe for learners accessing the estimation process

Learners eligible for mitigated assessments this summer will be those that were expected to be ready for assessment between 20 March and 31 July. Please therefore only register and book learners who haven’t previously been registered or booked, and who you expect would have been ready to sit the assessment within this timeframe. We ask that you complete this process of registering and booking eligible learners by 31 May 2020.

Please note that for Functional Skills learners, they need to be registered by 31 May 2020 however there is no requirement to book learners on to an assessment for this process.

It is expected that centres will have evidence to prove that the learners would have been ready for assessment which may be checked as part of our Quality Assurance process. Failure to produce evidence as part of our Quality Assurance process could result in a Malpractice investigation (please see policy for further information).

Deadline extension – important information for your preparation

Where the principal mitigation for qualifications is the issue of calculated results, you should ensure eligible learners are registered before the 31 May 2020. For assessments already marked and internally quality assured, you can submit ‘graded’ qualification assessments (eg pass, merit, distinction) now via portal as normal, however we have extended this deadlines so they can now be submitted alongside Centre Assessed Grades (CAGs) during the 1 to 19 June 2020 window. ‘Ungraded’ qualification assessments (pass/fail) will not be able to be submitted now as this would trigger a partial claim and should therefore be submitted alongside CAGs during the 1 to 19 June 2020 window too.

What more you can be doing to prepare

  • Where you have completed internal assessment, please submit as much as possible in the normal way via our Portal.
  • Where work is not complete, centres should not be asking learners to continue with any unfinished work unless this can be done within the government guidance and with the informed consent of both centre staff and learners, and provided that this does not compromise the validity of the assessments (ie completing controlled assessment work at home under no supervision).
  • Ensuring that all achievements are submitted and as up to date as possible will help you and your learners when we engage with estimation and calculation options this year. Although not all VTQs will be assessed this way, as per Ofqual guidance, it is the preferred option wherever possible to achieve a final result.

Download list of NCFE and CACHE qualifications in scope for exceptional arrangements and how they will be assessed

Download now

Register on our webinars

Due to high demand, we now have an additional date: General guidance on estimation and adaption of qualifications: Wednesday 3 June, 4.00 – 4.45pm, register here

We have included this week’s webinar recordings for you below to watch in your own time.

General guidance on estimation and adaption of qualifications: watch now

Guidance on estimation of Functional Skills: watch now

Download NCFE Guidance on Summer 2020 awarding

Download now

Download NCFE Guidance on summer 2020 awarding: Adaptation and Delay

Download now

Download NCFE Guidance on Functional Skills

Download now

Download NCFE Guidance on Registration

Download now

Guidance on submission of grades

Download now