Childcare qualification confusion
Do you know your NNEB from your NVQ? Your DCE from your EYE? And what on earth is QCF?
If you’re looking at taking a course online, or you have an exam certificate you can look at to get the full details of the qualification then you’ll find 4 main bits of information: the awarding body, the level, the qualification name and the date.
With this information you can check via Ofqual to verify the validity of the qualification.
You’ll also be able to check the qualification against the Qualification and Credits Framework (that’s the QCF) to see what level the qualification was compared to other qualifications. For example a level 3 qualification is equivalent to A-levels, level 2 is equivalent to GCSEs. The QCF is standardised to allow credits to be transferred and compared. Qualifications are made up of a varying number of credits – the more credits that are earned, the more in depth the qualification. In Scotland the QCF is replaced by the SCQF.
There are many different awarding bodies in childcare offering a number of different qualifications. At the time of writing the qualifications available for study and deemed full and relevant for working in childcare settings are all titled ‘Early a Years Educator’. They may also have another name, for example Diploma for the Early Years Workforce (Early Years Educator), Diploma in Childcare and Education (Early Years Educator) or Diploma in Holistic Baby and Child Care (Early Years Educator).
All previously awarded qualifications on the Ofqual database are still valid, so while the well known NNEB was phased out many years ago it is still a suitable.