New National Qualifications - October Update

Have Your Say – Latest Documents

The latest draft documents for the new qualifications have now been published. Course Specifications for Access 2 and Access 3 are now available on the website and feedback can be given by 31 December 2011 on our Have Your Say page. A summary of all the feedback we've received to date is available here. The subject drop-down menu can be used to view the latest information for each subject.

What’s Next?

By the end of November we will publish draft Course Assessment Specifications for National 5 and draft Unit Specifications for Higher. By mid-December we will publish draft Unit Specifications for Access 2 and Access 3.

October Pack of Materials

Following the Cabinet Secretary’s announcement at the Scottish Learning Festival, copies of the draft specifications for the National 4 and National 5 qualifications are on their way to every secondary school and college.

Packs (which will come in 2 boxes) have been dispatched and include copies of our new parent and teacher leaflets.

CfE Website Updates

We have sections of our CfE website for teachers, parents, young people and employers. Our new homepage directs people to the appropriate area.



Our new mythbuster videos are now available and give more information about the new qualifications and answer some of the most common questions.

We have a jargon buster and a definitions page to help explain the terms we are using in our draft documents.

Latest information

Continue to visit our website at the latest news and resources. Use the subject drop-down menu on each CfE page or on our homepage to find the latest information for each subject. Sign up for MyAlerts to receive e-mail updates.

CfE Events

At the end of November and in December, SQA and Education Scotland will hold a series of curriculum area update events to discuss several aspects of the qualifications with teachers and hear their views. We have written to all local authorities, schools, colleges and independent schools.

New Features Added to NAR

The National Assessment Resource (NAR) has been enhanced and many new features added.

The enhanced functionality enables practitioners to create, store, upload and share their own assessment materials, or copy, amend or customise materials already available. Practitioners are encouraged to share materials and examples of their assessment approaches on NAR, to make NAR a truly collaborative tool.

Support materials are available on NAR and on the Education Scotland website including demonstration videos showing step-by-step guides of many of the new features. You can view these videos here. User guides and posters are being sent out to all schools and colleges at the beginning of November. The user guide is available [link].

Local authority schools can access NAR via Glow. All staff in independent schools and colleges can access NAR via the SQA Connect service.

Jillian Shields

Communications Officer (Curriculum for Excellence)

Scottish Qualifications Authority

The Optima

58 Robertson Street


G2 8DQ

Tel: 0845 213 5621