Aims and Objectives of the Qualifications:
Functional Skills qualifications have been designed to give equal access to English, mathematics and ICT to a broad range of learners covering a wide cross section of society. The fundamental skills acquired and applied through Functional Skills English aims to assist individuals in the progression and development in life, work and learning. Providing the skills and abilities needed to engage and be active within communities, workplace and in educational settings. Functional Skills enable learners to actively communicate in ways that make them effective and involved citizens who are able to operate confidently and to convey their ideas and opinions clearly in a wide range of contexts. The Functional Skills criteria in English aims to equip learners with the skills and confidence to apply and adapt their English knowledge and skills to new situations in their life and work in a range of contexts and for various purposes. The aim of the Functional Skills qualification in English at Entry 1, 2 and 3 are to equip learners with the skills and confidence to apply their English knowledge to every day functional situations in life and work. Functional Skills objectives are to develop the learners’ abilities and to apply and transfer skills in ways that are appropriate to their situation. The assessments therefore focus on functionality and the application of skills as articulated by the Functional Skills criteria in English. The Functional Skills qualification in English at Entry 1, 2 and 3 are designed to assess Functional Skills in English at each sub-level as determined by the Functional Skills criteria. The qualifications require learners to successfully achieve summative assessment tasks that are externally set, internally marked, and externally quality assured. Functional Skills learners can take these when they have undergone a relevant teaching and learning programme that covers the skills criteria and have developed the appropriate skills for assessment.
Subject Matter and Content of the Qualifications
To achieve the Functional Skills qualification in English at Entry 1, 2 and 3 learners would be expected to:
- Apply their knowledge and understanding to identify the approaches required to communicate with others in increasingly unfamiliar and non-routine contexts and situations (complexity).
- Apply a range of techniques across an increasingly wide range of texts, formal and informal situations and contexts (technical demand).
- Use English skills with increasing levels of independence, drawing on a range of approaches to each skill area (independence).
- Apply their knowledge, skills and understanding within familiar contexts across a range of situations and text types (familiarity)
Guided Learning Hours
Guided Learning Hours (GLH) are a guide to the amount of teacher-supervised or directed study time a learner will need to complete the learning needed for a qualification. We recognises that every learner is different and the actual time taken may vary beyond the 45 GLH stated. Training providers not reliant on public funding measured by GLH may find them a useful guide to the recommended length of a programme of study.
Total Qualification Time (TQT)
The Total Qualification Time for these qualifications is 45 hours
Through consultation with users, TQT has been agreed by considering the total number of learning hours required for the average learner to achieve this qualification.
- Guided Learning Hours (GLH):
Learning activity under the immediate guidance or supervision of a lecturer, supervisor, tutor or other appropriate providers of education or training
- Includes the activity of being assessed if the assessment takes place under the immediate guidance or supervision of a lecturer, supervisor, tutor or other appropriate providers of education or training.
- Other Learning Hours (OLH):
- an estimate of the number of hours a learner will spend, as directed by (but not under the immediate guidance or supervision of) a lecturer, supervisor, tutor or other appropriate providers of education or training, including:
- preparatory work
- or any other form of education or training, including assessment.
Achieving the qualifications:
Learners will undergo appropriate teaching and learning programmes as would normally be delivered by us. Curriculum teaching and learning will cover the Functional Skills criteria for English in their entirety at Entry Level 1, 2 or 3. Learners can take the summative assessment for the qualifications when they have developed the appropriate skills and are ready for assessment. The summative assessment consists of externally set assessment tasks that assess the whole of the skill criteria and the underpinning coverage and range. Sample assessments and detailed mark schemes which are mapped to the Functional Skills criteria for English. The assessment tasks will be taken under controlled conditions. The duration of the assessments will be 45 minutes for reading and 45 minutes for writing at all levels of Entry. The assessments may take place in the classroom but the learners should not be disadvantaged by the environment. The speaking, listening and communication assessment at all levels is 15 minutes long but learners are permitted 30 minutes preparation time prior to the assessment.