A brand new option in vocational learning

14 March 2012

A new range of vocational qualifications designed for students aged 16+ has been launched today by our UK exam board, OCR.

Cambridge Technicals are a new vocational option designed to motivate and inspire students whilst rewarding their achievements in major programmes of learning. Valuable support in the form of visiting moderators and in-depth resource tools will be available free of charge to schools and colleges to reinforce teaching. 

Following consultation with employers, industry specialists and teachers, the knowledge and skills embedded in the new Cambridge Technicals will provide relevant experience for students wishing to progress into employment or higher education. Cambridge Technicals have UCAS points so they are recognised for entry to higher education. 

The Cambridge Technicals are offered as Level 2 and Level 3 qualifications in Business, IT, and Health and Social Care, for teaching by schools and colleges from September 2012. Qualifications in Media, Art and Design, Science and Sport will follow from this September to broaden the subject range. 

Flexibility is incorporated in Cambridge Technicals in the form of minimal mandatory units, internal assessment, progressive grading from pass through to a starred distinction, optional work experience, and a range of qualification sizes at each level including a 360 Guided Learning Hours Introductory Diploma, enabling the qualifications to fit a wide range of learning programmes.

Mo Everett, IT trainer and consultant, commenting on her sector needs, said: "How many times have we as IT professionals longed for a qualification that meets the needs of the IT industry as well as the needs of our learners? At last, an awarding body has listened with an initiative that addresses the skills requirements of the IT sector and gives learners a choice of pathways ahead."

OCR Chief Executive Mark Dawe said: "Our vision has been to help teachers face the challenge of driving up standards in vocational education with industry-backed qualifications which prepare students to progress. OCR, as part of the Cambridge Assessment Group, offers high standards and an ethical approach to qualifications and assessment. We have also been mindful as we roll out these qualifications and the associated package of support that teachers are facing challenging economic times so we have kept costs to a minimum."

There is a series of free training events for teachers over the next few months. Visit OCR Cambridge Technicals for further details about the qualification. 

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