HN Next Generation
Some of you may know that SQA has recently embarked on a review of Higher National Qualifications (HNQs). HNQs include HNCs and HNDs (but also PDAs). The last review of HNQs was in 2003, when the current design rules were introduced. The new initiative is called HN Next Generation (HN-NG) and will take a root-and-branch review of current HN awards.
At this time, the project team are gathering information and that will be the focus for most of this year (2018). Meetings have been arranged (or have already taken place) with stakeholders across all sectors. Once this fact-finding phase is complete, the team responsible for HN-NG will then consider what changes should be made (and consult on those changes). There are no firm timescales right now and we don’t want to hurry this important review so nothing will change in the foreseeable future.
Running in parallel with this project is SQA’s on-going Assessment Futures initiative, which is taking a hard look at our assessment practices with a view to modernising them. It is likely that these two initiatives will work together so that the assessment model employed in HN-NG will be informed by the Assessment Futures project.
Undoubtedly, changes are coming to HNQs. It’s too early to say what these will be but they will likely have a big impact on the shape of Higher National awards in the future. The review of a number of HN Computing qualifications will commence this year so it’s possible that we will be able to get involved in these exciting developments at a very early stage. I will write more about the forthcoming review of HN Computing awards in the near future.