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Written Answers - FÁS Training Programmes

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 760 No. 3

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 162.  Deputy Catherine Murphy Information on Catherine Murphy Zoom on Catherine Murphy  asked the Minister for Education and Skills Information on Ruairí Quinn Zoom on Ruairí Quinn  the arrangements in place or are intended to be put in place for FÁS/Solas to reduce delays in providing certificates including competency certificates for those who have satisfactorily completed courses; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16137/12]

Minister of State at the Department of Education and Skills (Deputy Ciarán Cannon): Information on Ciaran Cannon Zoom on Ciaran Cannon In accordance with FETAC requirements all training providers, including FÁS, are required to implement specified verification processes to ensure that the integrity of their assessment systems and their assessment results approval processes are maintained and compliant. All FÁS assessment scripts and associated assessment marks are therefore subject to both internal and external verification processes, and a results approval process.

Internal verification of assessment results is an on-going process. When a course finishes, the assessment results packs (including the evidence) for each learner are submitted by the course Instructor/Contractor to FÁS Training Standards Offices for processing. External Authentication subsequently provides independent confirmation of fair and consistent assessment of learners in accordance with national standards. It establishes the credibility of the provider’s assessment processes and ensures that assessment results have been marked in a valid and reliable way and are compliant with the requirements of the award.

The external authentication process heretofore was a six week fixed-date cycle within the each of the six FETAC certification-requesting periods for Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS). FÁS now operates the external authentication process on a monthly basis for programmes that lead to the issue of competency skills cards. The introduction of monthly external authentication of results for these programmes will greatly expedite the issuing of such cards.

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