Construction and the Built Environment

Qualifications Wales has now published its sector review of qualifications and the qualification system in Construction and the Built Environment.

This has been a major project involving extensive research across Wales. The research has included:

  • in depth stakeholder engagement;
  • learner engagement;
  • an online survey;
  • an international review; and
  • a technical review of qualifications.

The report, ‘Building the Future’, outlines our key findings and proposals. Some of the key findings are:

  • the terminology used in some written assessments produced by awarding bodies can be difficult and quite advanced, and not the same as those used in the world of work;
  • assessment can be excessive and ineffective, with significant repetition;
  • the quality assurance of assessment can be inconsistent;
  • Welsh speakers often don’t complete written tasks in Welsh, even when they are available, because the terminology is not in the ‘local’ Welsh they speak but rather in what they describe as ‘correct’ Welsh which they struggle to understand;
  • apprenticeships can be too short – much shorter than those in other nations;
  • some skills, such as working with mineral insulated cables, has been removed from the qualifications but many miles of the cables are still installed in homes across the country and newly-trained electricians need to know how to repair when faults occur;
  • not enough is being done in schools to offer advice about the wide range of jobs available in vocational trades, with the emphasis being on academic qualifications and trades seen as the poor relation.

You can download a copy of the full report here.

We have also compiled an international comparison study to supplement the report, which can be found here.

Click on the videos below to hear the views of some of the people who took part in the review, and their views on the completed report.

Cassy Taylor, Associate Director (Vocational Qualifications), Qualifications Wales

Ed Evans, Director, CECA

Tom Anwyl, Director, Anwyl Group

Anthony Rees, Regional Manager, Cyfle Building Skills

Andrew Brett, Head of Construction, Coleg Menai

Ken Pearson, Director, Bluestone Builders

Richard James, HEFE Sector Manager, Willmott Dixon