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The Institute for Apprenticeships (IfA), as of 31 January is now officially the Institute for Apprenticeships & Technical Education (IfATE) . The Institute will take-over responsibility for T Levels, including arranging the approval of outline content for all T Levels; issuing contracts to awarding organisations; and approving the final T Levels ready for providers to teach.

Sir Gerry Berragan, Chief Executive of the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education, said: “We look forward to playing a key role in the development of T Levels, while maintaining and further improving the work we do to deliver high quality apprenticeships. We find ourselves on the threshold of a hugely exciting era for technical education.”

In December, Education Secretary Damien Hinds announced the roll-out of the second wave of T-Levels across Health, healthcare science, science, onsite construction, building services engineering, digital support and services and digital business services which are to be taught from 2021. It was also confirmed that T-levels will be allocated UCAS tariff points, with each programme carrying the same points as three A-levels.

T Levels are new, two-year, post-GCSE courses that will be available full time in selected colleges and schools from September 2020. The courses will be classroom based with a substantial industry placement element and will enable students to progress into skilled employment, apprenticeships or higher education.

A T Level is split into three main sections:

–  Technical Qualification – the main classroom-based element part of a T Level where students will learn about their chosen sectors

–  Industry Placement – which runs for at least 45 days and will give students practical insights into their sector

–  English, maths & digital provision – this is built into the classroom-based element of the T Level and is there to ensure students have these transferable skills

The Institutes Role:

The Institute is responsible for the Technical Qualification (TQ). This is the main, classroom-based element of the T Level, and equips students with the skills and knowledge necessary to give them a broad understanding of their chosen occupational route.

TQs are made primarily by T Level Panels, who work with the Institute to form outline content. These panels are made up by industry experts, who form the core content and occupational specialisms within the qualification. As part of this process, outline content is put out for public consultation.

When outline content has been finalised and signed off by the Route Panels, it is then ready to be bid on by Awarding Organisations (AOs), who, if successful, will then develop the content. More information on the procurement process can be found here.

Formally, the Institute is responsible for the procurement and management of the TQs, whereas:

–  Industry Placements are run by the Department for Education

–  Liaison with providers (schools, colleges etc.) sits with the Education and Skills Funding Agency, and Department for Education

–  The accreditation and regulation of the qualification sits with Ofqual