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Acronyms, Qualifications and Standards

Acronym Description Definition
14-19 14-19 year olds Target age group for raising expectations and attainment.
APL Accreditation of Prior Learning Recognition of value of learning outside formal education institutions
AP(E)L Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning Recognition value of learning through experience
APCL Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning Recognition of learning through stand-alone courses
AQA Assessment and Qualifications Alliance English Exam Board
BA Bachelor of Arts 3-4 Year University course excluding a dissertation
BA (Hons) Bachelor of Arts (Honours) 3-4 Year University course including dissertation
BECTA British Educational Communications and Technology Agency Formerly National Council for Educational Technology (NCET) and is the lead agency for Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in education with the remit
to co-ordinate development and delivery of the government's strategy to improve education, skills and children's services through the use of technology.
BSc Bachelor of Science Excludes dissertation
BSc (Honours) Bachelor of Science (Honours) Includes dissertation
CAP Common Application Process System enabling learners to apply for courses and opportunities using an on-line common application form
CCIS Client Caseload Information System System which holds a range of information on young people aged 13-19 in order to assess progress in local areas on a range of measures, including cutting the number of young people not in education, employment or training (NEET).
The system is currently run by Connexions partnerships. From 2008 local authorities will be responsible for delivering the Connexions service.
DCSF Department for Children, Schools and Families Purpose is to make England the best place in the world for children and young people to grow up
DfES Department for Education and Skills Defunct – duties split between DCSF and DIUS
DIUS Department of Innovation, Universities and Science Purpose: to build a dynamic, knowledge based economy via colleges, research, science and universities.
Includes the science and innovation responsibilities from the Department of Trade and Industry and skills, further and higher education from the Department for Education and Skills.
ECM Every Child Matters – policy initiative Every child, whatever their background or circumstances, to have the support to be healthy, safe, enjoy, achieve personally and economically and make a positive contribution to society.
FD Foundation Degree 1st 2 years of Honours Degree, option to top up to full honours if applicable
FE Further Education Post-compulsory education at pre-degree level, which may include (the opportunity to take) qualifications also available at the level of compulsory schooling
FTE Full Time Equivalent The proportion of a nominal full-time student in higher education that a non-full-time student is judged to constitute
GCSE General Certificate of Secondary Education School leaving certificate
The qualification mainly involves studying the theory of a subject, combined with some investigative work. Some subjects also involve practical work. GCSEs are usually studied full-time at school or college, taking five terms to complete.
GCSEs are at levels 1 and 2 on the National Qualifications Framework, depending on the grade you get. To achieve high grades, you'll usually be expected to show good levels of attainment in reading and writing. Grades D-G are at level 1 and grades A*-C are at level 2.
GERI Gender Equality and Race Inclusion Project promoting equality and diversity tackling ageism, racism, gender and ethnic stereotyping
HE Higher Education Education provided by degree awarding institutions.
HLSPP Higher Level Skills Pathfinder Project Collaborative project between HE institutions and their regional partners to build closer relationships supporting learners for the long term benefit of the economy
IAG Information, Advice and Guidance A service to promote the value of learning, to be accessible to all, providing the help needed to enter and overcome the barriers to learning, enabling realistic and well informed choices progression in learning and work
ICS International Correspondence Schools ICS is the world’s largest distance learning organisation. Their aim is to make learning as accessible as possible – allowing busy people to get the skills, training and education they want, in a way that offers them complete flexibility
ICT Information Communication & Technology Any product that will store, retrieve, manipulate, transmit or receive information electronically in digital form.
ILP Individual Learning Plans Involves screening, initial and diagnostic assessment with a learner to establish goals and targets.
JISC Joint Information Systems Committee Aim to provide world-class leadership in the innovative use of ICT to support education and research.
KS Key Stage Milestones in child’s educational life.
LSC Learning Skills Council Aim is to improve the skills of young people and adults to develop a world-class standard workforce.
LLN Lifelong Learning Network Objective is to improve the coherence, clarity and certainty of progression opportunities for vocational learners into and through higher education.
MIAP Managing Information Across Partners Aims to streamline the collection, handling, dissemination of information on learning and achievement for education and training organisations.
MSc Master of Science Postgraduate academic degree awarded after the completion of a program of one to four years in duration.
NQF National Qualifications Framework Sets out the levels against which a
qualification can be recognised which helps learners make informed decisions about the qualifications they want to pursue, by comparing the levels of different qualifications and identifying different progression routes.
NEET Not in Employment, Education and Training Government classification of those identified as, or anticipated to be, under-performing.
NIACE National Institute of Adult Continuing Education Non-governmental organisation encouraging more and different adults to engage in learning of all kinds.
NGO Non-Governmental Organisation Organisation with given official consultative status.
OLASS Offender Learning and Skills Service Central part of action plan to reduce reoffending contributing to Skills for Life and Skills Strategy, overseen by Ministry.
PhD Doctor of Philosophy An advanced academic degree which has become the most common denomination for a research doctorate and applies to graduates in a wide array of disciplines in the sciences and humanities.
QAA Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education Safeguard and help to improve the academic standards and quality of higher education in the UK.
QCA Qualification & Curriculum Authority Regulate, develop and modernise the curriculum, assessments, examinations and qualifications.
QCF Qualifications and Credit Framework The framework is a new way of recognising skills and qualifications. It does this by awarding credit for qualifications and units (small steps of learning). It enables people to gain qualifications at their own pace along flexible routes.
SCITT School Centred Initial Teacher Training Option to complete teacher training course in classroom environment.
SSCs Sector Skills Councils There are 25 Sector Skills Councils (SSCs). Each SSC is an employer-led, independent organisation that covers a specific sector across the UK. Together, the SSCs cover approximately 89 per cent of the UK workforce.
UKCES The UK Commission for Employment and Skills Formerly the Sector Skills Development Agency, UKCES operates across the UK and plays a central role in raising the UK's skills base, improving productivity and competitiveness and increasing employment. It will play a critical part in securing for the UK the ambitions of achieving a world class profile on skills by 2020 and the aspiration of an 80% employment rate.
UKRLP UK Register of Learning Providers 'one-stop' portal for sharing and updating key information about learning providers in one place.
WBL Work-based learning Creation of university-level learning based within the working environment.
WVLLN Western Vocational Lifelong Learning Network Part of national initiative bringing together representatives from higher education institutions across the northern half of the South West with the aim of broadening access to vocational higher education for all ages.
YM Youth Matters Government Green Paper on Youth, 2005.

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