ABE has changed its qualifications from the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF) to the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF). The structure of a Diploma in Business Management at levels 4, 5 and 6 remains the same, but there are now a new set of units with new titles and syllabuses. So for students who are part way through a diploma based on the QCF how do you complete your ABE qualification?
Fortunately ABE has transition arrangements to enable you to work out what units you need to pass to complete your ABE qualification. These are published on the ABE website (RQF transition). However, we find from student enquiries that many find the issue confusing.
How many units do you still need to do?
The first point to find out is how many units you still need to do. This is based on the number of units you have already passed. Basically if you are close to finishing the diploma, and are one or two units short of what you would need for a QCF diploma, then you will need to pass a total of four units for the Level 4 Diploma, seven or eight units for the Level 5 Diploma or five units for the Level 6 Diploma. If you are a long way from finishing (generally less than half way through) then you will need to complete the full four units (Level 4 Foundation Diploma), six units (Level 5 and 6 Diplomas) or eight units (Level 4 Diploma). You will receive either a QCF certificate if you are close to finishing the diploma, or an RQF certificate if you pass the full number of units required for an RQF diploma, when you complete the qualification.
If you have nearly finished a QCF based diploma in a subject that is no longer offered by ABE as part of the RQF, such as Travel, Tourism and Hospitality Management or the Management of Information Systems pathway, then you do not need to worry. The units you have passed coupled with the extra units you need to complete will mean you can receive the qualification in your chosen subject with the relevant QCF certificate.
Which units do you still need to do?
The second point is to work out which units you still need to do to complete your ABE qualification. ABE publishes a list of unit exemptions (RQF transition). The issue that seems to confuse people is that these only work in the one direction. They show you which of the new RQF units are in effect covering the same area as a QCF unit and so are treated as equivalent. You should not (as some people mistakenly do) look at the list to see which QCF units equate to which RQF units to see the units you still need to do. The exemptions list shows you the units you have already obtained, and so cannot do, when calculating which units you still need to do.
Many QCF units do not have a RQF exemption, particularly those from the qualifications that have been withdrawn (e.g. Travel, Tourism and Hospitality Management), but this does not matter as it is the total number of units you have passed which matters when deciding how many and which units you need to do to complete your ABE qualification.
You therefore choose the units you need to do from the RQF units, but you cannot choose a unit which you have in effect already passed if you have an exemption for it. There are some situations (students who have passed three units at level 4, or three to four units at level 6) where you do have to choose from specified units and within those units you similarly cannot choose units you are exempt from. If you are still not sure then please contact us with a list of the units you have already passed and we will advise you.
Where do you study these units?
If you need any units to complete your ABE qualification then it is very easy to do so with iQualify UK. You can study one unit at a time, or as many units as you want to, and at your own pace. The tuition fee is £99 per unit to which you will need to add the relevant ABE assessment fee when you want to take it (currently £45 per unit for Level 4 or £60 per unit for Level 5 and 6). You must also have an up to date ABE student membership to be able to sit an exam or submit an assignment and obtain the result. Some RQF units are assessed by assignments (submitted in March, June, September or December) and some by exam (in June or December). Please note that while assignments can submitted from anywhere you will need to come to the UK to sit any exam. See the relevant assessment section in the course information for the Level 4 Diploma in Business Management, Level 5 Diploma in Business Management or the Level 6 Diploma in Business Management.
ABE do not now allow you to self-study, but you can do a much better version through studying online with iQualify UK. You receive all the information you need to pass in our online Teaching Zone along with the support of your personal tutor who you can ask about anything you don’t understand, for advice on completing your assignment or about any other concern you may have.
Simply complete the registration form at enrol now and say which units you have passed, and which ones you want to study, in the box for education details. We look forward to helping you complete your ABE qualification and thus fulfil your objectives!