Request for Assessment Variation

Given changes in our Regulations, in line with JCQ guidance, we now require that any centre distributing papers (especially Functional Skills) to multiple assessment locations complete an Assessment Variation Form. For approval, centres must include the address(es) of the alternative site(s), the number of learners affected, and an approximate date and time of the first affected assessment.

In order to securely distribute assessment materials to alternative sites, centres must either securely transport or must organise the secure transportation of the assessment materials to the alternative site(s). Centres must use the following:

  • By post, using Royal Mail Special Delivery
  • Secure courier, tracked with a guarantee of service delivery
  • By hand delivery directly to the invigilator
  • Assessment materials must be transported in lockable storage/case and must not be left unattended.

In addition, centres must inform NCFE if a learner(s) requires an assessment variation for:

  • Childcare arrangements
  • Unable to be released from the workplace
  • Time of worship
  • Centres must ensure the conditions and integrity of the assessment are maintained, i.e the assessment material must be kept in the secure storage facility, centres must ensure the learner has no access to other learners who have completed the assessment on the planned assessment date, and assessment materials must be returned within 2 working days of the assessment taking place.

Centres who are requesting additional time for any assessment window scheduled to straddle half-term holidays, e.g. HSED2 and DCE2, should also complete the attached External Assessment Planning Document and send it to [email protected]

External Assessment Planning Document

All external assessments must be delivered in accordance with the Regulations for the Conduct of External Assessment.

We publish set dates and times for some external assessments. Please reference our Qualification Specific Instructions for Delivery (QSID) which identifies the relevant qualifications and External Assessment Timetable for more details of the specific qualifications and assessment dates relating to your variation request.

Please complete the below form if you would like approval to:

  • vary the published assessment date
  • vary the published assessment time, beyond the permitted 30 minutes
  • change (or extend) the assessment site from your current approved location.

Please refer to the Regulations for guidance on examples for which we typically will/will not accept a variation. As a guide, alternative dates/times will not be considered for the following:

  • work experience
  • school function or closure
  • field trip
  • sporting events below international level
  • holidays and weddings
  • a learner’s personal arrangements

This request must be received no later than 20 working days prior to the external assessment (set date/time) or the start of the assessment window. Our Quality Assurance Team will get back to you with a response within 5 working days. If the request is received later than 20 working days, then we reserve the right to reject the request.

Please complete the following:

*Please note that we will not accept requests to change assessment/submission dates to an earlier date.
(Note that ‘as per JCQ Guidelines’ will not be accepted unless in reference to overnight stays. Please consider how learners will be supervised (with particular reference to monitoring electronic communications), how assessment papers will be stored and/or transported, and how invigilation will be undertaken. Note that, for date and/or time variations, the onus is on the centre to ensure that no contact is made between learners from the same centre or across other centres.)
Please tick to agree.