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Nvq Equivalents


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A member of our staff is currently working towards an MA in Education. She expects this will take her at least 3 years to complete and is costing her quite a lot of money.

She was a bit upset yesterday when another member of staff told her that she has an NVQ level 5, which she completed in 1 year and was part funded, and which she said is equivalent to an MA.

Can any of you enlighten us about this as she says what's the point of carrying on with the MA if she can do an NVQ 5 in 1 year and save a lot of time and money?

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NVQs are not formally defined in terms of equivalence to conventional academic qualifications. However for the compilation of social statistics and other purposes, approximate equivalences have to be established. The following equivalences are used by the London School of Economics's Research Lab[1]


* NVQ 1 = foundation GNVQ, three to four GCSEs at grades D-E, Business & Technology Education Council (BTEC) first certificate.

* NVQ 2 = five GCSEs at grades A*-C, BTEC first diploma.

* NVQ 3 = two or more A levels, BTEC Ordinary National Diploma (OND), City & Guilds Advanced Craft.

* NVQ 4 = BTEC Higher National Certificate (HNC) or Higher National Diploma (HND), or City & Guilds Full Technological Certificate / Diploma

* NVQ 5 = ordinary (non-honours) degree



Edexcel state NVQ Level 7 = to Masters


There is a grid here

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Thanks very much for your replies.

The grid Marion linked appears to show that an NVQ level 5 is equivalent up to a doctorate which I find really unlikely, but who am I to argue.

If this is the case I'd better not show it to my colleague or she'll be even more depressed about it.

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well I did the Higher National Diploma which the grid says is a 6 but I always thought it was a 4 or 5 about the same as a foundation degree as I still had to do the top up year to get a full honours degree ???

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