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What skills and experience do you need to become a trainer and assessor?

Are you thinking about a complete change of career? Have you spent long enough ‘on the tools’ and decided now is the time to become a trainer and assessor for vocational qualifications?

Or do you think that the role of a trainer and assessor could bring you the ultimate pride and job satisfaction?

I know I might be slightly biased. But ‘the proof is in the pudding’ as they say. And I’m still here after more than 20 years, so it can’t be too bad!

We are often asked at the Education and Training Academy about the skills, knowledge, and experience needed to take up teaching or to become a trainer and assessor. So we are going to outline some of those for you here.

But it takes more than building up experience and skills to become an expert in Further Education and Training. So, we are also going to touch on a few of the characteristics and key personal traits that you may already have in abundance, and which could enhance your career.

We’ll talk you through what your journey will involve from studying as a novice trainer or assessor, to becoming not just good at your job, but how to become a great trainer and assessor.  

Starting your journey to become a trainer and assessor  

The Education and Training Academy is expert in providing accredited training and assessor qualifications at various levels.

And we love nothing better than to see a student, who wants to become a trainer and assessor, progress with us through their entire learning journey.

Minimum entry requirements for assessor and trainer qualifications generally include:

  • a minimum age of 19 years
  • English reading and writing, Maths, and ICT all Level 2
  • and a good knowledge of the subject you will be assessing.

The standards and requirements for each course tend to increase as the levels progress.

So, you could start from the very beginning, with a purely knowledge-based course, just to dip your toe in the water, and get a feel for whether a career as a trainer and assessor is what you want.

If this sounds right for you, then enrolment for the Level 3 Award in Understanding the Principles and Practices of Assessment involves the standard requirements mentioned above. It is a relatively short course to complete and is assessed by way of successful completion and submission of one essay.

You do not need to provide any evidence of your abilities as an assessor at this stage.

This is why this course is the perfect foundation to move on to a more practical assessor qualification.

What comes next in training and assessor qualifications?

Understanding the ‘basics’ of assessment is a great start, from where you can further develop your own knowledge. But it also leads you to an opportunity to put your existing experience in that particular field or line of work to greater use.

You could become a trainer and assessor in any area of work, from the beauty industry to construction. Training and assessing students driving a car, van, or operating handling equipment, right through to Customer Services.

The good news is vocational trainers and assessors are always needed. Even more so now than ever before, with the ongoing impact of Brexit and the pandemic creating a decline in skilled workers.

Requiring a sound knowledge of the job or tasks you will be assessing, becoming a trainer or assessor is an ideal career move if you have gathered plenty of ‘on-the-job’ practice, and want to be able to pass that expertise on to others.  

Here at the Education and Training Academy, we offer the following assessor qualifications:

In addition to the general enrollment requirements, you must be confident in the area in which you are going to be assessing the performance of others.

With so many variables in vocational training and assessment, we must also ensure fairness and consistency in how students are assessed and measured in their performance.

So, we offer the following additional qualifications to meet the Internal Quality Assurance (IQA) standards:

If you are thinking of enrolling in these courses, ideally you will have both occupational competence and vocational skills in a workshop, classroom, or other learning environment.  

Amongst other important elements, within these courses, you will learn about the principles of assessment, how to plan assessments and make assessment decisions, and how to maintain legal and good practice requirements when assessing vocational skills and occupational competence.  

But we also touched on other ‘soft skills’ that are required to become a trainer and assessor earlier. Because delivering great training and carrying out assessments within guidelines, as well as in a manner that will serve your student’s continuing development, involves more than just gaining your assessor qualifications.

Personal traits and characteristics which will help you become a trainer and assessor

Obvious as it may sound, you might be great actually doing the job, on the sales floor, answering the phones, as a skilled bricklayer, electrician, beauty therapist, or whatever trade you were in.

It doesn’t always follow that you will be just as great as a leader, trainer, or assessor.

What other skills do you need?

Expert knowledge in your field – without this, your chances of excelling as a trainer and assessor are very slim!

The subject matter expert is able to instil confidence and genuine interest in those learning. And an expansive knowledge, passion, and confidence in the topics you are working with will help nurture and bring out the best in your students too.

Communication skills – this is where the best trainers and assessors come into their own. If you want to become a trainer and assessor, clear and effective communication is really going to benefit your role.

You will need to be able to spot the range of abilities and learning styles your students may have and tweak your methods of communication accordingly.

Remember too that you are likely to be communicating with stakeholders, peers, other assessors, and trainers at all levels and in a variety of ways – written, spoken, and listening.

Empathy and understanding – not all students or employees are confident when it comes to being watched in their work. They may be perfectly capable when left to work under their own steam. But doing that job or that specific task under a pair of watchful eyes is completely different. Especially if they know a certificate or award is at stake.

Coming back into education, potentially years after finishing school, is a huge personal challenge for some. So, whether you are training in the workplace, or in a classroom environment, just be mindful of the pressure they may be feeling.

Effective time management – aim to set a good example for your students, as well as manage your own workload efficiently.

Calm and able to deal under pressure – teaching, observing, marking assignments, or assessing ongoing development, you will need to be able to deal with a host of situations.

You will have time constraints to complete your own tasks, as well as ensure your students do their best work within deadlines too.  But staying calm, even under pressure, will benefit all aspects of your work, and those around you.

Innovative and highly adaptable – an ability to recognise different levels of skills and experience, and to be able to adapt learning resources, materials, and teaching styles to allow for differentiation of learning abilities is a powerful skill. You will gain more from being able to adapt in this way, and your learners will not only appreciate this, but they will thrive in an environment where they feel included and acknowledged.

Thinking on my feet is something I have perfected over the years!

This links nicely to my final point. If you are adaptable enough to change your plans whilst still delivering the best training and assessment practice for all parties, then you are well on your way to becoming a great trainer and assessor!

Aside from all the professional benefits, and career prospects, of becoming an industry expert trainer and assessor, this role brings so much for you personally. And there is nothing more satisfying than to watch your students progress through their careers, knowing you have been a part of that.

I want to become a trainer and assessor, what’s next?

Now you know the skills and qualifications needed, if you know you want to become a trainer and assessor in your industry, we will welcome you here at the Education and Training Academy!

We are experts in delivering training courses, lectures, and training programmes, to meet all requirements.

So even if you feel you have bespoke learning needs, or your business demands specific internal quality assurance or assessments, we can work with you to ensure these are met.  

To find out more about your journey to achieving training and assessment qualifications, why you should choose the ETA as your training provider, or how we can train your staff to become a trainer and assessor so you can retain in-house skills, simply read our course outlines and information, or contact us today.

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matthew reynolds
Mathew Reynolds | Managing Director and Teacher
Welcome to the ETA. It is my goal to help you get your qualifications in the easiest and quickest way. Unlike other training providers, I am putting my name and reputation on the line, I am not hiding behind logos, this is me, this is my company and I am accountable for you to reach your goals.
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