Awarding in 2021

This section contains the latest information on how approved GCSE, AS and A levels the Welsh Baccalaureate Skills Challenge Certificate and vocational qualifications will be awarded to learners in Wales in summer 2021.

Approved GCSE, AS and A levels  

Vocational qualifications  (VQs) 

Some vocational qualifications, such as Essential Skills and those in Health and Social Care, and Childcare, are only available in Wales. However, many vocational qualifications taken in Wales are also taken in England and Northern Ireland. For these, we work closely with our fellow regulators (Ofqual in England, and CCEA in Northern Ireland), to make sure that learners’ experience of the qualifications is the same, regardless of where they study. 

  • On 24 March, Ofqual published its Vocational Qualifications Contingency Regulatory Framework (VCRF) (Conditions, Requirements and Guidance), which will remain in place until at least 31 August 2021. Shortly, we will publish a version of the VCRF that will apply to qualifications delivered in Wales during the same period. The VCRF will replace the Extended Extraordinary Regulatory Framework that came into effect on 6 October 2020. 
  • Following  its  recent consultation, Ofqual has provided clarity on what the approach to assessing and awarding the different types of vocational qualifications will be in Wales, England and Northern Ireland.  
  • Ofqual has published an explainer tool that includes high-level information on the approach for all vocational qualifications, including those available to learners in Wales. More detailed information on the approaches for qualifications that will receive a Centre Determined grade will be available from the awarding bodies over the Easter period. 
  • The  approach to awarding vocational qualifications in Wales  this summer has been confirmed. Further information on specific qualifications is available from the relevant awarding bodies on the detailed arrangements for each of their qualifications. Teachers should refer to their awarding body’s website for the latest updates.   


You can read our latest communications with learners, centres and the Welsh Government about awarding qualifications in summer 2021 on our Correspondence page.


Further information

There is a wealth of information and useful materials available for teachers and lecturers preparing to award centre determined grades this summer on the WJEC website and Welsh Government’s Hwb site.